Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 20th 2013 Contents B7
Thursday, June 20, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Indiferencia by Alberto Sautua.
St James must become a model of
Disaster Preparedness from which
other communities across the nation
can pattern themselves.
That was the message sent by pan-
ellists speaking on the topic Disaster
Preparedness for St James at the St James
Amphitheatre, at WeTalk, part of the
just-concluded WeBeat St James Live
Organiser of the event Anton La Fond,
an advocate for the elderly and disabled,
along with fellow panelists Denise
Charles and Alan Gittens, lectured a dis-
appointingly small audience on how to
prepare homes, families, neighbourhoods,
and communities for experiencing natural
or man-made disasters.
"We are in the 2013 hurricane season,
and have to make ourselves ready, as
individuals, by getting our families
together and coming up with a plan we
will implement in the event of a disaster,"
said La Fond. "This should include
knowing exactly where we would go and
how we would get there."
An important aspect of any neigh-
bourhood disaster preparedness plan,
however, must include how we treat
with the elderly and disabled, he stressed.
"One thing you can do is seek out
one elderly or disabled person in your
area who you will help if anything hap-
pens, as they are the most vulnerable
individuals," he said. "As a community
St James needs to adopt a serious
approach to disaster preparedness. We
have to get ready inside our homes by
having a family disaster plan, a pre-
paredness kit, battery operated radio,
and emergency contact numbers at
Families, he added, need to find out
where the nearest shelter is located, how
to administer CPR, who on their street
has special needs, and what can be done
to help them.
Charles, who said she had first-hand
knowledge of the 911 tragedy in the
USA, said from her observation of how
Trinidad and Tobago approaches disaster
preparedness, "if anything happens in
Port-of-Spain, everyone is likely to die
in their cars."
Gittens, a disaster specialist who has
been working for 25 years with the Federal
Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
in the United States, said he had been
to 17 major disasters over the world,
including hurricane Katrina in New
Orleans. He said citizens Trinidad and
Tobago should "prepare for the worst,
but expect the best."
As part of La Fond's awareness cam-
paign, members of the audience were
presented with kits containing a dust
mask, adhesive bandage, sterile pad, and
a pamphlet with helpful hints that would
assist individuals in coping with a dis-
aster. The kits, he said, would be dis-
tributed to schools in order that aware-
ness of disaster preparedness becomes
a priority among the younger generation.
The advocate said he was concerned
with the readiness of emergency shelters
that are earmarked to be located in
schools, churches and community cen-
"Would these shelters have the basic
requirements of water, beds, functioning
toilets, proper lighting, facilities for the
disabled and elderly, medical supplies,
and other necessary equipment?" he
Richard Industries, a St James-based
company specializing in disaster pre-
paredness equipment, mounted a display
of its products, and advanced explana-
tions on how they are to be utilised.
Making a guest appearance at the
event was Tsahai Corbin, first prize win-
ner, and winner of the most original
calypso award in the Port of Spain's City
Corporation's recent "Disaster Prepared-
ness Calypso Competition. The Form
Three St. Joseph Convent's student per-
formed the Sheldon Nugget composition
titled Have A Plan.
Cuban artists Alberto Saut a and
Carlos Guzmán return to Horizons Art
Gallery for a much anticipated joint
Guzmán and Saut made their local
debuts during the highly successful
Cuban Art and Food Festival in 2010,
with Saut a returning for a sell-out solo
show in 2011.
A release from Horizons Art Gallery
said Carlos Guzmán, is highly accom-
plished in his field. Among other dis-
tinctions, he holds the titles Director of
Art Galleries, and Professor of Drawing
and Illustration at elementary, polytech-
nic and university levels. Alberto Saut a,
is also academically distinguished and
has exhibited widely in many countries,
including the US, Germany, Sweden and
Guzmán and Saut a both favour sur-
realism and have complimentary styles
which promise a visually satisfying show.
Although an academic, Guzmán's work
reveals him as a dreamer and story-
teller, a lover of the irrational and the
creator of a world of illusion. His body
of work in this exhibition is entitled El
Bosque de los Milagros, (The Forest of
This forest is full of jeweled tones,
with the fanciful and endearing figures
he is so well known for.
Saut a's contribution is entitled Car-
naval, (Carnival). Splashes of vivid colour
adorn his delicate figures resulting in a
dreamlike, ethereal quality. His fasci-
nation with wings is ever present; from
butterflies and beetles to hummingbirds,
denoting freedom, both creative and lit-
eral, and flights of imagination.
The private viewing for this exhibition
will take place on June 25 from 7 pm to
8.30 pm at Horizons Art Gallery, 37
Mucurapo Road, St. James. The exhi-
bition will continue until July 6 from 9
am to 5.30 pm on Mondays to Fridays
and 9 am to 1 pm on Saturdays.
wings at Horizons
Contigo Iria a La Luna by Carlos Guzman.
St James must become a
disaster preparedness model
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