On 9th April 2021, the La Soufrière, a volcano located on the northern side of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, experienced a major eruption. With an estimated 110,589 (2019) population, the country was forced to evacuate persons from the emergency zones into safe shelters. This disaster has resulted in severe displacement for a large section of the population and affected the livelihoods of thousands of persons on the island.
Within this context, the Caribbean Policy Development Centre (CPDC) with support from the Inter-American Foundation (IAF) has provided immediate relief assistance through a small grant. The main objective of this grant was to offer relief support to small farmers and rural households impacted by the La Soufrière Volcanic eruption. In addition, the Windward Island Farmers Association (WINFA) is a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) located in St. Vincent, and the Grenadines was provided with a grant.
The organisation was established in 1982 with a mission “to build a financially independent democratic organisation that champions the cause of farmers and rural communities in the Caribbean, through the provision of programs which address issues such as food security, gender equity, sustainable development, and sector linkages.” The organisation’s main target group is micro and small scale, rural farmers.
The support has enabled WINFA to provide much-needed relief supplies such as food, water and hygiene supplies to approximately 2700 beneficiaries of small farmer’s households. In addition to this, 70 farmers could receive agricultural supplies such as animal feed and protective gear. Through this relief support, the project addressed the immediate needs of small scale farmers and their families for water, food, and personal supplies.