PRESS RELEASE – Thirteen families, who suffered the loss of or severe damage to their homes as a result of the Christmas Eve Trough, received financial assistance from the Government of Saint Lucia, for the reconstruction of their homes.
At a ceremony held in the Cabinet Room of the Office of the Prime Minister, on August 7, 2014, a total of $194, 000.00 was handed over to the individuals who were selected through the combined efforts of the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) and the Saint Lucia Red Cross.
In his remarks, Prime Minister, Hon. Dr. Kenny D. Anthony, extended his gratitude to the friendly Governments and agencies for their monetary contributions towards the trough rehabilitation efforts. However, the Prime Minister also cautioned that the Government’s response should be seen as a specific response to the recent disaster and not indicative of a new trend.
According to Dr. Anthony, “In some ways the reaction of the government to the Christmas Trough has been unusual. What we have done following that trough may not necessarily happen again. You recall many homes were flooded and persons lost mattresses, kitchen utensils and for the very first time, we reacted by seeking the support of a major contributor, Digicel, to provide us with refrigerators, stoves and even washing machines to assist persons who lost those important household items. We remain deeply grateful to Digicel. This has never happened before. It is not usual for Governments to intervene in this way and to make available kitchen equipment of that kind. I hasten to add that there must not be a continued expectation that somehow, anytime a disaster strikes, the Government will respond in that way.”
While the amount given will not cover the full cost of the damage to the houses, Prime Minister says it is an expression of the Government’s concern for the welfare of its people, particularly the poor and vulnerable.
During the ceremony, the recipients expressed gratitude to the Prime Minister and the Government of Saint Lucia, the donors as well as those who responded in the immediate aftermath of the disaster.
The housing assistance was made possible through the financial contributions of friendly Governments and agencies.