Letecia Roach represented Dominica as the Youth Delegate for Disaster in the 11th Caribbean Conference on Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM) which was hosted in collaboration with the Government of Sint Maarten from December 2nd-6th, 2019 under the theme “The Road to Resilience Checkpoint 2019 – Safeguarding Our Communities, Livelihoods and Economies”. She stated that the information she gained at the conference enhanced her knowledge on how to promote youth empowerment in safeguarding our communities, livelihoods and economies; how to identify lessons from past events and opportunities to inform future resilience. Ms. Roach also stated that she has a better understanding on how to promote the goals and build commitment for Comprehensive Disaster Management and to facilitate exchanges and knowledge sharing on CDM related research, tools, models, products, information and educational materials.
The 22-year-old young ladies are currently pursuing courses in Climate Change and Disaster Management/Preparedness. They were a part of the Caritas Antilles Group which helped build back Dominica after Hurricane Maria and are currently the Healthy Environment-friendly Youth (HEY) Ambassadors for Dominica in the Ashley Lashley Foundation partnered with UNICEF and the Children’s Environmental Rights Initiative (CERI). The HEY Campaign is all about creating a generation of young people committed to adopting lifestyles that are both healthy and environmentally friendly, and leading global advocacy efforts to build inclusive societies where priority is given to life and dignity, not just economic growth. Our agenda is to create a movement bringing all of our youth and children together, in their diversity, to promote and advocate for these shared values.
They both have a passion for Youth Development and helping people be prepared for any disasters in their lives and believe that education is the most powerful weapon which can be used to change the world. While we cannot stop natural disasters, we can arm ourselves with knowledge to reduce loss of lives through adequate disaster preparedness and reduce the effects of climate change. They told the media that their plans are to use this knowledge to facilitate Youth Programs in communities and schools across the island with the support and guidance of the Office of Disaster Management, the Meteorological Office and other Disaster or Climate Change Agencies. They also hope to have their own Youth Foundation one day, but in the meantime they urge all youth to follow their lead and help make Dominica and the world a better living environment.