“The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the water spot. Down came the rain and washed the spider out.” Two weeks ago as the water rose within her home, a young mother sang this nursery rhyme to her 4 year old little girl to gently remind her of the powers of the currents now waste high in their one-story home and the need for her daughter hold on. “Don’t get washed away like the little spider” she told her kids.
Fortunately, the water crested just in time and the family survived. Sadly, over the course of 48 hours, roughly 2/3rds of the island was under water and as many as several thousand people may not have been as lucky and are still considered missing.
The storm left complete and utter devastation in its wake. Tens of thousands of homes were lost and damaged in Grand Bahamas and the surrounding smaller islands leaving as many as 70,000 Bahamians homeless. For all the destruction reaped upon the island, the hurricane also unearthed a remarkable resiliency among the Bahamians and unleashed a generosity amongst philanthropists, aid workers and concerned citizens.
Even before the storm hit, NEXUS members Rupert Hayward and Sam Teicher were preparing the response. Rupert, the Executive Director of the Port Authority has been leading the the recovery effort backed by Sam Teicher, the co-founder of Coral Vita and others at his side. Together, with the help of hundreds of other Bahamians and supporters, the Grand Bahamas is beginning their long difficult journey to recovery.
NEXUS is proud to have assisted in that recovery effort. Over the past two weeks, members and friends have procured and donated 19 planes, over 50 boats, 5 Blackhawks and nearly 1 million pounds of relief efforts. Dozens more members have pledged over $2M in aid and donations to The Bahamas.
The effort has been herculean but just scratches the surface on what the short term emergency relief needs for the people and the longer term rebirth of the island. Residents are still desperate for water, in need of food and uncertain about what lies ahead. The NEXUS community can rally to make a difference and support our members on the ground who are ensuring that aid gets to those most in need.
If NEXUS members are interested in sending a plane, taking supplies over in a boat to donate supplies, volunteering, sending critical aid or otherwise getting involved, please fill out this form: https://forms.gle/2YBvV6F2z67TbZSEA
Right now key aid is needed such as water, mold remover, generators, trucks and debris clearing machinery and many other essential items are needed as are long term building materials. To learn how you can help and receive an up-to-date list of what is most needed, please email: Davidd@nexusglobal.org
Lastly, for those who wish to donate funds instead, our members on the ground recommend gifts to Grand Bahamas Emergency Relief Fund. You can do so here: https://www.gbdisasterrelief.org
Pics courtesy of Sam Teicher and Jonathan Beninson