The Afya Foundation, JetBlue, and the Commission of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) are working together to deliver much-needed relief supplies to the people of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
The first in a series of shipments arrived in Saint Lucia on Friday April 23, via JetBlue, for immediate onward shipment to Saint Vincent. The relief supplies include urgently needed items such as face masks, face shields, blankets, gloves, isolation gowns and adult diapers.
Speaking from the OECS Commission in Saint Lucia, Director General Dr. Didacus Jules thanked the organisations for their generous contributions and collaboration to expeditiously get supplies to Saint Vincent.
“The OECS Commission expresses its sincerest appreciation to the Afya Foundation for sending USD$206,000 worth of medical supplies that include adult diapers, face masks and PPE gear. In particular, masks that may be helpful for people with respiratory problems in the face of the volcanic ash in the air.
We are particularly grateful to JetBlue for helping to fly the supplies to Saint Lucia free of cost for the Foundation, and we are now responsible for ensuring that [the shipment] gets to Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in good condition.”
The Director General also expressed thanks to Medical Professionals on the Move and DirectRelief who played a role in helping the OECS to connect with the Afya Foundation.
In a brief statement following the successful first shipment of supplies, Founder and CEO of the Afya Foundation, Danielle Butin, reiterated the organisation’s commitment to provide continued medical assistance to the Eastern Caribbean region:
“It is our honor to support the remarkable work of OECS with Afya’s medical and humanitarian relief supplies. Working closely with OECS and JetBlue, Afya is shipping requested supplies from New York to the islands to aid those in greatest need following the continuous eruption of La Soufrière on Saint Vincent.
We have made a long-term commitment to help bolster and support the medical infrastructure of the Eastern Caribbean States so they can restore and recover.”
Volcanic eruptions began in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines on Friday, April 9, 2021. Two weeks later, sporadic eruptions, accompanied by pyroclastic flows, continue to force residents from the north of the island – the red zone – to seek refuge in shelters and in neighbouring islands.