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R3 Launches New Housing Repairs Programme

Local News 17 Jul, 2023 Follow News

R3 Launches New Housing Repairs Programme

Grand Cayman, 17 July 2023: As the 2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season begins, the R3 Cayman Foundation is launching a new programme to ensure local families are safe, dry and protected against future storms by repairing damaged homes.

The project builds on the foundation set by a previous partnership between R3 Cayman Foundation, Resilience Cayman and the Cayman Islands Government Ministry of Investment, Innovation and Social Development to repair Caymanian-owned homes previously damaged by storms or otherwise unable to withstand future natural disasters.

The new programme is funded through a CI$500,000 grant from the R3 Cayman Foundation and aims to build community readiness and safeguard lives and property from the impacts of severe weather events.

R3 Chairman Dale Crowley said the impacts of unsafe housing on human health, safety and well-being cannot be underestimated.

“There are people in our community whose lives are upended every time we experience a hard rain, much less a storm. This programme continues R3’s previous efforts to ensure the vulnerable members of our community – especially the elderly, disabled and families with young children – can shelter safely in their homes,” he said. “Damp, unsafe homes are a threat to human health and safety in so many ways, whether from physical health concerns like mould, or the emotional toll of not having a fit-for-purpose home. Access to safe, dry housing is fundamental to ensuring people can live their best lives.”

The foundation will once again partner with Resilience Cayman to deliver the home repairs through one-time grants for qualified households. All homes targeted for repairs under the programme have been previously identified by the Cayman Islands Government and vetted by the Resilience Cayman team. Qualifying homes are then screened using a rating system to prioritise homeowners who are elderly, disabled, or otherwise vulnerable, and those with young children in the household. The programme includes due diligence to ensure the residents are homeowners who will continue to reside at the premises once the repairs are complete.

Resilience Cayman Chairperson Jan Gupta said: “Resilience Cayman has partnered with R3 Foundation since February 2022.  Since then we are proud to have made a significant impact in addressing the huge volume of applications for housing repairs from the community. There is always more to be done and limited resources need to be used as efficiently as possible to ensure we can reach as many homes as possible. With 18 months of experience in repairing homes for this programme, we now have a strong process for assessing families in need, hiring contractors, purchasing materials, and completing the homes on time and within budget. We are grateful to have strong relationships with local contractors and vendors and we appeal for more companies to step forward and assist with this worthy programme.”

Relief Committee Chair Woody Foster explained the grant amount is expected to enable the foundation to repair 15 to 20 homes but could have an even greater impact with the support from the wider community and in-kind donations of materials and labour from local construction companies and contractors.

“Between the rising cost of materials and labour, these funds get used up in the blink of an eye. We wish we could do more but we have to focus on making the homes safe and dry – that is our key priority. Putting on a whole new roof or installing new windows and doors can be an expensive venture,” he said.

“We welcome any offer of support from local contractors, plumbers, electricians and building supply companies to donate your time, materials or expertise to help people in need.”

Individuals and organisations interested in supporting the housing repairs programme are encouraged to contact info@r3foundation.ky  or info@resilience.ky  for more information on how to get involved.

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