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#12152 - 10/11/01 05:53 PM Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 4
BarbG Offline
 
BarbG  Offline
For those of us who may be interested in "coming on down" from the US to help out, is this recommended?

Didn't know if NEMO needed folks for labor-intensive building, etc. or if there are any recommended points of contact for this.

Several of us feel pretty helpless, and really like the hands-on methods in addition to the financial giving.

Thoughts?

Thanks immensely!

#12153 - 10/11/01 06:18 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 32
Bobsorel Offline
 
Bobsorel  Offline
I agree. I feel so helpless here in the states when I want to be helping, hands on in Placencia. I know that the cleanup is going to require many, many hands, and there just aren't enough people in town to do it. In one of the pictures on the Yahoo site, I saw my friend, Norman Leslie, (Do-Do) from the Seaspray hard at work starting his repair. As soon as is practical, I'm heading down to help. I'd like to drive down with a truck full of supplies, but I don't know if the borders are going to present big problems. I think it'd be great if many of the Americans that love Belize show that we're not simply "fair weather friends", but are in it for the long haul

#12154 - 10/11/01 06:22 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 4
BarbG Offline
 
BarbG  Offline
A resounding yes!! I definitely agree -- I am already booked with my husband and family members for a 2-week in March, after having fallen in love with the country last August.

I have two friends who will be moving to Toledo District next week and have been conversing via email about some of the situations there.

I am just so tempted to hop a plane right now, or, at the very least, by Thanksgiving, to do my part to contribute to the local economy. Air fares are excellent right now, too.

#12155 - 10/11/01 06:35 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Sep 2000
Posts: 914
ckocian Offline
.
ckocian  Offline
It would be an exercise in frustration for outsiders to go any earlier than next week, at the earliest. Money, money, money - convenient, portable and directed at obtaining what is needed most.

#12156 - 10/11/01 06:45 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 54
Laurie Beckstead Offline
 
Laurie Beckstead  Offline
I'm going to point something out. Placencia has no services for the people who live there. How would they support extra bodies going in right now? They can't, they can't support themselves.

I know we all want to help, I know we all feel helpless and sad for our friends and families.

Best to probably stay put for now & send money. Money is easy to ship, gets to where it is needed & supplies the things they need the most.

I know typing a few characters to donate money doesn't seem like you are doing a lot, but, really, you are doing the best possible thing for right now.

#12157 - 10/11/01 07:10 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Sep 2000
Posts: 713
susangg Offline
 
susangg  Offline
Here is what the people on the ground are telling us:
If you want to help, send MONEY to the fund that Marty set up. The funds are being used for direct relief, delivered personally to the people who need it most. Or if you know of a similar fund (not the government or a big beaurocracy) where you know the individuals who are running it and what they are doing with it and prefer to send it there.
As for "hands on labor" needed to rebuild: There are thousands of UNEMPLOYED WORKERS in Belize who are available for this effort. They need JOBS. That requires MONEY. The local people need help rebuilding. That requires MONEY.
MONEY will put PEOPLE and WORK together where it needs to be put together.
Really, the best thing you can do is to send MONEY to funds or organizations that will get it DIRECTLY to PEOPLE who need it the most (with no spilling to pol pockets or paper pusher perks).
The only exception to that would be if you are a construction professional experienced in disaster rebuild work and have been asked to help by the people on the ground.
Anybody else will only be a hindrance, not a help.


Susan Guberman-Garcia, Attorney at Law. Phone: 510-792-2639
Fax/Voicemail:: 510-405-2016 Email: susangg@garcia.mpowermail.com
#12158 - 10/11/01 07:38 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 32
Bobsorel Offline
 
Bobsorel  Offline
Just so happens that I was a historical building restoration specialist for 15 yrs.,so I do have a few skills. As a
property owner in Placencia, I also may need to do some clean up. I'm going to wait a bit, but I will go down there, fully self supporting, to help.

#12159 - 10/11/01 08:33 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Jul 2000
Posts: 677
lmarquis Offline
 
lmarquis  Offline
Seems to me that they would need and appreciate a few people like you, Bob.

#12160 - 10/11/01 09:52 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 3
Barbara G Offline
 
Barbara G  Offline
Thanks for all info. We would definitely not wish to be in the way; however, my husband has special skills that may be of use either there or from here on a consultancy basis.
He is a Disaster Preparation and Recovery Manager for the State of Virginia (has worked floods, hurricanes -- Floyd being most memorable/recent in these parts) -- any disaster, either man-made or natural, is his forte. He just returned from Southwest Virginia, working a flood disaster in conjunction with FEMA.

We both are adept at home renovation -- he has roofed, etc. We both have gutted entire rooms and "started over" from scratch, etc.

We're just very "hands on" and wish we could help in some fashion in addition to the financial side of the equation.

#12161 - 10/11/01 11:39 PM Re: Helping!  
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 32
Bobsorel Offline
 
Bobsorel  Offline
I think you and your husband would be helpful and appreciated as soon as things settle down a bit Barb. I wouldn't want to take a Belizean's job but the truth is that I've spoken with MANY builders in the area in the last year and they all said that they have a difficult time finding workers. Perhaps there will be an influx of knowledgeable building personnel from other areas, but Belize is a small country and I'm not sure if there are enough to fill the great need that will follow.

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