Progressio's Country Rep for the Dominican Republic and Haiti, Nicolo Schiaparelli, has reported heavy rains and damage to infrastructure across most of the island due to Hurricane Sandy. Progressio's Development Workers have remained in the areas where they work and have not been affected.

Nicolo told us that in the DR, “more than 12,000 people were displaced, and still 100 villages and communities are isolated in the centre and south of the country”. The Dominican Centre for Emergency Operations has reported two more deaths today, adding to the more than 20 lives already claimed by Hurricane Sandy on its path through the Caribbean.

The heavy rain is set to continue over the weekend but the hurricane itself has been downgraded to 'level one'. According to Nicolo, “It is still raining and the country is still under alert, but there are no particular threats. Our DWs and partners, in the areas in which they are working, have not been affected and all of them are fine.”

Our thoughts are with those bereaved by the storm, and with the people and communities who will now have to pick up the pieces after the damage and devastation caused by the storm.

Photo: A scene from one of the bateyes (workers' settlements) - the type of poor community that will be particularly badly hit by storm and flood damage.