The cries for help from an elderly couple living in deplorable conditions have been answered, and Wilson and Louise Yearwood can expect to be in a pristine, new home by Friday March 17, thanks to the charitable efforts of the concerned locals and students and staff of the Codrington International School.
In an article published on March 2, Barbados TODAY exposed the squalid state in which the the 66-year-old Wilson and his 75-year-old wife Louise were living in Clifton Hall, St John.
Their one bedroom, wooden house barely stood at the edge of the Clifton Hall slope, overlooking the breath-taking crystal blue waters of Martins Bay, St John; the roof of the Government-owned structure was littered with gaping holes and was in desperate need of repair, with rusting galvanize and terrible leaks; and in the kitchen, Wilson has constructed a makeshift tap on top of a self-made wooden countertop, and next to it was a rusting unusable stove.
The dirty floors had also revealed evidence of rodents, and buckets had been placed throughout the home in a desperate attempt to catch water leaking through the roof that was supposed to help keep the family dry.
Barely able to afford their necessities on his medically unfit cheques and his wife’s pension, the 66-year-old had pleaded for assistance, and the couple’s plight did not go unnoticed as Principal of Codrington International School Darryl Brown paid them a visit and promptly set the wheels in motion to rebuild the crumbling house.
When Barbados TODAY paid a second visit to the retired couple today, they were all smiles with high expectations as labourers were painting their new roof and rebuilding their living room.
The grime, dirt and moss algae which had blackened their bathroom walls was now gone following an industrially cleaning.
Overseeing the reconstruction, foreman Randal Medford indicated that the roof had been replaced, and so had the sides of the wooden structure, while the entire bathroom was rebuilt.
Recounting his initial reaction when he first saw the Yearwood residence, Medford said, “It was in a deplorable state, it would have scrawled your skin to touch it”.
From March 6, Medford and his team commenced construction of the dilapidated house, beginning by throwing away the debris and aging items into a skip. At present, there is a lot left to be done as, as the pensioners will need new furniture and household items when the renovations have been completed.
Speaking from his daughter’s residence, where he is staying while the repairs are ongoing, Wilson said he was overwhelmed at the charitable contributions made by concerned citizens.
“I feel more than a million dollars to know that when I move in there I know I can’t get wet, I will know that everything will be safe and good; even getting new doors, because it will lock – the door before it didn’t lock – and so I am glad and thankful,” he told Barbados TODAY.
“I want to thank all the people who helped, who assisted and who is about to assist. I want to thank them very much,” he stressed.