COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Tropical Storm Erika nearly destroyed the island country of Dominica two weeks ago. Now, two natives of the commonwealth now residing in Columbus plan to give their country some relief.
The island nation suffered significant flooding and destruction as Tropical Storm Erika passed through on Aug. 27.
Sisters Caryl Martin and Lynne Jack immediately started working with an organization in Atlanta to send supplies back to Dominica after the natural disaster.
"This just devastated the entire country. Some villages were totally washed out by water, and my village especially, we lost one life that was washed out into the sea," Martin said.
The sisters have a number of supplies collected from various agencies, churches and friends in one week. They say the basics - food and water - are just some of the most needed items for survivors of the storm.
"Every little bit counts. From a tin of oil to a pamper to a baby juice," Martin said.
Military troops from a handful of countries are also helping.
"We have the U.S. troops that are in Dominica and British troops on the ground helping to restore water, clean-up, restore compounds and help fix up the roads," Martin said.
Martin says their parents in Dominica were also affected by Erika.
"They lost everything in their home, but the structure of the house is still standing. So I thank God for [their] life. But [for] others, whole structure is gone, so they have nothing," Martin said. "We have villages that are covered in landslides and there are bodies that are yet to be discovered."
The storm killed 31 people and even more are missing.
"Emotional assistance and counselors [are also needed] because of the amount of lives lost," Jack said.
The sisters say anyone can help provide basic food and water to help the country during this critical time. To help donate items, click this link to see the particular needed items at this time.
To access a direct link to the GoFundMe account for financial donations and contributions towards the Dominica Relief, you can click here. People in Columbus and the surrounding areas can also contact Martin at (706)-221-2701 or (706)-615-8890 to learn more about the relief effort and donate items.