Repair grants for Diego flood victims
Monday, August 20 2012
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A building inspector leaves the house of Eleanor Luke in Carenage yesterday. A retaining wall was damaged in last weekend's floods. ...
Relief efforts continued yesterday at Pt Cumana Community Centre for persons affected by last Saturday’s devastating floods as building inspectors recorded complaints and visited the affected victims of landslides to fast track the procedure for home improvement grants to help them rebuild their homes.
The Ministry of Housing’s Community Intervention Caravan initiative is aimed at allocating grant funding repairs for homes. It covers repairs to cupboards, windows, doors, roof works and floors.
Roopnarine Toolsie, the acting secretary of the Sugar Industry Labour Welfare Committee (SILWC) said the major complaints consisted of external damage to retaining walls and repairs of damaged structures. He said the inspectors for yesterday’s initiative are members of the SILWC. “While the aim was internal, the complaints are more external and some grants may have to be given to remedy the situation,” said Toolsie. He said there were representatives from various ministries to assist with whatever type of damage was reported.
The officials attended to people swiftly as they took information which they forwarded to the building inspectors. The inspectors viewed files and walked out with two sometimes even three residents, at a time, heading straight to the houses to conduct an immediate evaluation of the damage. Eleanor Luke, 58, had her house at Abbe Pougade Street, Carenage inspected.
“My house is floating in the river, I am here to see what help I can get,” Luke said. Her house is on the bank of the river in Carenage which overflowed last Saturday and broke down her retaining wall.
Luke said at her age she cannot accumulate funds to reconstruct the wall. She said her life is far from simple as she has her 14-year-old grand-daughter Shyanne St Bennard, who suffers from Cerebral Palsy, to look after. “I have to be with her all the time, clean her take her for doctor visits every three months and sometimes I can’t always keep up with the visits because of the high costs of hiring a car to take her to the hospital,” Luke said.
Luke said she receives a monthly cheque of $1,100 from Government for her grand-daughter, but she still needs the food card and any other assistance.
The inspecting officer assured her assistance will be given via a grant to reconstruct the wall but he was not able to say how much.