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'She's hungry, cold and stranded' - Grandmother asks Gov't to bring 15-y-o grand child to Jamaica

Published:Thursday | January 28, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Gareth Davis Sr, Gleaner Writer

THE GRANDMOTHER of a teenaged girl, who is stranded near the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince, is appealing for help to get her granddaughter to Jamaica.

Fifteen-year-old Paula Sabrina Brown, a Haitian national of Jamaican parentage, has reportedly been living on the streets of that earthquake-hit capital since disaster struck more than two weeks ago.

The child's grandmother, Doris Lightbody, who is a returning resident from the United States (US), told The Gleaner Tuesday night that her grandchild made contact with her father, who is also living in the US, as recently as yesterday.

She pointed out that her granddaughter told her father by cellphone that she was badly in need of food, clothing, drinking water, somewhere to sleep and that she was cold.

"I am asking the Government to see what can be done in helping my grandchild to get to Jamaica," she said.

"My family is willing to care for her at no one's expense. She is stranded with nothing to eat, and no aid has reached her section of the island yet. I have already discussed the matter of her wanting to come to Jamaica with her father."

Priority for gov't

She noted that her granddaughter was only able to grab her cellphone before running from her house during the earthquake.

Information Minister Daryl Vaz, who visited Port Antonio on Tuesday, said all attempts would be made to locate the stranded child.

"The matter at hand will be treated as a priority," said Vaz.

"The process will be expedited, so as to ensure that the teenager is delivered safe to family members in Portland, and in quick time. Once it can be proven that shehas Jamaican roots and connections, she will be united with them."

Approximately 150,000 persons, and counting, have perished since the massive magnitude 7.0 earthquake shook Port-au-Prince, two weeks ago.