A St. Lucian family is seeking financial assistance from the public after their three-year-old son sustained second-degree burns in a kitchen accident on October 6, 2019 in Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands (BVI), according to media reports.
Michael Charles, who turns four on November 15, was severely burned after a pot of water boiling on the stove spilled on him, according to a post on GoFundMe, which is raising funds for the boy.
The child has been admitted at Peebles Hospital on Tortola, BVI, according to Virgin Islands News Online (VINO).
“On 10/6/19, he was playing at home like any typical child,” the GoFundMe page stated. “Michael was watching television but went into the kitchen after his mom stepped out briefly to check on the new baby. There was a pot of water boiling on the stove and somehow, Michael got a hold of it, causing all the hot water to fall onto him, causing him severe second degree burns.”
However, in a VINO report, the child’s uncle, Benjamin Mathurin, gave a different account of what occurred. He was quoted as saying: “He was running, missed a fall and hit the stove which had water boiling to prepare a warm bath.”
Just over 50 percent of Michael’s body was burned and the family requires urgent financial assistance to get the operation done in Trinidad, plus the cost of travel — and the hospital requires a downpayment before the surgery can be done, the GoFundMe statement said.
“The family recently lost a lot in the hurricanes that hit the Caribbean recently… Medical insurance is not an option as it is not something that is used in the British Caribbean islands,” the GoFundMe statement added.
Mathurin has also reached out to the public on social media, requesting donations.
Mathurin said in a Facebook post: “I don’t usually do this but my nephew was burnt with hot water which resulted in 2nd-degree burns and is in critical condition. He has to be taken to Trinidad for care immediately I ask the public for help I know a lot may say it’s not their concern but he is only a kid anything you can donate will be greatly appreciated.”
VINO has reported that Michael’s mother, Vernessa Charles, has raised about $4,000 and that the transportation cost is $23,737. The newspaper further reported that a deposit is required before the child can leave the BVI which is 20 percent of the transportation cost.
The family said the cost of the child’s treatment is expected to be much higher.
According to VINO, Mathurin can be reached by calling him on +1 (758)-284-9589 or Michael’s parents on +1 (284) 343-3166.
Donations can be made at Scotiabank account number, 108001038.