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#8584 - 10/07/00 01:16 PM Caye Caulker Relief Drive & Poisonwood
mrdream Offline
We were in Dane & Liddys house by CocoPlum Garden Cafe. Our names are Wendy and Darren Casson. The house is by the airport on back-back street. I Recieved some bad "poisonwood" injuries to my legs and feet. There are quite a few poisonwood trees down and leaves everywhere. So if you are allergic to the tree....stay out of the water. I know poisonwood affects maybe 1 in 20...but the people it affects can be quite bad. There are many local "remedies" that include; vinegar, sugar water, and what I found really effective....gumbolimbo bark and leaves. If you are on the island and having problems with a itchy blister rash and swelling...chances are it is "Chechem" (the local word for poisonwood...spelling?)
"Gumbolimbo" is a local tree...also known as "English Birch." If you can't find it or don't know the tree...ask a local...they are usually growing right beside the poisonwood. You take the bark and leaves and chop them thin. Boil in water like a tea. Make sure the water is clean of poisonwood. Leave all the chopped vegetation in it. Rub the mixture on the effected area and let it dry. You may be green but it will help a great deal. If you get large blisters you should lace them. Make sure the oil that comes out is quickly caught into papertowel or other. Wherever the oil touches your skin the blisters will spread. Do not scratch these blisters as it will spead quickly. Clean your hands with Rubbing Alchohol or Hydrogen Peroxide to stop the spread. The Gumbolimbo will ease the symptoms and itching. If you are close to a doctor...as I am now...you will need to get a steroid Prednisone. It will allow a faster heal. As the doctors explained to me....The blisters and swelling come up because of the H1 and H2 receptors in your body. When the body is being irritated by something like an allergic reaction...the receptors open to allow more blood and cleansing fluids in...This is where the blisters come from....and if left untreated...swelling will occur. A common over the counter "cure" for one of the receptors...(either 1 or 2...I don't recall) to stop these receptors from letting the flow in is Zantac or Immodium. yes...the stomach and ulcer medicine...the other "cure" for the other type of receptor is Benadryl or its other name...Diphenhydramine...Equate is a retail name for it...the use of both of these together curb the swelling and reduce the size of blisters almost immediately. A docter will need to prescribe the steroids but the others are over the counter. I was told to take 2 Benadryl (50mg) three times a day...zantac75 2 pills twice a day. These will give you immediate relief. And then if a doctor is around... 40 mg of the steroid per day for three days and then 20 mg for five days as you must ween yourself off a steroid. I know this all sounds technical but I do not want anybody getting sick from my suggestions as I am not a doctor...but it was extremely effective with me and the poison can drive you crazy with itching and the spreading. Keep off your feet and have them raised above the level of your heart to help the swelling..(if effected...as you will usually walk through the poisonwood water) ...ice wasn't very effective to slow the swelling and if you are on Caulker or other islands without power.... you won't have any ice. I hope this helps....

We are trying to get some supplies sent to Caulker from Canada. I have a uncle who is a Member of Parliment and he will be willing to help with the transport. We have been racking our brains for the items that might not be sent yet...like baby aspirin....immune boosters....diapers...hurricane lamps and lamp oil...water purificaton tablets...etc...
please try to find out some needs of people on Caulker and send along to us. We have spoke to the local newspaper and they are coming over to do a story on a day or two so the sooner the better. With the media coverage we should be able to get some good local support. The media coverage in North America is almost non-existant so maybe will can open some eyes of people here to the problems Belize is having. Anybody get in touch with supply ideas as we can ask specifically from industry here for help.

Hope all is getting better in Caulker and the rest of Belize. Take care all.

Darren and Wendy Casson

p.s. we took some pictures of Caulker and are having them developed so we will post them as soon as we can.

p.s.s. "Consolidated Water"...the new water company on Ambergris and soon to be on Caulker...is producing clean Desal water (from ocean water) on Ambergris right now and it is being destributed by the local firetruck so good clean water is available on Ambergris. Good news...way to go Consolidated Water!!! The company has been personally thanked by the Prime Minister and rightfully so!!! They also chartered a plane and brought in supplies from Grand Cayman.

#8585 - 10/07/00 03:06 PM Re: Caye Caulker Relief Drive & Poisonwood
peggy Offline
Hello Darren and Wendy
I too have lived in Lydie and Dane's House and have many friends on the Caye. I am presently in Canada and would love to be able to chat with you over the phone...so many questions..ie How are Chris and Destino, Dianne, what houses are standing in the back? If this is possible please email be directly at pegmac2@hotmail.com.

#8586 - 10/07/00 03:38 PM Re: Caye Caulker Relief Drive & Poisonwood
Kathy in Canada Offline
to the top

#8587 - 10/08/00 10:28 AM Re: Caye Caulker Relief Drive & Poisonwood

#8588 - 10/11/00 03:45 AM Re: Caye Caulker Relief Drive & Poisonwood
Rosita Arvigo of Ixchel Farms (Panti Trail) near San Ignacio makes a wonderful salve that helps to cure poisonwood exposure. Perhaps she could be persuaded to send a load to the caye. I think they have a radio phone.

#8589 - 10/11/00 12:25 PM Re: Caye Caulker Relief Drive & Poisonwood
mrdream Offline
Chris and Destino are amazing....we had to abandon Dane and Lydie's place on sunday at 4pm...in the middle of the strongest winds...they lost their roof on the main house and also the roof on the small cottage...so we ran across the street to Chris and Destino...we stayed with them for the remainder of the storm...their kids were excellent and their cats were even fine...they were loosing their shingles so darren (my husband) and chris went up on the roof during the eye used plastic and nails and cinderblocks to keep the roof together...we all worked all day together, trying to keep the house dry, and figuring out what we can make to eat...we sure had to be creative!!! Their cafe was under 3 feet of water...but we helped him get it all cleaned up...destino and the kids were going to go stay with some family in the usa for a bit, but when we left on tues from caulker and got out of belize on wednesday...so we aren't sure if destino stayed or what...we are planning on going back as soon as there is power and water...we need to speak with Paul Steel of San Pedro...we had his phone numbers but cannot find it right now...and Chris's number in Caulker is not working yet...if anyone knows his number or speaks with him, Wendy and Darren Casson are still wanting to contact you...he can e-mail us at mrdream@www.caymanjobs.com


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