April 13, 2021
By Janice Biehn
Volcanic activity that began April 2 at La Soufriere volcano in St. Vincent and the Grenadines continues. On April 8, Prime Minister Gonsalves issued an evacuation order for those in the red zone closer to the volcano to move to shelters.
According to the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), an estimated 20,000 people are displaced, including many women and children. The National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC) is now active, operating 85 shelters and housing 3,586 people. Many evacuees are sheltering with friends and relatives. The National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) has identified urgent need for water, buckets, folding cots, toiletries, blankets, field tents, kitchen utensils and sleeping mats.
Naba Gurung, PWRDF’s Humanitarian Response Coordinator, has been in regular contact with the Anglican Alliance facilitator and Anglican church representatives in the region. Parishes in the neighbouring islands of Grenada and St. Lucia, as well as the seven other dioceses in the Church in the Province of the West Indies, are actively collecting donations and coordinating with their government disaster response mechanisms. PWRDF will issue a $5,000 solidarity grant to support these Anglican initiatives on the ground.
If you are able to support the needs of the people coping with displacement due to the volcanic eruption, please go to pwrdf.org/give-today and click on Emergency Response, or click here, then add “Volcano relief in St. Vincent” to the notes section. You may also call Donor Relations Officer Mike Ziemerink at 416-822-9083, leave a voicemail toll free at 1-866-308-7973 or send a cheque with a memo “Volcano relief in St. Vincent” to 80 Hayden St. Toronto, Ontario, M4Y 3G2.