In March 2020, the Barbuda Resilience Fund held at the International Community Foundation sent $5,000 grants to BarbudanGO, Be Foundation, and the Youth Media Apprenticeship Program to help Barbudans prepare for COVID19.
BarbudanGo and Be Foundation are two local nonprofits that emerged after Hurricane Irma in 2017.
The mission of the BarbudanGO is to:
- Operate as an umbrella organization to give individuals andl groups access to apply for grants.
- Provide alternative education programs.
- Strengthen and preserve Barbuda’s history and culture.
- Make Barbuda more prepared for disasters.
The 5k grant supported the BarbudanGo team in working directly with the Barbudan Council to increase public health and safety awareness on the island. Funding helped purchase supplies for the local hospital and also supported a public awareness campaign where youth and adults participated in a pandemic song writing contest.
BarbudanGo also serves as the fiscal sponsor for the Youth Media Apprenticeship Program who run the only local news station in Barbuda and who have been a critical local source for information and resources. The 5k grant was used to help the Youth Media team broadcast daily COVID 19 updates, trainings and other interviews that all helped to connect local community efforts in fighting the pandemic.
The mission of the Be Foundation is to:
- Empower the voices of Barbudans to advocate for social change.
- Identify global opportunities for community involvement.
- Engage organizations, community leaders, citizens to ensure authentic participation and shared decision-making.
- Fundraising and resource mobilization.
With the 5k grant, the Be Foundation team was able to continue advancing their local farming program. Most of the food on the island is imported, which leaves Barbudans particularly vulnerable during this critical time. This program is geared towards building the resiliency of Barbudans to grow their own food. During the International Community Foundation's visit in late February there were 10 new local farmers.
As we are writing this update Barbuda continues to prepare for hurricane season. Tropical storm warnings called for a lockdown on August 21st. At the same time, Barbudans are pushing back against the destruction of Palmetto Point which is part of the Codrington National Lagoon Reserve and an internationally recognized Ramsar site.
The International Community Foundation team is grateful to everyone who has supported the Barbudan Resilience Fund. Incoming donations will continue to support capacity building for these NGO's who are passionate and commited to Barbuda and it's people.