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Learning lessons from disaster recovery: the case of Honduras
The Honduras study was conducted during September and October 2002 as part of the lessons learned after major natural disasters review of five countries, carried out by the ProVention Consortium. It comprised a field mission and a community survey. This is the first review of recovery in Honduras that examines all sectors.
Hurricane Mitch was an exceptional event. It hit Honduras (and other areas of Central America, especially Nicaragua) from 25 October to 1 November, 1998. The hurricane remained static over the isthmus for days,resulting in the largest natural disaster experienced in Honduras in recent memory. Honduras was particularly vulnerable to its effects because of environmental degradation (such as deforestation), rapid population growth,inadequate infrastructure (especially for flood management), and massive disparities in the distribution of wealth, which resulted in extremely vulnerable living conditions for the poorest. Economic losses were estimated at some US$4 billion. The country was vulnerable and unprepared in terms of policy, systems, and resources for rapid recovery.