St Vincent is suffering a series of explosive volcanic eruptions. Your support is urgently needed for field personnel working on the front line to rescue wildlife and restore vital water supplies and other services to the country.
La Soufriere, a volcano on the Caribbean island of St Vincent, has been erupting repeatedly since early April. It has already destroyed large tracts of forest, forced over 20,000 people to flee their homes and left many more without water or electricity. Thousands of tonnes of toxic, choking ash have rained down across the island, destroying the habitats and food supplies of rare and endemic wildlife. Nobody knows when the eruptions will end or how much further the damage will extend.
Over 100 personnel from the St Vincent & the Grenadines Forestry Department are working tirelessly in the forest to help clear fallen trees, to restore the nation’s water and power supplies and to rescue wild animals, but they lack essential equipment. They need respirator masks, medical supplies, flashlights, walkie-talkies and other tools to work safely under dangerous conditions.
Many of the foresters, along with other local conservationists from St Vincent, are volunteering additional time to search for and rescue the injured and starving animals. They know this is a race against time. Most of the island’s endangered wildlife, including the iconic St Vincent parrot and endemic snake and frog species, lives around the volcano. Parrots and other wildlife are already being brought to the Forestry Department’s care, dehydrated and covered in ash. They are in urgent need of suitable enclosures, food and veterinary supplies.
This catastrophe could not have come at a worse time for a country suffering from the ongoing global pandemic. Only two days before the eruptions began, the Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines announced with regret that the government might soon be unable to afford to pay some wages.
Please help these brave men and women so they can continue their vital work to help the people and wildlife of St Vincent.