Hundreds of Antiguans and Barbudans from the Greater Toronto Area met on the weekend at the Jamaican Canadian Centre in Toronto where an ” information session” was held to provide an update about the situation in Barbuda, hard hit by Hurricane Irma, and relief efforts were discussed.
The meeting was organized by the Antigua and Barbuda Consulate General and the Antigua and Barbuda Association of Toronto.
Eric Delfish, public relations officer of the Antigua and Barbuda Association of Toronto, told the Caribbean Camera that a ” needs list ” of “priority items” for people from the affected area was discussed at the meeting. Included on the list are foodstuff (dried and canned), first aid kits, toiletries, disinfectant, flashlights, batteries, baby clothes (new), pillows, sheets and blankets.
The Consulate General of Antigua and Barbuda in Toronto has announced that donations for the relief efforts can be dropped off at the following locations:
Additional drop off points will be announced shortly.
The Consulate General has also announced that financial donations can be made to the Antigua and Barbuda Emergency Relief Fund at any branch of the Royal Bank of Canada (Transit Number: 06402 – Account Number: 1005040)
On September 6 last, Hurricane Irma severely damaged more than 90 per cent of all buildings in Barbuda and demolished approximately 30 per cent of all homes on the island. The following day the government of Antigua and Barbuda declared a state of emergency in Barbuda and issued a voluntary evacuation order.
According to a news release from the Antigua and Barbuda government, the declaration of a state of emergency was necessary for the government ” to protect life and property there and to allow authorities to carry out necessary work for the immediate safety of the island and its rehabilitation, including the attraction of disaster relief from the international community.”
The state of emergency does not apply to Antigua ” where normal life proceeds as usual, including the functioning of the airport and ports, government business, commercial activity, and social activities,” says the news release.