It’s Still Hurricane Season

hurricane, caribbean, damage
And it's not too late to help our friends in the Caribbean.

In today’s fast-paced media world, it’s easy to jump from one news story to the next and forget what happened the previous day. Here’s a reminder: it is still hurricane season, and it will be until November 30.

Our friends in the Caribbean have faced remarkable challenges very early during this 2017 hurricane season. Lives were lost. Homes and livelihoods were destroyed. As the rest of the world moves on with their day-to-day lives, inhabitants of these miraculous islands that sailors love so much are struggling to rebuild. 

The rebuilding will take years and billions of dollars. But here’s how you can help:

1. Go to the Caribbean

The Caribbean is one of the most tourism-dependent regions in the world. With tens of millions of visitors every year, tourism intensely impacts the GDP of each and every country in the Caribbean. The number one way you can help these islands is to return. Don’t cancel your vacation plans!

2. Volunteer

Are you attending a regatta in the Caribbean this upcoming season? Take extra supplies down on your boat or shipping container. Supplies that are needed most in the aftermath of a hurricane are: clean drinking water, clothing, and shelf-stable food. Go down early or stay a day late to help with cleanup efforts in the local community.

3. Donate

Relief groups are starting to make headway with rebuilding in the Caribbean but these efforts come with a cost. Here are some suggestions if you’re not sure where to start:

Caribbean Sailing Association: Our friends at the CSA have regular updates on relief efforts underway in the Caribbean. They’re also a fantastic resource to make sure your favorite regatta is still running this season! (Hint: most are!)

YachtAid Global: Find out how you, as a sailor, crew member, or yacht owner can provide assistance to the Caribbean during this time of crisis.

Hispanic Federation: UNIDOS: The Hispanic Federation has formed UNIDOS disaster relief fund to support Puerto Rico.

Virgin Gorda Relief Supply Fund: Run by Dive BVI, donations raised from this fund will help rebuild Virgin Gorda.

Barbuda Recovery & Conservation Trust Fund: An emergency relief fund to help rebuild the island of Barbuda after Hurricane Irma - all donations will go directly to support of Barbuda and its people.

CARE (Caribbean Assistance and Relief Effort) Fund: The St. Croix Foundation will use contributions and funds to support both immediate and strategic needs throughout the USVI.

Tourism Cares: Destination Disaster Recovery: The Destination Disaster Recovery Fund works in conjunction with partnerships established with the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association, adding national support for regional efforts.

Caribbean Tourism Association (CTO) Relief Fund: Collects donations through the CTO Relief Fund for relief efforts in member countries affected by hurricanes and to assist other Caribbean countries affected by natural disasters.

Sailors Helping: Sailors Helping is made up of an all volunteer team of people dedicated to helping support the island communities for which we all care so deeply.

(Note: This is by no means a comprehensive list of organizations trying to help in the Caribbean, and we welcome suggestions to add. Always do your own research before giving to any group and remember that organizations with strong ties to the local community can be a great outlet. You can always research groups at charitywatch.org)