Caribbean native using local fundraiser to benefit homeland

A Caribbean native is looking towards her second home in Tupelo to help those displaced in her homeland.

Posted: May 12, 2021 12:41 PM

TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) - A Caribbean native is looking towards her second home in Tupelo to help those displaced in her homeland. 

A volcano eruption on the island of St. Vincent displaced many to Kalil Delacoudray's homeland of St. Kitts and Nevis.

Now, she is partnering with a Tupelo-based organization to share her culture and support those in need. 

Delacoudray shared cellphone video from friends and family of the La Soufrière volcano eruption on the island of St. Vincent. It erupted for the first time in 42 years. 

This area is not far from where Delacoudray is from and she describes it as a beautiful place. 

“The people are warm and friendly," she said. "And especially, with the St. Vincent and the Grenadines community, it’s very similar to our culture in St. Kitts and Nevis.”

Several years ago, Delacoudray met Lauren McIlwain, the founder of Cooking as a First Language.

Delacoudray led a cooking class, teaching attendees how to cook food from the Caribbean. 

Since then, the two women remained friends. Now, they are collaborating on a benefit called "Cooking for the Caribbean."

“Because of the effects of the volcanic eruption, people from St. Vincent and the Grenadines have been displaced," Delacoudray said. "All that loss of a sense of community, you know, it’s profound and I just thought I needed to do something.”

“We are hoping to work with the Mississippi Red Cross," McIlwain said. "We’re talking to them. I’m not exactly how yet.”

Right now, what is supposed to be a sunny day in the Caribbean instead looks like a dreary day because ash fills the air. In a cellphone video shared by Delacoudray, someone describes it as looking like snowfall. 

“Mask wearing is taking on a new meaning," she said. "I’ve seen video where people are literally sweeping ash.”

"Cooking for the Caribbean" will take place Friday, May 14.

Those wishing to attend can purchase a $15 ticket and choose an entree between curried chicken, stewed oxtail and baked salmon. There will be side dishes and additional treats to choose from for an additional fee. 

Tickets can be bought on the Cooking as a First Language website. 

This is a drive-thru event in the parking lot of All Saints Episcopal Church off of Jefferson Street in Tupelo. 

“It’s a win-win situation," McIlwain said. "You get to eat Kalil’s amazing food, and the money that you spend on a ticket is going toward people who need your help right now.”

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 319948

Reported Deaths: 7371
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22285267
Hinds20719421
Harrison18431317
Rankin13901282
Jackson13718248
Madison10263224
Lee10059176
Jones8467167
Forrest7832153
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Washington5425137
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Warren4440121
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Union415777
Neshoba4063179
Lincoln4008112
Hancock386987
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Tate342486
Sunflower339491
Pike3371111
Alcorn327272
Scott320374
Yazoo314171
Adams308086
Itawamba305178
Copiah299966
Coahoma298784
Simpson298589
Tippah291968
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Stone188433
Clay187954
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Clarke178980
Calhoun174132
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Smith164134
Walthall135347
Greene131834
Lawrence131124
Montgomery128643
Noxubee128034
Perry127238
Amite126242
Carroll122330
Webster115032
Jefferson Davis108234
Tunica108127
Claiborne103130
Benton102325
Humphreys97533
Kemper96629
Franklin85023
Quitman82216
Choctaw79118
Wilkinson69632
Jefferson66228
Sharkey50917
Issaquena1696
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 548657

Reported Deaths: 11306
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson810031566
Mobile42105831
Madison35690525
Tuscaloosa26173458
Shelby25607254
Montgomery25081614
Baldwin21868314
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Morgan14629285
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Limestone10179157
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Lauderdale9603250
DeKalb8972190
Talladega8460184
Walker7338280
Autauga7241113
Blount6945139
Jackson6932113
Colbert6413140
Coffee5635127
Dale4928116
Russell454841
Chilton4476116
Franklin431382
Covington4275122
Tallapoosa4138155
Escambia401680
Chambers3728124
Dallas3607158
Clarke353061
Marion3240107
Pike314378
Lawrence3133100
Winston283472
Bibb268564
Geneva257981
Marengo250565
Pickens236962
Barbour234559
Hale227278
Butler224271
Fayette218862
Henry194543
Randolph187544
Cherokee187345
Monroe180041
Washington170539
Macon163051
Clay160059
Crenshaw155957
Cleburne153444
Lamar146837
Lowndes142254
Wilcox126930
Bullock124342
Conecuh113630
Coosa111729
Perry108626
Sumter105732
Greene93634
Choctaw62125
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