St. Vincent Support Group, partners collect 60 tonnes of items for St. Vincent

St. Vincent Support Group, partners  collect 60 tonnes of items for St. Vincent

The first shipment of relief after it arrived in St. Vincent on Saturday.

PHILIPSBURG--The St. Vincent Support Group and its partners have collected some sixty tonnes of items, including water, food, medical supplies and other items to help volcano-affected residents of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

  The first shipment of items left the island last week and arrived in St. Vincent over the weekend. This first shipment was made possible thanks to fuel sponsored by Tradewinds Cruise Club.

  The St. Vincent Support Group, led by Clarence Derby, Natasha Wright Derby and Augustus Thomas, had organised a drive where persons could donate items over the last few weeks to be sent to assist Vincentians.

  The group said the drive met and exceeded all expectations with the 60 tonnes of items donated from residents and organisations in the community. The group was requesting relief items such as bottled water, toothpaste, toothbrushes, cereal, deodorant, soap, hand sanitisers, feminine supplies, bath towels, toilet paper, masks, blankets, sheets, pillows, baby wipes, baby formula, baby clothing, diapers (babies and adults), canned foods, sugar, flour, rice, children snacks, batteries, pain killers, adult clothing, shoes/slippers, rubber boots and socks. Boxes were placed at major supermarkets where non-perishable items could be dropped off. The group also had drop-off points (Workers Institute for Organised Labour (WIFOL) Building and St. Maarten Festival Village) where the public could take their donations. “We would like to thank everyone for their support,” the group said.

  “Getting these items to St. Vincent created a major challenge, but soon was solved. The owner Mike McKenzie of the big red boat, which has a capacity of over 35 tonnes, made the boat available to us without charge to transport these items, with the only obligation that we supply the fuel,” the group said.

  With the assistance of Sol Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Robert James, with sponsorship of fuel, the second shipment will be made this week. The boat left St. Vincent on May 2 and is expected to be back in St. Maarten on Tuesday, May 4, and depart with the second shipment next weekend.

  The donation drive was done in collaboration with National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) of St. Vincent and was supported by the Adventist Development Relief Agency (ADRA), Dutch-side Fire Fighters Association, WIFOL, the Caribbean Unity Foundation, the Tradewinds Cruise Club, K1 Britannia Foundation and Alicia Stay Foundation.