By Helen Grenade
Caribbean News Now correspondent
NEW YORK, USA — The French consulate in New York hosted a fundraising event last Wednesday to assist and mobilize relief efforts for the victims of the devastation in the Caribbean caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria. At the same time, a telethon was held in Bermuda to raise money for hurricane relief in Dominica, which generated over US$100,000 in contributions.
Anne-Claire Legendre, the New York consul general of France, hosted a cocktail reception at the French consulate in New York as an initiative to help address the massive humanitarian needs of the islands and people in the hurricane stricken regions.
Hundreds joined the French consul general for the event, including the Haitian consul general.
Relief has been slow for the affected islands. Food and water remains in very short supply, families have been displaced and illness is spreading through the affected populations.
Residents on those islands are facing shortages of food, housing, water, electricity and medicines. The lack of water has led people to drink, wash and bathe in rivers and springs.
The French and Haitian governments are fearful that people may become infected with leptospirosis from drinking water from unsafe sources that is contaminated by a bacterium transmitted by the urine of some rodents, which can result in death. Puerto Rico has reported a number of such cases as a result of people drinking water from creeks and streams.