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May 9, 2001
Media Advisory: City to make special appeal for donations to rebuild El Salvador communities
Toronto City Councillor Joe Mihevc (St. Paul's West) will encourage residents
and businesses to rally together to help rebuild the communities of El Salvador
ravaged by earthquakes at a press conference tomorrow to launch the El Salvador
earthquake relief campaign.

Date: Thursday, May 10
Time: Noon
Location: Toronto City Hall, Nathan Phillips Square

"The need for assistance after a crisis remains long after the headlines
disappear," says Councillor Mihevc. "The upheaval has had a devastating impact
on several communities in El Salvador. It is expected to take years of
reconstruction to restore El Salvador to the level of development before the

The City's goal is to raise urgently needed funds to focus on the rebuilding
process. Many people are currently living out of makeshift shelters constructed
out of plastic and canvas.

The City, during a six-week period from May 10 to June 23, will collaborate
with several recognized development agencies that provide disaster relief to El
Salvador. As of May 10, a list of these agencies will be available on the
City's Web site at or by calling Access Toronto at
416-338-0338. Donations will go toward rebuilding schools, hospitals, homes,
roads and bridges, re-establishing farms and providing people with food,
clothing and medical supplies.

On behalf of the Parroquia San Lorenzo Church, Archbishop Terence Finlay of the
Toronto Diocese will kick off the City's campaign by launching Operation Flor
de Izote, the church's largest fundraising effort to date. Flor de Izote is El
Salvador's national flower. The term Operation Flor de Izote was chosen to
symbolize growth, renewal, progress and development. The goal is to send 21
decommissioned school buses filled with supplies to El Salvador by the end of

Fire Chief Alan Speed will speak about the participation of the Toronto Fire
Services, and Jim Lee, President of the Toronto Professional Fire Fighters'
Association, Local 3888, will be on hand to present the San Lorenzo Church with
a cheque for $1,000 to kick start its campaign.

The earthquakes on January 13 and February 13 left 1,159 dead and hundreds of
thousands people homeless.

Media Contact
Christie McLardie
City of Toronto



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