The Programme for the Regularisation Of Unplanned Development (PROUD ) Housing Project led a transect walk through the PROUD sites in Bexon in an effort to identify issues of lack of infrastructural development within those areas.
Key stakeholders attending the walk included the Bureau of Environmental Health, Bureau of Health Education, Department Of Social Transformation, Crown Lands Section of the Ministry of Physical Development, Housing and Urban Renewal; Development Control Authority, and PROUD.
Education and Public Information Manager for the Saint Lucia Solid Waste Management Authority, Emlyn Jean, commented on the issues faced by residents of these areas with regard to waste disposal.
“The difficulty arises through areas where you have no foot paths and is also very far away from the main road so it becomes easier to deal with the waste within the community itself within the area, so that will call for probably dumping in the water way or placing under a tree or whatever little area where these people can get.”
Ms. Jean noted that facilities were not the best in the area and it would take the efforts of both the residents and the aforementioned stakeholders to improve the conditions.
Social Planner for PROUD, Darnelly Estava, explained that PROUD will conduct a number of community meetings to enlighten residents on plans for the further rationalisation and legitimization of squatter settlements.
“The lands will be surveyed off and sold to persons. Persons will now become legitimate land owners and with this legitimacy, comes a certain amount of responsibility, and this is where our internal stakeholders come in because we will need certain things like community groups. We will need proper methods of solid waste disposal, we would need a solid health education background in these communities.”
Ms. Estava disclosed PROUD’s intervention would encompass building roads, installing drains and further infrastructure to access water and electricity.
According to Ms. Estava, PROUD has already commenced interventions in certain parts of Bexon with the development of subsequent areas planned for later this year.