Roseau, Dominica (6 March 2018) — High level representatives from the Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica, the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) conducted site visits on March 5, 2018 to the Princess Margaret Hospital, the Woodbridge Bay Port, the Dublanc Health Center and a home in Colihaut to examine the progress of roofing repairs.
The visit takes place as Dominicans are starting to reap benefits in sturdier roofing from US$3 million worth of roofing materials through the China-funded project, implemented by UNDP with national counterparts. Since the beginning of the year, approximately 840 cubic metres of roofing material have arrived in Dominica. The roofing repairs are scheduled for completion by the end of June 2018. In the immediate hurricane aftermath, the Government of China also offered US$800,000 to support efforts to build back better.
Acting Prime Minister and Minister for Planning, Economic Development & Investment the Honourable Dr. John Collin McIntyre, expressed the Government of Dominica’s gratitude for this generous donation which represents the continuation of a strong friendship between the two countries.
Ambassador Lu Kun of China expressed that his Government attaches great importance to this project, and that they chose to collaborate with UNDP given its professionalism and experience in early recovery.
Building back better
A countrywide Building Damage Assessment led by UNDP in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria has revealed that 19 percent of all residential buildings in Dominica were destroyed, 26 percent suffered major damage, 29 percent suffered minor damage and 27 percent minimal damage.
“As part of the UNDP’s Build Back Better approach, we are promoting disaster-resilient communities, and this means ensuring that critical buildings such as health centers can survive the worst storms,” said UNDP Resident Representative for Barbados and the OECS, Stephen O’Malley, thanking the government of China for the contribution to this approach, particularly urgent in view of the next hurricane season a few months away.
Photos: Zaimis Olmos/UNDP
At the Princess Margaret Hospital, where work is being supervised by the Ministry of Health and the Environment, the buildings being repaired are the Nursing Hostel/Project Management Unit, the Acute Psychiatric Unit and the Dialysis Unit. The works are currently at 60 percent completion.
The repairs to the Dublanc Health Center are being managed by the Ministry of Health in partnership with the Americares Foundation. The health centers in Woodford Hill, Calibishie, Dos D’Ane, and Warner are also benefitting from this partnership.
UNDP has partnered with the Ministry of Housing, Lands and Water Resource Management and other international aid organisations IsraAid, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Caritas and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to repair the roofs of the homes of over 600 vulnerable households.
The relevant Ministries are overseeing repair works with support from Engineers Without Borders (EwB), a civil society organization that has been key in training over 350 local contractors on building standards. EwB has also contributed to the revision of the Guide to Dominica’s Housing Standards in collaboration with the UNDP and the Ministry of Planning, Economic Development and Investment.