Readers' letters

Find out what our readers think of the stories making the Gazette headlines.


Dear Ed, — Vital aid continues to be delivered to the survivors of the Haiti earthquake thanks to the generous response of the people of South Lanarkshire.

Money donated to SCIAF (the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund) is providing tents, blankets and tarpaulins for shelter and fortnightly food rations of lentils, oil and high protein bulgar wheat to the most vulnerable among the many thousands of people living in temporary camps.

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In the weeks following the disaster the people of South Lanarkshire gave over 60,700 to support the SCIAF Haiti Earthquake Appeal, including 22,800 from East Kilbride, 13,900 from Hamilton, 7,200 from Blantyre, 7,100 from Uddingston, 3,400 from Bothwell, 2,300 from Carluke, 1,400 from Biggar and 685 from Lanark.

Over 1,144,000 was donated across Scotland to support SCIAF's emergency response including 75,000 from the Scottish Government.

When the 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti on January 12 over 230,000 people were killed and over one million left homeless.

SCIAF's partner on the ground, Caritas Haiti (part of the global network of Catholic aid agencies Caritas Internationalis), was able to quickly distribute food and water from existing stocks in and around the capital Port-au-Prince.

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Three operating theatres were repaired in a major hospital and six mobile clinics provided to care for the injured.

Within the first six weeks the Caritas programme had distributed food to 598,800 people in camps, hygiene kits to 46,900 people, family tents to 2,720, emergency shelter materials to 63,700 people and medical care to over 33,500 was also provided.

Now that the world's media has left Haiti, SCIAF will continue to provide immediate aid and long term support to help the people of Haiti make a full recovery.

I would like to thank the generous people of South Lanarkshire for helping SCIAF to provide practical aid to many thousands of people left injured, homeless and in need following the devastating earthquake which destroyed large parts of Haiti in January.

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We will do everything possible to help Haitians rebuild their lives and move on from this terrible tragedy.

Rebuilding homes, schools and hospitals will enable Haiti to live again.

Tools, livestock and training will also be given to farmers to help them earn a living and boost local food production, a vital aspect for the country's sustainable development.

Cash-for-work programmes are already helping people to recover. By paying people living in the camps to do vital work like building latrines, our cash-for-work projects allow people to get back on their feet, pay for essentials and help improve the living conditions in the camps.

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The generosity of people across Scotland is ensuring that SCIAF is able to work with the people of Haiti so they can make a full recovery and move on from the terrible loss, pain and suffering they have endured. — Yours etc.,


SCIAF's Chief Executive.

* Donate to SCIAF's Haiti Earthquake Appeal online at or call 0141 354 5555.


Dear Ed, — I have just read your report "No incinerator fall out in Royal Burgh" in your July 15 issue and I am both amazed and appalled that our Lanark Community Council can say that this is "nothing to do with us".

The decision to grant approval may be with others but the representation of the views and wellbeing of Lanarkians cannot be cast aside in this manner.

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The proposed plant is less than ten miles away and, for a significant percentage of the year, we in Lanark are directly downwind.

Every member of the community of Lanark has a serious interest in making sure that there are no toxic gases (or even unpleasant smells) emanating from this proposed plant.

If our community council has no interest in the matter, what other options are available to ensure that the interests of Lanarkians are represented?

And if another body has to be formed why do we have a community council? — Yours etc.,


7 Whitehill Crescent,



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Dear Ed, — Thousands of people registered with sight problems in Scotland will find it easier to contact Epilepsy Scotland's helpline thanks to our new Braille calling card.

This means vital helpline information about epilepsy is now accessible to more people in a format they can access themselves.

Our new cards have been ordered by organisations helping many of the 37,000 registered blind and partially sighted people across Scotland.

You can get your own free card by calling 0808 800 2200. — Yours etc.,


Communications Manager

Epilepsy Scotland,

48 Govan Road,


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