I was delighted to receive this reply from an official in Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada in response to a query I submitted last week. In the form email, I respectfully requested aid for Dominica, following the total devastation caused by Tropical Storm Erika on August 27th, 2015:
“The Government of Canada, through [the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development](DFATD), quickly responded to the devastation caused by Tropical Storm Erika in Dominica and has been supporting the emergency response efforts.
Following the disaster, Canada committed $135,000 to the Pan American Health Organization in order to help restore health services and emergency medical in affected areas, improve access to clean water and sanitation and ensure the provision of hygiene supplies.
Canada is also supporting the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) Emergency Appeal for Dominica.
With Canada’s support, the IFRC and the Dominica Red Cross will respond to the immediate needs of over 10,000 people through cash transfers, basic household non-food items, shelter, health and psychosocial support, as well as water, sanitation and hygiene promotion activities.
The Government of Canada committed an additional $50,000 through the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives to provide relief and assistance affected households, as identified by the Government of Dominica.”
While the Canadian government’s contribution to the Relief Effort is greatly appreciated, kindly be reminded that millions of dollars are needed to restore the country to its pre- TS Erika state. The Prime Minister of Dominica, Honourable Roosevelt Skerrit has said that the Nature Island has been set back by at least two decades.
Numerous other countries continue to assist Dominica in its overall recovery, which will be a lengthy and challenging process.
The critical humanitarian situation on Dominica is not going to resolve anytime soon. You can follow developments on the Nature Island through coverage on Dominica News Online.
If we all assist in our own way – be it large or small- then we will be helping to restore the beautiful Nature Island of 70,000 inhabitants to its former renowned natural glory. Thank you!