Posted: Sunday, November 6, 2022. 8:27 a.m. CST.
By Aaron Humes: Government agencies, led by the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO), are working hard on various aspects of restoring normalcy to areas affected by Hurricane Lisa.
NEMO announced that the coordination of relief funds for humanitarian aid will be provided by his office through an emergency allocation from the government, to cover emergency food and supplies for the most affected families. In the medium term, funds, including the rental of emergency housing for displaced families, will be allocated to the Ministry of Human Development, Family and Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs. Self-contained Small Accommodation Assistance and Grocery Bag Assistance will be rolling out soon. After receiving the initial situational assessment report from the NEMO Foreign Assistance Committee led by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Caribbean Development Partners Group met on Saturday and pledged its unwavering support to Belize. Our neighboring countries and close allies such as Taiwan have pledged their unwavering commitment to the country’s recovery effort.
In the area of utilities, electricity and water should be fully restored within a day or two, although Belize Electricity Limited has advised that there may be outages in restored areas while areas not restored are being processed. A 95% recovery has been reported across Belize District, with only the worst affected areas remaining to be treated.
Seven shelters remain open with 161 people; four in Belize City with 126 people and three in Belize Rural with 35 people. 112 people assessed by the Relief and Supply Committee received food; 568 people have been assessed for assistance.
Schools are expected to reopen on Monday, November 7, 2022. Firefighters are helping to sanitize schools and the Ministry of Human Development is preparing to house displaced families. The medical service vigilantly monitors water and vector risks. Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital is closed to elective surgery.
In the area of cleanup, on Saturday, the NEMO-supported City Emergency Management Organization (CEMO) launched the largest single Belize Defense Force contingent ever deployed to a task. The private sector-backed Ministry of Infrastructure Development and Housing (MIDH) is providing pro bono work with dump trucks and backhoes, and a massive 72-hour clean-up campaign in Belize City. 125 dump trucks loaded with debris were removed from the streets.
The population is asked to be patient while waiting behind the heavy equipment involved in the clean-up in order to avoid accidents and to separate debris such as trees and branches from household waste. MIDH is also working in 26 rural communities across the country to clean roads and streets.
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