Rebuilding a life after losing everything in a catastrophe is very often the longest and hardest challenge facing disaster-stricken populations. Once the most dramatic hours of a catastrophe have passed and the rescue teams have withdrawn, the SSVP remains alongside victims to help them restore decent living conditions: rebuilding homes, rehabilitating buildings, schools, sanitation networks, etc. This unseen work – far from the cameras and the public eye – sometimes lasts several years.
Drawing on its field experience, the Saint Vincent de Paul Society runs rebuilding programmes that heavily involve local populations, helping them pay attention to preventive measures to avoid tragedies during future catastrophes. As well as physical reconstruction work, the SSVP’s action also includes various types of support for victims: help maintaining children’s education, disease prevention and medical care, psychological support, etc.