CARE has always had the policy of providing for the safety of groups and individuals who participate in CARE’s work in southern Honduras. We think it is important, in light of recent media reports, we review our safety focus.
CARE operates in southernmost Honduras, specifically the Department [state] of Choluteca, geographically about as far from the violent northern cities as one can be in Honduras. The region where CARE has had a presence for over 10 years is stable, both politically and culturally. CARE has established a network of support from local mayors and our Honduran Advisory Board, members of which include regional leaders in various professional fields. The respect for CARE in this area has developed through and with the support of these leaders.
CARE has always been proactive with security. In its history of humanitarian work in the towns and villages of the region, there has never been any incident or threat to the safety of those in CARE programs. In our caution and planning, CARE always has an armed, plain clothes, security guard with every group, twenty four hours a day. Our security guards have been carefully screened for reliability and ability, including careful review by trusted Honduran officials of the area.
CARE is an organization that has generated the respect—and the loyalty—of the population we serve. Our presence is warmly welcomed. The area is stable and safe, but we remain committed to the protection of everyone involved in our programs.