History of Housing

In 2001 a series of earthquakes shook El Salvador. The devastation from the earthquakes created critical and life threatening situations.

El Salvador is the smallest and the most densely populated country in Central America. 

It borders the Pacific Ocean on the south, and the countries of Guatemala to the west and Honduras to the north and east. Its easternmost region lies on the coast of the Gulf of Fonseca, opposite Nicaragua. The country is subject to earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and extreme climates.

  • A brutal civil war, which began in 1980, decimated the country and left more than 75,000 people dead.  A peace accord was signed in 1992
  • Even though the civil war ended, daily violence has continued in the country as gang fighting contributes to high murder rates
  • In 2001 there were 2 major earthquakes that left thousands homeless
  • Regular hurricanes and tropical storms have contributed to loss and life and housing due to flooding and landslides

The country had been crippled by natural disasters and civil war, leaving poverty and its struggles as a lingering burden on its people. As a result of these disasters and a slow economy; basic needs such as food, clothing and housing became even more difficult to acquire.

A REQUEST FOR HELP WAS HEARD BY PAUL BRANDER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT FOR THE EMCC, WHO BEGAN SENDING TEAMS OF STUDENTS FROM ROCKY MOUNTAIN COLLEGE IN CALGARY TO BUILD SMALL HOMES FOR THE WORST DISPLACED AND AFFECTED.

Since 2002, the efforts and initiatives of Paul Brander and EMCC have evolved into what is now known as Shelter Canada. Today Shelter Canada continues to work in El Salvador with missionaries and representatives from the local communities to build relationships and sustainable housing, all in the name of Jesus Christ. With Jesus as the focus, volunteer teams are bringing hope to the poor of El Salvador by providing some of their basic needs with an emphasis on building houses but more importantly, by sharing the love of Jesus Christ while on-mission.