Wednesday, February 02, 2005


Somehow with the tsunami disaster that has struck South East Asia this disaster a bit closer to home, in the Caribbean, has slipped under the radar.

Over the past five weeks the coastal areas of Guyana, a Caricom country on the South American mainland , has been inundated with rains leaving flooding which has affected over 300 thousand persons (numbers rising) or 39% of the country's population. The country has received over 40 inches of rain in January, five times the average amount.

Severe flooding has affected some of the most populous areas of the country such as the regions of West Demerara/Essequibo Islands, Demerara/Mahaica, Mahaica/West Berbice, and the capital city of Georgetown. If there is no further rainfall, the flood waters will take between 30 and 39 days to dissipate. However further rainfall is predicted.

Although many lives have not been lost, millions of dollars have been lost in crops and livestock and millions of dollars worth of damage has been done to homes and personal belongings. Many have been displaced from their homes and as with such disasters there is a threat of the outbreak of Dengue and other diseases due to the breeding of mosquitoes in stagnant pools of water.

International relief has been extremely poor and slow to this cause, including the response by other Caribbean nations. Granted the Caribbean isn't the richest region in the world and is still recovering from the devastation wrought by Hurricane Ivan last summer but still considering our connections to Guyana, the response so far can be termed poor.

I have no clue at the moment what's being done to raise funds to help these folk but if anyone knows of any relief agencies who are collecting on their behalf feel free to give in order to help out our Guyanese bredren.


Melody said...

Eddie Grant (Electric Avenue) has been reachin' out to CARICOM concernin' de disaster in Guyana, an' ah heard that they'd be settin' up some sort ov fund to which everyone could contribute--still no word on where that stands. Jdid, when prime minister PJ donated to Tsunami relief, some J'cans came down hard on him. "Look how we poor, an' we still sufferin' after Ivan, but you givin' foreigna our tax money!" Such was de embarrassin' response, many would've preferred to raise funds on their own by telethon, etc., an' give what they felt they could afford. Then again, some blasted PJ for givin' asylum to Haitian refugees as well. Maybe he's scared to squeeze a few bucks to Guyana, or maybe he's doin' so under de quiet. Global media played down de Tsunami's effects in Africa, an' Guyana is bein' similarly overlooked.

Campfyah said...

Guyana got caught between rock and a hard place with this natural diaster. We small CARICOM island are always overlooked. But the government has appealed for international help (whether they will get it I don't know)and I'm sure that the other CARICOM governments on a whole will do something to help. You must remember that Guyana, to the super powers that be have no international interest. It's not strategically located and they have nothing that the super powers are interested in, so accordingly the attitude is, what profit do we get from helping you. Sad analogy, but true.

Scratchie said...

I agree with both Melody and Campfyah. Guyana needs help unfortunately the international voice is at a whisper level. They have nothing to gain by helping out so the prospects are dim. I do hope they get help. I would hate to think that Jamaica would need assistance and everybody turn a blind eye.

gonebabygone said...

Here's a link Jdid

gonebabygone said...

Don't know why my post from earlier didn't show up but I'll try it again. I found a site for relief efforts:

Hope this helps!

Abeni said...

Jdid,CC has a link on the front page.Guyana does seem to be not getting plenty coverage even at Cbean level.I don't think I heard of any relief drive here.Will check it out

Anonymous said...

There were some newspaper articles here about Guyana. But I have to agree, it really wasn't much in the forefront. Bwoy, the weather just adverse everywhere! Indication that we mashing up planet Earth?? Dr. D.

Anonymous said...

Good spot, Jdid! I will donate sup'm next month to the Guyanese Flood relief Organisation, because me well bruck now!
Doc, you right about that 'what we are doing to the earth' question! Some feel we soon won't be able to right the wrongs we are doing! I might just blog about this soon... not that it'll help, of course. :-(

Mad Bull

Jdid said...

melody, you cant really blame the caribbean people in a sense because the resources scarce and we've had alot of natural disasters the last few months

camp, i was also reading that since guyana firmly took aristide side in the haiti issue the US aint really care ta really help them

scratchie its pretty sad the way things going

fishy, abeni thanks for the links

dr d the earth gone crazy. too much foolishness we do with the pollution and such

thanks mad bull. i'm looking to donate a lil something as well.