“I followed a group of motorcyclists who went to help communities that aid trucks couldn’t reach”
Pedro Serra is a journalist and blogger in Rio de Janeiro. He sent us this video report he made while participating in rescue efforts in Teresopolis.
Teresopolis is a city in the mountains above Rio de Janeiro. I know it well, because I spent a lot of time in there as a child.
I would say that the level of destruction I saw there after the mudslides is comparable to the footage I saw of post-earthquake Haiti or the 2004 tsunami. I saw cars, and entire houses, completely destroyed by the force of the water. Huge boulders were displaced by the slide, crushing everything they encountered.
It’s really very sad to see all the broken families, the children left orphaned, parents who have lost their children. Even if you watch hours of reports on television, you can’t really grasp the extent of the suffering and destruction. You have to go there.
I witnessed a huge surge of solidarity after the destruction and wanted to focus on it in my report. Ordinary people were volunteering, donating, making huge efforts to go to places that rescue teams had not yet reached, to try to help. I saw rich people and poor people working together to gather donations. I followed a group of motorcyclists headed to places aid trucks couldn’t reach. The level of devastation we witnessed was breathtaking. In my video report. I wanted to show the good that can come out of a crisis.”