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Oct 9, 2014

Heavy Rains Destroy Home in the City

A family of five is without their house tonight after heavy rains and winds lashed the City on Wednesday night. This morning just before seven o’clock, their small wooden house collapsed under the feet of Dawn Phillips and her daughter; other family members were not at home. It is the second time that Phillips will have to rebuild because three years ago, her previous dwelling suffered similar damage. Phillips’ plight is a stark reminder of the concentrated poverty and lack of adequate infrastructure in the south side of the City. Duane Moody reports. 


Duane Moody, Reporting

A family of five is tonight homeless after the two-bedroom wooden structure they called home collapsed and shattered. The sheets of zinc and wooden posts, household appliances, furniture and personal belongings that you can see are parts of the home where Dawn Phillips, her husband and three of their children lived for over two years until just before seven o’clock this morning. Phillips and her ten year old daughter were inside the house when it collapsed into the pool of water that accumulated from the constant rains.


Dawn Phillips

Dawn Phillips, Owner of Collapsed House

“About around like minutes to seven soh, I get up this morning and I open my kitchen window and when I open the window, I just feel like a hard breeze like something like weh just broke in everything. And like I was shocked and I say dah weh the world di come to noh. And I was really surprised and then the flooring just broke in with me and then the door, the window and everything just crumble…zinc and everything just crumble on me and my daughter. I just hear and myself the bawl out fi help, fi help. And my neighbors and everybody just deh out fi me and come out fi me.  I lost everything…everything gone. I noh have nothing on mi body only this clothes weh I got on and I di ask di public if dehn could give me wah lee hands out with whatever they can handle we out with.”


Phillips is overwhelmed because she rebuilt her house just two years ago. In December 2011, her house and all her belongings collapsed at the same location. According to Phillips, she has been living on McKenzie Lane for over fourteen years. Her wooden house and many others were built mostly on swamp land.


Dawn Phillips

“Yes sir, I was frightened because this happened to me already. my house dropped down the twenty-ninth of December 2011 and now this morning, today dah the ninth of October 2014. So I due to concern the weather last night due the crumbling of my house.”


Duane Moody

“Luckily, you weren’t injured…”


Dawn Phillips

“Yes sir. Thank god to the almighty I never get hurt, me and my daughter…you know and we safe right now.”


The incident sheds light on the deplorable conditions in which residents in the area live. The level of poverty is appalling and the lack of infrastructure in these communities in south side Belize City make life even more difficult. The rainy season brings additional problems that are yet to be addressed by anyone, including the elected area representative.


Clifford Anderson

Clifford Anderson, Son of Dawn Phillips

“Wah young man ride dah back ah my areas and come tell me that my ma house just drop down with them in there. So I just jump up out of my bed and shoot dah front fi see weh di go on and when I reach dah back yah so, dah this I see di go on. I noh really happy about the situation because we di ask long time fi help fi my old lady. I noh really need no help, but I want my ma get help, but we noh di get no kinda response. We woulda want the minister look out fi we same way weh dah fi around we areas.”


The family is asking for assistance to recover from the loss.


Dawn Phillips

“To be truthful, everything. I need place to stay, I need money, I need food, I need clothing and whatever. I woulda just be glad for the public handle me.”


Duane Moody

“I know you said that you have a young daughter that is going to school and she was unable to go to school today.”


Dawn Phillips

“Yes sir, she di go dah Salvation Army School and she deh ina standard four. I mi di send ahn this morning, but due to these circumstances, I noh send ahn again. So I just want the teacher who sees this news to just have mi back.”


Clifford Anderson

“We woulda appreciate anybody weh coulda handle wi with any lee thing weh dah board, two-by-four, food and thing and thing same way. But we woulda really appreciate wah lee thing same way because that dah weh we need. By the grace of the almighty savior we will get help.”


Duane Moody for News Five.


If anyone would like to assist Phillips and her family, she can be contacted at 661-8597. 

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Heavy Rains Destroy Home in the City”

  1. CEO says:

    Will Belize ever get any minimum building standards. When we do there will be much less loss of life and property.

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