Saturday, January 20, 2018

We want a house, not an apartment

Family of five still searching for home:


'AREA OFFERED TOO GHETTO': Abigail Mondesir at Cocoyea Village, San Fernando last week. —Photo: DAVE PERSAD

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FOR more than three months Abigail Mondesir had been searching for a place where she, her husband and three children could call home after being "evicted" by relatives.

She said she desperately needed assistance to get a home for her family.

Mondesir turned to the media to highlight her problem, hoping that managing director of the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) Jearlean John would intervene and provide her with a place.

Last Friday, the HDC offered Mondesir and her family an apartment at Carlton Lane, off Cipero Street, in San Fernando.

The offer was turned down.

Mondesir said she did not want an apartment, but a house instead.

She told the Sunday Express that she also did not like the location of the apartment.

"That is a real ghetto area. My husband done say he don't want his children growing up in those areas," she said.

Two weeks ago, Mondesir, 27, walked into Express House on Independence Square, Port of Spain and related her story.

She said she, her husband Stephan Baird and their three children — Destiny, 7, Denisha, 5, and Dominic, 3, — were asked to leave the home of relatives at Cocoyea Village in San Fernando where they had been staying for some time.

Since then they had been begging lodging at the home of a friend in south Trinidad but had until New Year's Day to leave.

The day before New Year's, Mondesir returned to the Express saying that she did not receive any favourable responses.

That night John was contacted by the Express via phone and promised to do whatever she could to facilitate the family.

A meeting was set up between Mondesir and officials at the HDC at one of the HDC's branch offices in San Fernando.

That meeting took place Friday afternoon resulting in Mondesir receiving the apartment.

Shortly after however, Mondesir told the Sunday Express that she was not pleased with the offer.

"Is a house we want, we don't want an apartment. My husband is working so he can afford to pay the rent for the house," Mondesir said.

But until they receive that house, Mondesir said she and her family will have to continue begging for a place to stay at the home of friends.