Three months after Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas, families are continuing along the road to recovery with help from the American Red Cross and the international Red Cross and Red Crescent network. The category 5 storm was the strongest to ever hit the island nation, causing many people to uproot their lives and evacuate. The hurricane relentlessly pounded the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama Island for the better part of two days with sustained winds of up to 185 mph and a devastating storm surge.
Now, as many start to return to their affected neighborhoods on the islands, meeting their needs where they are at is our top priority. There has been an outpouring of support from donors, which has allowed Red Cross teams to continue distributing critical aid including kitchen sets, clean-up kits, hygiene supplies, food and water. The Red Cross is also providing financial assistance directly to those most impacted by the hurricane. This enables hurricane survivors to prioritize their needs, brings them dignity, and restores some sense of normalcy to their lives. Some are using the funds for temporary housing, transportation, hot meals, medicine and utilities. Others are using the funds to help their children. “This is for my kids, they went back to school yesterday and now I can afford to get them their uniforms, workbooks and new clothes. All I can say is thank you," says Sheikadena Sawyer, a mother of three.
Red Cross disaster specialists have been on the ground helping with shelter, water and sanitation, IT/telecommunications, health, logistics, livelihoods, cash-as-aid, communications supporting the Bahamas Red Cross from the beginning. Helping families in their recovery journey will be a team effort. At the Red Cross, we are here to meet immediate needs and help people as they start this long road to recovery. To find out more, please visit redcross.org/dorian.