H urricane Katrina damaged beyond repair tens of thousands of homes
and businesses in Mississippi, Alabama and New Orleans and left a
significant amount of people in emergency shelters. Homes have been
completely destroyed and now people are left dependent on others to help
them with the basic amenities such as clothes, food and water. All around
the world, communities have come together to help aid the victims in need of
the devastation left behind by hurricane Katrina.
The American Red Cross and other sister Red Cross
branches are working in full force to try and cater to all victims of the
tragedy. The American Red Cross has launched the largest mobilization of
resources in its history for a single natural disaster. More than two
hundred Red Cross shelters are housing thousands of residents who fled
Katrina's wrath. More than 200 emergency response vehicles and countless
other Red Cross resources are en route or on the scene to provide hot meals,
snacks, bottled water and distribute other much-needed relief supplies.
Belize is no stranger to times of need, but with the little that we have, we
still give out a helping hand to those in need.
The San Pedro Lion's Club has already scheduled a huge
Radiothon in collaboration with the Reef Radio, to aid the victims of
Hurricane Katrina. In an interview with The San Pedro Sun, President of the
Lions Club, Isela Graniel stated, "We are going to go door-to-door visiting
homes and pleading for a contribution or donation. Every cent counts because
those people are really in need." The Radiothon is scheduled for Sunday,
September 11th and will begin at 10:00 a.m. This event will be held at the
Lions Den and the general public is also notified that barbecue and
refreshments will be on sale. All proceeds will go to help fund the relief.
President Graniel ended the interview by stating, "Be aware that today it's
them and tomorrow it could be us, any help will be greatly appreciated."
The Belize Red Cross Society issued a press release
dated September 1st stating the following:
The Belize Red Cross is appealing to all Belizeans, to
show solidarity with these suffering people by making generous donations to
The Hurricane Katrina Red Cross Appeal Fund was
launched today in Belize. Cash donations can be made at any of the following
commercial banks throughout the country. Funds will be sent to the American
Red Cross in Washington D. C. for the purpose of assisting and meeting those
most in distress.
First Caribbean International Bank - A/C# 10028703
Scotia Bank - A/C# 9133246
Atlantic Bank Ltd. - A/C# 210674607
Belize Bank Ltd. - A/C# 5064373
Alliance Bank of Belize Ltd. - A/C# 1919
Please, join the Belize Red Cross in this great
humanitarian effort to relieve human suffering by giving generously.
It is estimated that about 4,000 Belizeans live in the
affected states and efforts are being made to reach as many as possible who
have relocated to the Houston and other areas. The Embassy of Belize in
Washington has set-up an electronic bulletin board from its website
embassyofbelize.org through which Belizeans can establish contact with
family and friends affected by the natural disaster.
The National Immigration and Nationality Services
Department also extended its best wishes to all those affected by Hurricane
Katrina and stated the following:
The National Immigration and Nationality Services
Department would like to inform all Belizeans who have relatives in the New
Orleans and Mississippi area and who are planning to travel home, that the
following arrangements have been made to facilitate their travel.
Any person not in possession of a valid passport,
expired passport, cancelled passport or other forms of identification can
contact the Director of Immigration at the following telephone numbers,
822-2611, 822-2423, or 822-3860.
Particulars of all persons wishing to travel can be
sent to the Immigration Department at fax number: 822-2662.
Every effort will be made to facilitate the entry of
those persons into the country.
Prime Minister Honorable Said Musa also extended his
deepest condolences to both Governor of the State of Louisiana Kathleen
Babineaux Blanco and President of the United States of America George W.
Bush. In both letters Honorable Musa expressed his solidarity and stated the
[.] stand ready to render, within our limited means, any
assistance in partnership with the relief efforts of your Government.
A CNN Breaking News of Tuesday stated the following:
Our thoughts and prayers are with you in this most difficult time.
Please accept, Mr. President, the assurance of my highest consideration.
NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) - New Orleans' mayor ordered
law enforcement agencies Tuesday night to remove everyone from the city who
is not involved in cleaning up after Hurricane Katrina, whether they want to
go or not.
Mayor Ray Nagin instructed all public safety officers, "to compel the
evacuation of all persons ... regardless of whether such persons are on
private property or do not desire to leave," according to a written
statement from his office.
Indeed our hearts go out to all those affected by this
natural disaster and invite the general public to help in any way possible
our fellow men.