Rescued from squalor - House of disabled Portmore resident renovated
Hopie Greensworth, who suffered a stroke 10 years ago, was living in subhuman conditions at her one-bedroom house in Old Braeton, St Catherine, until help came her way recently.
The house of the former sugar worker had deteriorated to the point where the roof had caved in, exposing her and every item she had to the elements. Greensworth, who is disabled, relied on a tarpaulin to cover the section where the bedroom was located.
But last Monday, thanks to the Portmore Clifton Quarry Hill charity group, her political representatives and some good corporate citizens, the 57-year-old Greensworth moved back into a renovated one-bedroom house.
"We were shocked when we saw the condition that Hopie was living in," said Cameka Dixon, who is the leader of the charity group.
"It was in such a terrible state, I say to my partner, who is a part of the entertainment company we managed, that no human being should be living like this; worse of all, she is disabled, we have to do something to help."
Greensworth's plight was then brought to the public's attention as her story moved several persons, among them Mayor of Portmore Leon Thomas.
"The condition was extremely bad, so I contacted Member of Parliament Fitz Jackson and we made the decision that a complete renovation was what was needed to rehabilitate the apartment," Thomas said.
Greensworth was temporarily relocated from the house so the renovation work could take place.
"I was able to secure funding from both the councillor (Anthony Wint of the Braeton division) and the member of parliament to complement what I had earmarked to put into the project from my personal contribution and the municipal corporation," Thomas said.
"In addition, we were also able to secure assistance from some corporate entities, including J. Wray & Nephew, Magnum Promotions, Torpedo Loans and the Kiwanis Club of Portmore so we could complete the renovation in two weeks -- putting on a new roof, replacing the windows, putting in a paved walkway, construct a new fence, installing a new bathroom and new furniture."
Greensworth could hardly contain her excitement when she saw her renovated house for the first time on Monday.
"I can hardly believe my eyes, I have a brand new house and new furniture, I don't know what to say. Thank you mayor, MP and everybody who did this for me, I am so grateful," she said.