Sofia Navarro (Nexos Comunitarios Ambassador)
It is very easy, or perhaps very human to feel useless in the face of adversity, what more can I do? we ask ourselves. For many weeks I felt this way, maybe it was due to the fear of confronting the devastating reality of the human tragedy in Piura, or the fear of feeling the necessity of having a responsibility to do something in the face of it. Already worn down by this mentality, I decided to shake it off and take the opportunity to travel to Piura, nothing could have prepared me for what I saw when I arrived.
How do we define human suffering? The trembling and striking voice of a desperate mother? The worn and dirty hands of a devastated flood victim looking and reaching for sustenance, where nothing could be found. The sound of someone in need of aid running ever faster behind the dust, just to receive an empty cardboard box. The cheerful and enthusiastic welcomes that you receive, only to be followed by devastating stories of what the flood victims had lived through, even the experience of death.
Now that I have returned from the trip, it is impossible to put myself in their shoes without feeling discomfort, and in reality, it is impossible to not put myself in their shoes at all. The discomfort is an alarm signal that something needs to change, we cannot only think of ourselves. A discomfort that screams at me that I find sense when I find myself through others. There are so many people who need help and there is so much help I can give. I understand now.
The people that I met, the flood victims do not only need water and provisions, they need continuous support, strength to start from nothing, they need to feel safe again, they need the opportunity to live a more dignified life than they had in the immediate aftermath of the natural disaster. These people have lost everything, yet the taught me so much. Do not miss out on opportunities to meet others, and find yourself through others, we can always do much more than we think we can!