From Hurricane Dorian to COVID-19, many people on the island of Grand Bahama have been devastated both emotionally and financially. Thanks to you, this devastation has been curtailed. With your assistance, we were able to impact over 58 fishermen and women by donating working engines as well as aiding over 10,000 individuals in the recovery effort just days after Hurricane Dorian struck the island. We plan to continue assisting the communities within Grand Bahama. Additionally, we are making plans to restore a portion of the mangrove forest that was damaged by the hurricane. Thank you so much for your continued support of this relief effort. Please reach out should you have any questions or would like to get more involved.
The destruction of Hurricane Dorian
A family receiving relief supplies in Grand Bahama
These past few months have been a difficult time for many. For the fisherfolk on Grand Bahama Island, it has been especially tough. After Hurricane Dorian made landfall last year, many fishermen and women were left with nothing, and many were struggling to feed their families or work. Now COVID-19 has once again devastated the Bahamas by shutting the country to tourism, which is the main source of income for most. Fishermen and women have been severely impacted by the shutdown both professionally and as they attempt to feed their families.
In collaboration with our amazing partners, we were able to assist 58 fishermen and women in Sweetings Cay and Grand Bahama Island by donating eight 30 HP engines as well as distributing fifty $200 vouchers to purchase much-needed tackle supplies at a local marine supply store.
Although we are just scratching the surface with this effort, it has already made a tremendous difference in the lives of those most affected. Thank you to all of those who have supported our hurricane and COVID-19 relief efforts to make this work possible.
Marine Education Initiative, a South Florida based nonprofit organization, in partnership with Lend a Hand Bahamas is delighted to announce a donation of $17,300 combined with a donation of $12,700 from the Yellow Dog Community & Conservation Foundation. This donation will help purchase eight 30 HP engines for fishermen and women of Sweetings Cay and Grand Bahama Island to allow them to fish again for their families and for an income. In addition, 50 fishermen and women affected by Hurricane Dorian will receive $200 each in store credit to purchase much-needed fishing tackle supplies.
The economic devastation to the island resulting from Hurricane Dorian this past fall combined with heavy impacts of COVID-19 has greatly impacted the island. Both of these severe events have taken a large toll on the tourism industry in the Bahamas, and in turn negatively affecting the fishermen and their families on the island of Grand Bahama. Food security continues to be insufficient, thus many families that previously relied on commercial fish sales or guiding tourists in Bahamian waters for an income, are now relying on sustenance fishing to support their families.
Since the devastation of Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas, Marine Education Initiative has been working hard in partnership with Lend a Hand Bahamas, a Bahamian nonprofit organization, to support evacuees and individuals impacted in Grand Bahama and Abaco. We have collaborated with and supported the YMCA in Grand Bahama to help them get their operations up and running to continue to serve the amazing youth in their community. In addition, we have been financially assisting with the support of evacuees in Nassau, Bahamas with toiletries, food items, and other much-needed materials through Lend a Hand Bahamas. To date, we have disbursed thousands of relief items thanks to our generous supporters. Since the hurricane made landfall in September we have been assisting with weekly and some times bi-weekly disbursements of items in Nassau to aid evacuees and have assisting many of our American donors in sending materials over to the Bahamas to offer assistance.
We are working on an exciting new initiative to help support the struggling fishing community who lost many of their livelihoods in Grand Bahama. We will also be working to integrate our marine science/conservation education program into Grand Bahama and Abaco in the coming months to offer the children a fun and educational experience. Stay tuned for some great new programs as we continue to partner to assist our neighbors in the Bahamas and thank you for empowering us to achieve a greater impact.
On September 1st, Hurricane Dorian made landfall, battering the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama for two straight days. With a storm surge of 23+ feet, the equivalent of a 2-story building, and wind gusts of 220mph, Hurricane Dorian left the Bahamas in a state of emergency.
Families like the one pictured above were left with nothing. Our team set out on a mission to hand deliver hurricane relief supplies to the residents on the island of Grand Bahama. With your support as well as numerous companies and organizations lending a hand, we were able to deliver much needed relief supplies to over 2,000 individuals in Grand Bahama. In addition, we have sent additional containers of relief supplies to support evacuees relocated to Nassau, Bahamas. We are continuing to work with our partner Lend a Hand Bahamas to support these evacuee families with needed relief items.
Thanks to our donors, this family - and hundreds of others in need - now have access to necessary supplies in the wake of this disastrous storm. We hope you will consider continuing to support and monitor our efforts!
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