How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

L.A. relief efforts for Central American flood disaster underway

Photo by Oscar Rivera/AFP Getty Images

View of a flooded road in Ciudad Arce, El Salvador, October 16, 2011

Hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced by the disastrously heavy rains that have soaked Central America in the past week, causing flooding, landslides and close to a hundred reported deaths at last count. Worst hit has been El Salvador, where broken levees along the swollen Lempa River have caused destruction not seen since Hurricane Mitch in 1998.

In Los Angeles, home to the largest population of Salvadorans outside of El Salvador, relief efforts have gotten underway. Several Central American immigrant organizations were planning to meet this afternoon to discuss relief plans and have already been in contact with several NGOs that are collecting money for flood relief, said Marvin Andrade, executive director of the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) near downtown Los Angeles.