In limbo

TS Harvey victims still struggling to recover

As Hurricane Irma churns its way through the northern Caribbean, leaving behind death and hundreds of millions of dollars in damage in some countries, residents of Christ Church who were victims of another weather system three weeks ago, are slowing getting back on their feet.

Several homes in the north and south of the island were extensively damaged when Tropical Storm Harvey affected Barbados on August 18, ripping roofs, windows and doors.

The home of 42-year-old Providence resident Carol-Ann Archer, which had weathered many a storm in the past, including Tropical Storm Tomas, did not survive Harvey unscathed, as the roof was blown away and the sides of the house collapsed.

Providence resident Carol Ann Archer.

Three weeks later her family is still separated and trying to rise about the rubble.  “We got the outside up and the roof on. That’s basically it. We have just been coping with the situation as it is, trying our best until we get better,” Archer told Barbados TODAY during a visit to the community this morning.

“I’m over by my mum, but husband and sons stay here. We had a little assistance with the roof and a donation was given. Our floor still needs to be fixed and other stuff, but we do little by little as we can manage.”

The mother-of-four said she had lost the majority of her home appliances, as well as clothing. However, she said her son would be ready for classes when the new school year begins on Monday.

“We didn’t do a total of the cost but my stove, fridge, television, everything in the house was damaged. Only the washing machine wasn’t damaged. There are no windows or anything.

“We managed to get my son’s school stuff, so he is almost ready; just needs one or two minor things and that’s about it,” Archer added.

Despite her loss Archer remained thankful that her situation was not worse.

“God is our provider. He is God. He will make all things beautiful in His time and I will keep my eyes fixed on the Lord. He allows things to happen as He sees fit.”

A short distance away, 64-year-old Cardinal Jones, who lives alone, was nailing together pieces of wood that had fallen off his home during the passage of Tropical Storm Harvey.

Sixty-four-year-old Cardinal Jones is in desperate need of help after Tropical Storm Harvey.

A number of galvanize sheets could still be seen on the ground near his home, and Jones told Barbados TODAY he was desperately in need of help.

“None of the galvanize didn’t come off the roof, but the house want repairing badly. Right now I have to do a lot of patching up with the hurricane season,” he said.

“People come around and I show them the paling that is down and they tell me they would come back and give me assistance . . . . I don’t work now.”

The Providence Methodist Church was also severely damaged by the storm, and today employees of Niccolls and Edghill Construction Limited could be seen working diligently, tearing down further in order to build up again.   

Workers from Niccolls and Edghill Construction Limited repairing the Providence Methodist Church.

“This morning we came to take down the other part of the roof that was damaged . . . . The damage was really bad. We are doing demolition and to finish that it’s going to take three days,” Location Supervisor Lynton Fraser said, adding that the project would cost “a couple hundreds or even thousands” of dollars.

The community spirit was alive in Providence and Parish Land immediately after the storm as gangs of young men came to the rescue of the neighbours, much to the delight of Wilfred Abrahams, the Barbados Labour Party candidate for Christ Church East.

“After the storm it was actually heartening, because the community came together. We often say that we have to be our brother’s keeper, but that was very evident there in Providence and Parish Land where everybody just helped fix the houses that were damaged,” the Opposition politician told Barbados TODAY.

“We often get negative publicity but I was heartened by the public outpouring of support for the community. We were able to assist some of the residents through manpower, building materials and accommodation. I think we should take our hats off to the residents for coming together, especially in that time after [the storm],” Abrahams said. 

Sheets of Galvanize still on the ground three weeks after the passage of TS Harvey.

8 Responses to In limbo

  1. Julia Robinson
    Julia Robinson September 7, 2017 at 9:40 am

    Question, why is she waiting on the government to help her? Not sure how it works in Bdos but here in the US, we have insurance. If a storm comes along and damage my house and household items, I call the insurance company and they cover the cost of the damage. Government has nothing to do with it. Please explain!

    • Faye Broome-Webster
      Faye Broome-Webster September 7, 2017 at 10:35 am

      you can only call an insurance company if you have insurance

    • Kevin Watson
      Kevin Watson September 7, 2017 at 11:27 am

      Then being in a hurricane belt the government should make it law to have insurance…same way as vehicles

  2. milli watt September 7, 2017 at 10:21 am

    I could understand the others but Providence got to get a refund from who ever did that job for them

  3. Roger Headley September 7, 2017 at 10:32 am

    They wait on the government because that is what MPs have done to the society – a society of beggars – a welfare state

  4. Honest September 7, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    Clearly that house was NOT insured. You guys have no idea of her financial position. The government of Barbados has a responsibility to assist the poorer citizens of the country. We the middle-class pay taxes for such things. Im not encouraging slackness, but, there are some people in our society who need help.

    • Roger Headley September 7, 2017 at 12:24 pm

      I agree with you 100% but does not change what I said. I deal with persons who, from the state of their homes appear to need help but in too may cases it is all about priorities. They will struggle to buy $250 bags for children to take to school but will not struggle to pay house insurance. Have a good talk with teachers and you may get a better picture. The poor will always be with us.

  5. star September 7, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    were did she say she is waiting on the goverment???


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