Hurricane Maria was one of the worst Atlantic hurricanes on record. On the island of St. Croix, wind and rainfall caused severe damage to homes, communication networks, and the power grid. Due to the highly active hurricane season, resources for recovery were stretched thin in the Caribbean. Despite these challenges, the resiliency of Crucians never wavered. Neighbors came together to help each other and renew their island, inspiring the Island Spirit Fund to amplify and sustain those efforts.
A hybrid model of direct aid and community investment is needed to support disaster recovery. Contributions to the Island Spirit Fund are granted to local organizations who are listening to what Crucians truly need and who can provide the nourishment, supplies, equipment, and other resources required for short-term recovery and long-term stability. The Island Spirit Fund will apply these same principles when granting funds to other U.S. communities.
By granting funds in direct response to local communities' physical and emotional needs, the Island Spirit Fund aims to alleviate the isolation and hyper-individualization that leaves people frustrated, vulnerable, and helpless in the face of storms. Bringing people together is the first step to ensuring that no one weathers a storm alone. Further, the Island Spirit Fund addresses the need for the paradigm of disaster relief to change, fostering resiliency and empathy to face what's to come.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).