While stating that government has created a database of vulnerable residents, the Ministry of Health and Social Development said it is not only providing financial assistance but is also sourcing jobs for these residents.
Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Petrona Davies said a database was developed after making visits to a few thousand homes across the territory.
She said home visits were done immediately after Hurricane Irma in collaboration with the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency, otherwise called CDEMA.
“We touched 3,000 households. There was a rapid needs assessment and we spoke to the people that we could find, and if we didn’t find them, we went back to understand what was happening. We were able to identify those with urgent needs and target the assessment to them immediately and enter them into a database,” Davies said.
While speaking at a public consultation on government’s proposed recovery plan for the British Virgin Islands, the permanent secretary said a social analysis was done after creating the database.
“This is a whole electronic framework that we now have and we are able to use it with other programmes to identify those most vulnerable households — what their needs what are, their skills, how we can match persons with job opportunities, etcetera.”
“It is not just about increasing public assistance but improving persons’ chances to participate in the economy and provide for their families,” Davies said.
Since the hurricanes, the government rolled out a household assistance programme to assist vulnerable residents.
As part of the programme, residents received monetary handouts. More than 800 households received financial top-ups so far, the BVI Red Cross had reported.