Tag Archives: homes

The Home Of Jose

Continued from : A Tornado In Havana

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Just down the street from Rolando, we met Jose who also wanted to show us the tornado damage to his home.

Jose had worked laboriously to remove all the rubble from his home, but we could see where walls were missing.

Many of the rooms were now open to the elements.

The Home of Rolando

Continued from ” A Tornado In Havana”

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Rolando saw us walking in the street and motioned to us. “Come into my home and see the damage”

 

He led us through his home where 12 people were living the night the tornado struck. Luckily, no one was injured here.

Most of the rooms were missing roofs.

 

Some of the rooms were missing walls that had been blown apart.

 

Things that were saved are now covered with plastic sheeting to protect them from afternoon showers.

 

Family members. Some still in shock.

 

Still managing to smile.

A Tornado In Havana

What else can happen to the good people of Havana?  …. a tornado!

On the evening of 2 February, 2019 a tornado formed and touched down in Diez de Octobre. It then raced across Luyano, Regla, and Guanabacoa; all poor barrios of Havana. Three persons lost their lives and almost 300 were injured.

My small group of travelers and I were there one week after the tragic event.

While the government had done a reasonably good job of restoring power and clearing the streets, little was being done to help the people who had significant losses. In fact, it was the churches, not the government who took care of the people. Soup kitchens were set up to prepare donated food, donated clothes were passed out, and shelter was provided those who had lost everything.

Clearing the streets.

 

These men were salvaging parts from this smashed car.

The biggest problem was wooden roofs that offered no structural support. Once the roofs blew away, walls then collapsed either inward or outward.

Of course many concrete roofs collapsed too.

The help offered by the government was to make construction materials available at 1/2 cost. Loans were also offered at reduced rates. Only those families who had money saved could afford to start rebuilding. The average family could not afford to purchase blocks and cement and sand.

Next:  We are invited into the home of Rolando, where 12 people were living the night the tornado struck.

 

 

 

Where They Live – Cira

Cira lived in a rough part of Havana, Barrio Cerro. I say lived because I have learned that she and her 9 year-old son escaped the island. She sold the two room apartment and everything in it and paid for passage to a country in South America. She was upset with her circumstances ….. no job, no money, no hope for her son’s future.

It takes a lot of courage to leave one’s life behind and attempt to start over in a different land. I wish her well.

Someone else will live here now. Probably happy to have a solid roof overhead.

Basically, the apartment is two rooms and a bath with no running water.

A success Story – Part 5

Thanks to generous support from my small group of friends, Kate, Louise, Pam, Matt, Susan, and Robert we were able to continue to support this wonderful family.

Over the past three years other necessities were purchased for this family.

We purchased three new beds and mattresses.

A new semi-automatic washing machine (no more hand-wringing the wet clothes) and paint for the walls. We have also purchased and installed new windows and doors.

The youngest girl needed to have her adenoids removed. This  entailed a costly trip to the hospital which was 60 km away and a stay of two days. The expense of such a trip for the average person is beyond their means. We were able to help.

Smiles

Tayluma has a talent for manicure. It helps her to earn a little money. Whenever I visit, I bring supplies for her.

 

 

 

 

A Success Story – Part 4

Rebuilding  the kitchen.

Because we are able to transfer money to Tayluma, she now did all the buying of materials and the hiring of the workers. This greatly improved her confidence and self-esteem too.

There was no way to clean this area to make it sanitary. We worried about the health of the mother and children.

The wiring was a mess.

A new counter was constructed and tiled.

We bought her new cookware, hot plates, and replaced the refrigerator.

The house was completely rewired.

The children are growing and much happier too.

Many thanks to my friends Kate, Louise, Pam, Matt, Susan, and Robert for providing encouragement, support, and money to help this poor family.

Next – Other improvements

 

 

 

A Success Story – Part 3

Many thanks to my friends Kate, Louise, Pam, Matt, Susan, and Robert for providing encouragement, support, and money to help this poor family.

We build a bathroom.

Before, the toilet had to be flushed with a bucket of water from  these barrels.

Construction has already started here. The piping is in place for the new sink, shower, and toilet.

The shower.

A water tank was installed on the roof.

Outside faucets were added for laundry.

Cell phone images sent to me of the tiling of the bathroom:

Part of the deal when hiring workers is that one has to feed them.

On my next visit I get to see the completed work. For the first time in their lives they have a shower (with HOT water) and a modern bathroom.

Before painting the finished work.

On-demand electric hot water shower.

Next – We rebuild the kitchen.