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The Ministry of Social Development and Family Services has reached out to render immediate disaster relief to families affected by a mini tornado that ripped off rooftops when it passed through the Chase Village area on Wednesday afternoon.

Among those most affected was a family of six including Beharry Crowe who lives with her husband, three children and nephew.

Crowe reportedly indicated that the entire family was still traumatized by the incident and is now grateful for any assistance provided since most of their furniture, appliances, school and food supplies were all destroyed.

The heavy winds and rains damaged the roofs of three homes and several houses in the area. Following a visit by the Disaster Management Unit of the Couva/Tabaquite/Talparo Regional Corporation, it was disclosed that at least 19 families were affected and some were without shelter.   

Officers attached to the National Social Development Programme (NSDP) and National Family Services Division of the Ministry of Social Development visited the family of six, as well as other affected persons and conducted assessments.

Director of the NSDP, Patricia De Leon Henry, said: “My heart goes out to this family and we are doing everything that we can to help them feel a sense of comfort and encouragement at this time”. 

She added: “One of the children is still distressed from the incident and we will be providing counselling support to the family”.

De Leon Henry stated that the family was assessed and will be recommended for the housing repair grant which amounts to a maximum of $20,000 for people who were affected by a disaster. 

According to the NSDP Director, the family will be eligible for temporary food support and the household assistance grant to aid in the replacement of household items. The Ministry is also prepared to assist with replacing any school items which were lost as a result of the incident.

“While the Ministry is unable to replace all that has been lost at this time, it remains committed to assisting in restoring some level of normalcy to all the affected families,” the release said.

For further information and assistance, citizens may contact the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services’ Hotline at 800-1MSD or any Social Welfare District office.


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