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Santiago, Chile -- With victims of the earthquake

Students from the University of the Andes showed their solidarity with the victims of the earthquake that caused extensive damage in Chile last March.

500 engineering students traveled to Cerro Navia, a city near Santiago damaged by the quake, to help clean up the rubble, analyze building structures, and offer their help to families. Each student was equipped with a shovel, knife, safety boots and gloves.

In addition, a center for the collection of food, water, clothing, sheets, medication and infant supplies was set up in the University library. The donations were sent to the district of Coelemu where three professors were coordinating the relief assistance.

Similar expeditions were organized by university residences and centers for high school students that are corporate apostolic works of Opus Dei. Cristobal Aguilera, a law student from the University of the Andes and one of the organizers of these groups, said that the work of the young people had been intense. They cleared up rubble from ten in the morning until seven in the evening from houses that were destroyed and from a church that had been in the process of being declared a national monument. “My classmates saw the need to help,” he explained. “We ourselves escaped untouched by the quake and this made us thankful for what we had and sensitive to the needs of those who were suffering.” Other groups dedicated themselves to medical assistance.

Romana, No. 50, January-June 2010, p. 164.