February 7, 2011
$100,000 donation from the Caterpillar Foundation will be used to help rebuild Brazilian communities destroyed by the floods and mudslides in that country’s worst natural disaster, the Pan American Development Foundation, a non-profit organization established in 1962 to promote, facilitate, and implement social and economic development in Latin America and the Caribbean announced. (
“We applaud Caterpillar’s commitment to supporting these devastated Brazilian communities,” said John Sanbrailo, PADF’s executive director, in a written press statement. “This donation will make a difference in the lives of the people who lost everything.”
With the support from Caterpillar, PADF and its local partner, Viva Rios, will remove mud and debris from the most affected alleys and streets, as well as provide basic health care to prevent epidemics through family medicine and mobile health practitioners. They will also disseminate water treatment supplies, coordinate reforestation of the areas near affected water sources and enhance Viva Rios’ already successful “Community Protection Brigades” model. The program is expected to last six months.
“Local Caterpillar dealer Sotreq, individual Caterpillar employees around the world and the Caterpillar Foundation have all committed funds and resources to those affected by this tragedy in Brazil,” said Caterpillar Marketing and Operations Services Director Paul Knollmaier. “With their experience and expertise in Latin American disaster relief, Caterpillar is proud to partner with PADF to provide support for both immediate relief and sustainable rebuilding projects in some of the most devastated regions of Rio de Janeiro.”
Officials estimate that 842 people died, some 8,775 are homeless and another 20,000 people had to abandon their residences because of the disaster. Three communities north of Rio de Janeiro –Teresopolis, Nova Friburgo and Petropolis – were heavily affected by the torrential rains and massive mudslides.