Chilean’s home help

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A CHILEAN woman in Queenstown whose mum was caught up in last Saturday’s devastating earthquake is staging a fundraiser for victims. 

Daniela Ibanez’s mother Olga Sturiza was evacuated from her apartment in the coastal city of Vina del Mar, near Santiago, amid fears the shattered building would collapse. 

Ibanez found out about the drama at 8am last Sunday when she turned up for work at Queenstown Airport, where she is a rental car service centre supervisor. 

“One of my colleagues informed me there had been an earthquake in Chile and I got an email from my sister over there telling me my mother had to get out of her home, but that thankfully she was safe and staying with a friend,” Ibanez says. 

“The earthquake happ­­ened on the day of mum’s 61st birthday and I still haven’t spoken to her as the phone lines are still down.” 

Ibanez – who has been in the resort for two and a half years – plans a night of live music and a slide show about her stricken South American home­­land at The Boiler Room in Queenstown next Wednesday. 

“It would be nice to raise some money to send to one of the relief agencies in Chile,” she says. 

“There are an awful lot of people who have been affected a lot worse than my own family and I’d like to be able to help in some small way.”