The Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross has launched a Fishing Livelihood Recovery Programme as part of their Hurricane Irma recovery efforts in Barbuda.
The project was launched with the support of the Fisheries Association and in collaboration with other local partners. According to a release from the Red Cross, the initiative will run under a cash transfer model and is expected to help fisher folk repair their damaged boats and replace their fishing equipment.
The charitable organisation said the initial phase of the program will eventually benefit 70 crew fishermen and 353 family members.
“I was doing pretty well before Irma”, said Collane, one of the beneficiaries. “After Irma, my two boats were completely damage and I could not go fishing for two months. I might get my engines functional now. Fishermen really need to get their livelihood back, we need to feed our families.”
“I have been diving since 1964, I fish grouper, red snapper, barracuda, and some other little fish. I tried to fix the boat by myself but I cannot leave it overnight, it would sink.”, said Norman, another fisherman. “Before I was selling the fish only in Barbuda, now we need to sell in Antigua”
Beneficiaries selection criteria was done under a thorough process in Barbuda. The Red Cross team developed an assessment in site to acknowledge the damage of the fishermen’s boats and complement the information-base provided by the Fishery Association and the Fishery Division of the Ministry of Agriculture.
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