In the late afternoon of 26 April, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador Adriana Mira was received by the Grand Chancellor Riccardo Paternò di Montecupo in the Magistral Palace in Rome.
The talks focussed on the central American country’s government efforts to improve the health system after the Covid-19 pandemic, to develop the educational system, to improve nutrition programmes, to upgrade technology and to combat organised crime.
The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs thanked the Order of Malta and its Salvadoran Association for the numerous health and social care activities it carries out in the country. The Grand Chancellor echoed her by reiterating that ‘the Order of Malta is ready to further strengthen cooperation with El Salvador for the benefit of the population and local communities’. For this reason, it was decided during the talks to open a technical table to reinforce the health and social care centres the Order of Malta manages in the country.
The meeting was attended by the Grand Hospitaller Fra’ Alessandro de Franciscis, the Receiver of the Common Treasure Fabrizio Colonna and the new ambassador of El Salvador to the Order of Malta, Julieta Anabella Machuca y Machuca.
For over 70 years, the Order of Malta’s humanitarian activities in the country have mainly concerned the healthcare sector and assistance during natural disasters. The Order of Malta’s Salvadoran Association runs five health and social care centres where every year some 100,000 patients without financial resources are treated. In addition, the Association donates basic necessities to 105 Salvadoran institutions – such as hospitals, clinics, homes for the elderly, orphanages, schools and parishes – and, in the event of floods or earthquakes, helps displaced people with food and clothing. Malteser International, the Order of Malta’s international relief agency, has intervened in the wake of the earthquakes and floods that have hit the country over the years.