In the wee hours of Friday February 2nd, a family of 12 in San Antonio Village in the Corozal District woke up to the nightmare of their home being engulfed in flames. The family made up of six adults and six children barely made it out alive, and in fact a six year old boy had to be rescued by his mother who had just delivered a baby a week ago and who underwent C-section. She recalls having to go from being bed-ridden with pain, to jumping out a window to save herself and then returning into the fire to rescue her son.

The family has tried to get back on their feet, but while some help has come their way, it has not been enough to put a roof above their heads. Today the family shared that despite turning to a Government Department that deals with welfare, help to restore their home has not been forthcoming.

Screen_Shot_2018-02-07_at_7.52.26_PMElena Williams, Fire destroyed home

“We have seen nothing else for the house, nothing for the house and I need my house back or like plywood like those things would be of great help to help me build up back my house.”

Angelina Gilharry, Sister in law

“Yesterday, I went to the Human Development and one of the ladies that works at the Human Development told me to bring my sister-in-law to the office and she need to have her social Security and her bank statement and they will help her. We went to the office today and the office was closed so tomorrow morning will go back to the office to make them help her with at least with material to make her get her house because she needs her house for her and her grandchildren. I know it’s an ugly site because it’s not like a hurricane it’s her house that got burnt and I will asked anyone who wants to help my sister-in-law because we are not worried about money or clothes but at least a shelter for her and her grandchildren or at least material for her to build her house.”

The devastation caused by the fire has left the family members shaken up. More so for the matriarch, 60 year old mother and grandmother Elena Williams who basically saw 40 years of her life go up in flames. She told us the horrific experience has haunted her like a nightmare.

Elena Williams, Fire destroyed home 

“Every time I go to lay down like I imagine the fire and my seven year grandson, he was left inside in the bed and when my daughter came out and asked where is Chris and I told her I don’t know and she run back inside the room and so when she got in the room the baby was there and all she went to do is to push the baby through the window and she jumped and she just got surgery like six days and like that she saved the little boy.”

The family continues to appeal for assistance with food and clothing items, and more significantly housing material to build back a home.

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