Category Archives: COVID-19

PRESS RELEASE: REBUILD DOMINICA DONATES FACE MASKS TO MEDICAL PERSONNEL AND FIRST RESPONDERS ON DOMINICA

 

First responders on the Commonwealth of Dominica will soon benefit from a new supply of face masks donated by the US non-profit Rebuild Dominica. The 6000 masks, costing about $10,000 USD were gifted to Rebuild Dominica by the Caribbean Disaster Relief & Recovery Alliance of which Rebuild Dominica was a founding member. According to CDRRA Treasurer Loughton Sargeant of St. Kitts, “Rebuild Dominica was an early member of the CDRRA which was formed to assist our region in 2017 after Hurricane Irma struck St. Thomas and Tortola.

Now COVID-19 is on the rampage we have to heighten awareness of safety measures and so we are happy to aid our home islands to ensure our people remain safe.” The Chief Administrator for Rebuild Dominica Major Francis, former Commandant of the Dominica Cadet Corps stated in response to the donation, “This fine gesture towards the people of Dominica is most welcomed at this time. We are determined to keep the rate of infection on Dominica low and we promoted the use of sneeze shields early on. Now with this donation we can make sure our nurses, fire fighters and emergency medical technicians and police have protection against this pernicious virus. We thank Loughton Sargeant and the CDRRA for acting in the best spirit of Caribbean unity.”

According to Rebuild Dominica Medical Director Dr. Sam Christian “We believe in the science of masking and other elements of hygiene to fight this Covid 19 pandemic and are gratified that our Caribbean Diaspora is rallying to the cause of the public health emergency in the region.”

Rebuild Dominica wishes to thank the CDRRA, its members, supporters, allies and boosters for this generous gift to the people of Dominica.

DEFEATING COVID 19

by Gabriel J. Christian, Esq.

 

DEFEATING COVID 19: Dominica-born scientist, Dr. Swinburne Augustine leads groundbreaking research in COVID-19 and other environment-associated diseases at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

 

It is emblematic of our island’s inability to secure the fruits of its human resource harvest that I only knew of Dr. Swinburne Augustine this year– even though we attended high school around the same time in Dominica. I wish to thank the management and staff of Q95, and the “Global Voices on Q” program initiated and moderated by Sheridan Gregoire for presenting such an illustrious son of the soil on a March 2020 COVID-19 panel discussion aimed at educating our population about nascent COVID-19 global pandemic caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

Swinburne Augustine was born in Delices, Dominica in 1962, the son of Victor Augustine and Paulina Eloi. His father, Victor, became a Certified Management Accountant with the Canadian Government in Toronto after graduating from the Saint Mary’s Academy (SMA) and University in Toronto. Paulina was a domestic worker and later a restaurant attendant in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Swinburne attended the Delices Primary School which was next to his home. His grandfather owned the only mill in the village to make farine from cassava and toloma from the arrowroot plant. Farine and toloma were food staples in our diet in those days.

 

READ MORE via Dominica News Online by clicking below!

A Warm Tribute to the Dominica Fire & Ambulance Service for Its Role in the COVID-19 Pandemic

The headquarters of the Dominica Fire & Ambulance Service hosted a brief but special ceremony at 0900 hours sharp on Wednesday April 22, 2020. It was in honour of the valiant first responders under the auspices of Fire Chief Josiah Dupuis. Deputy Chief Letang chaired the proceedings. Everyone was orderly, appropriately masked and maintaining social distancing.

A Salute to our First Responders: Dominica State College Professor Trudy Christian handing over plaque of appreciation to Dominica Fire & Ambulance Service Chief Josiah Dupuis. The plaque was in memory of Dominica Fire Brigade Station Officer Wendell Mckenzie Christian (1921-2011).

Organized by the Christian family of Dominica, the tribute was held in the memory of Station Officer Wendell Mckenzie Christian, LSM who served nobly from 1954-1981 in Dominica Fire Brigade; as it was called then. Dominica State College Professor, Trudy Christian, presented a commemorative plaque on behalf of the family. Her father, the late Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr. Wellsworth Morrison Christian, was the first son of Station Officer Christian.

Also in attendance, and providing introductory remarks, was leading fireman, Malcolm Christian, now seconded to the Office of Disaster Management. Retired Station Officer, Oscar Coipel, gave his personal account of the commitment & camaraderie engendered by “Papa Zafa.”

Dr. Samuel Christian offered a historical perspective: “Our father was a soldier in World War II, later a policeman at Fort Young which was then police headquarters, and ended his career in public service as a fireman at this very headquarters. He was dutiful to the Brigade till the end. He is fondly remembered by fire service veterans as one who did his duty, and shared freely of his time, knowledge sharing in fostering mentorship of younger officers.”

“Our Dad told us of the famous fires he fought such as the Hotel Paz blaze and the old Roseau Hospital fire,” continued Dr. Christian. “His most memorable story was when, as Station Officer on duty, he led fire service onto King George V Street on Carnival Monday 1963 to rescue revelers who had been burnt in the tragic carnival fire which killed Eric Shillingford, Eddie Martin and George James.”

That tragedy is vividly chronicled in the pages of ‘Death by Fire‘ by Mr. Gabriel Christian (co-authored by Justice Irving Andre in Canada) who was able to directly provide a well-received long-distance motivational message to the rank & file of the Service.

Dr. Christian touted emergency personnel as the “tip of spear” amongst frontline workers currently battling the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic. He ended by expressing a commitment on behalf of his family and the nonprofit organization he serves, Rebuild Dominica Inc., to render future assistance to the fire service. In accepting the plaque, Chief Dupuis saluted the legacy of Station Officer Christian, welcoming the continued support by fellow Dominicans at home and abroad for the fire service, police and the full spectrum of healthcare workers.

In a display of gratitude for their efforts, a pizza treat prepared by Perky’s Pizza was provided to the Fire & Ambulance Service personnel.

(Photo & Video Credits: Mjr. Francis Richards)