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Nov 7, 2022

A New Roof and a Handsome Donation to Sister Cecilia’s

On Thursday morning when we visited Sister Cecilia’s Home for the Elderly, following the passage of Hurricane Lisa a few hours earlier, we observed major damage to the roof of the single-flat building.  Heavy winds had torn all the sheets of zinc off the structure, exposing the elderly residents to the elements before they were moved over to the dining room of the building.  At the time, there was an appeal to the public to assist with urgent repairs.  Well, a Good Samaritan took on the call and together with his crew of workmen, replaced the entire roof of the house.  This morning, B.W.S. also stepped in with a generous donation to assist the facility with getting back on its feet.  News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Jeff Carpenter

Jeff Carpenter, Good Samaritan

“We were in Orange Walk and we were watching the storm.  The storm could have hit us and we felt that what we could do is give some service to help those that did get hit.  So we were thankful and we thank God for the opportunity to be able to help.”

 

A new roof and ceiling is being built at Sister Cecilia’s Home for the Elderly to replace the upper covering of the building that was damaged during Hurricane Lisa on November second.  Jeff Carpenter, a builder from Orange Walk, saw the destruction and decided that he needed to help.

 

Diana Fuller

Diana Fuller, Chairwoman, Sister Cecilia’s Home

“I would like to acknowledge and publicly thank Mr. Carpenter and his team and also Alton Thompson, one of his workmen, who saw the video that went out and came to help.  So Mr. Carpenter, we couldn’t have done this without you.  They actually put up the roof in two days, believe it or not, could you imagine that.”

 

As we showed you on Thursday, the extent of damage that the convalescent home sustained was massive.  What our viewers saw in the wake of the natural disaster was enough for one company to step in.  Earlier today, Belize Water Services Limited and Minister of Public Utilities, Michel Chebat, gave a donation of fifteen thousand dollars towards renovating and repairing Sister Cecilia’s.

 

Cornelio Acosta

Cornelio Acosta, Chairman, B.W.S.L.

“Immediately, the directors of BWS had gotten in touch via our Whatsapp group and had addressed the concerns saying, “Listen, we need to do something to help the elderly.”  We were invited to do a little walkover, we saw that the roof was being worked on and similarly, we saw various needs that needed to be addressed: the ceiling, some cabinets and some other personal items that were lost.  So, due to that, we sat down, we looked at the list of what was required and decided to come up with a figure to donate to them.”

 

The donation, according to Ivorine Bulwer, will go a long way in getting the facility back to where it was prior to the hurricane.  The unfortunate experience, she says, also brings into sharp focus a need to pay more attention to the plight of the elderly.

 

Ivorine Bulwer

Ivorine Bulwer, Executive Director, HelpAge Belize

“As you may know, HelpAge Belize is all about looking after our older persons and this disaster Lisa came and certainly impacted Sister Cecilia’s Home and it’s also an indication that we have got to pay better attention to this vulnerable population.  Yes, we have these structures but we would want the support, the continued support from government entities to monitor our structures, not only in Belize City but across the country.  The donation that we have received from the Belize Water Services certainly will go a long way and we are very thankful to the Government of Belize and the utility company to provide the support.  It offers us an opportunity also to improve the ambiance of the environment in which we serve the older persons.”

 

Isani Cayetano for News Five.


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