Brooklyn rallies to help St.Vincent residents displaced by volcanic eruptions


More people with ties to the Caribbean island of St. Vincent live in Brooklyn than any other place in the world, according to the Consul General of St. Vincent; so when a volcano erupted on St. Vincent last Friday, thousands of Brooklynites reached out to family members and loved ones to see if they were all right.

Now, with a second eruption Sunday, local Caribbean leaders have organized relief efforts.   

“We will get through this together,” Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said at a news conference.    

Adams was wrapped in the flag of Saint Vincent and surrounded by local Caribbean leaders as many described the devastation of the Caribbean island after its first volcano eruption 41 years.

“Those areas are like ghost towns, silent as a grave,” Howie Prince, consul general of St. Vincent, told PIX11 News. “Monetary donations are needed. It’s going to cost the government a pretty penny to keep shelters open to provide all the services required.”

The volcano, known as la Soufriere, erupted for the first time since 1979 on Friday, covering the Caribbean island with a white ash that some described as looking  like a winter wonderland.           More than 16,000 people in the red zone closest to the volcano had to be evacuated to shelters.

The power and water supplies have been cut off to most of the island.

“It’s not just going to be this month, but a few months before they get back to normalcy,” Shanita Scotland, chair of Mexican Professionals on a Mission, told PIX11 News. Scientists warned that eruptions could continue for days, or even weeks, so the need for donated supplies keeps growing.

Donations can be dropped off at Brooklyn Borough Hall during the week and next weekend at the Friends of Crown Heights, 671 Prospect Place in Crown Heights.

“They need blankets, buckets, food items. And we can ship them to St. Vincent’s and the Granadines,” Laverne Thompson, spokeswoman for the Council of St. Vincent, told Pix11 News. 

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