Residents of Kelly Gardens in St Helena are pleading with the authorities to remove the garbage that has accumulated due to their flood clean-up.
Since floodwaters receded earlier this week, the residents have been busy at work trying to regain some semblance of life as they knew it before flood waters invaded their homes last weekend.
The first phase in their cleaning process was to remove all their destroyed memories and possessions which they would have gathered over their lifetimes, and to discard those items in garbage bags at the side of the road outside their homes. However, they have now run out of space to place their now destroyed items.
Kelly Gardens resident Shira O'Brien told T&T Guardian, “The garbage collection is null and void. It's piling up and nobody's coming.
“You seeing the amount of flies coming in? It is horrendous and people are going to get sick.”
Much like other afflicted residents, O’Brien's garbage is stacked high, covering the front of her home and her yard since Tuesday. The pile-up of debris, she said, is now holding back their clean-up efforts.
“We have nowhere else to put anything,” O’Brien said.
Since Tuesday, O’Brien, her three daughters, their friends and families have been working diligently to clean their home so they can begin rebuilding their lives, stopping only at night due to bugs and insects.
Although busy at work cleaning, another resident, Phillip Mohammed, who has been living there for the past five years with his wife and two children, is seeking relocation due to the extent of damage done during the floods.
“I am in the process of making arrangements for relocation from this area…relocation has a process and a time frame. I need to live, I need to get my life back together and obviously I have to go ahead here and hope there isn't another flood,” he said, estimating his losses at over $140,000.
“I don't want to experience this ever again in my life,” he added.
Many other residents expressed concern about the garbage problem, as “it is keeping us from moving on.”
The residents are powering through their pain, however, and are also asking for any assistance they can get in cleaning up their homes.
- by Rishard Khan, Photo by Anisto Alves.