Ten years after Hurricane Ivan passed through the West Indies, the principle Anglican Church in Grenada remains closed and in need of a further substantial funds to reopen.
Ten years after Hurricane Ivan passed through the West Indies, the principle Anglican Church in Grenada remains closed and in need of a further substantial funds to reopen. On 7 Sept, 2004, Hurricane Ivan, a category 3 storm, struck the Caribbean island of Grenada, causing widespread destruction. The financial cost of the disaster was estimated at more than US$900 million, more than twice the country’s GDP. The hurricane damaged more than 80 per cent of the country’s buildings with only two of the 75 public schools undamaged. Severe disruption of the health sector also occurred, including the almost complete destruction of Princess Alice, the island’s second largest hospital. An estimated 80 percent of the power distribution grid was lost, and nearly 70 percent of the tourism infrastructure was rendered uninhabitable. Hurricane Ivan also badly damaged the agricultural sector, with widespread damage to nutmeg crops, the island’s principal agricultural export. World Bank loans and foreign aid grants from the UK and US have helped restore the island’s public infrastructure, but repairs to the islands church have had to be funded by its members. Since the storm, the congregation of St George’s Church has met in the neighboring St George’s Anglican Senior School, while the nearby Roman Catholic cathedral has offered its premises for special services. This week the parish council reported that $440,000 had been raised locally to rebuild the colonial era landmark church, but a further $2.1 million was needed to make complete renovations. Work on restoring St George’s began in April 2014 and is expected to be completed by the end of 2016. However an appeal has gone out across the Caribbean asking for support to reopen the island’s principal church.