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Post Hurricane Maria – Dominica – how to help

September 21, 2017

Dominica is one of our favourite Caribbean Island nations. Historically Dominica was invaded and controlled by France and England. In 1978 Dominica gained independence from Britain and since then has charted its own course. It’s often referred to as the ‘island of nature’ with volcanic craters, a lake called ‘Boiling Lake’, a large rainforest and lush flora and fauna. The national GDP is approximately $520 million with an estimated population of 75,000.

Most other Caribbean island nations maintain close ties to their colonizers; Martinique/Guadeloupe/St. Marteen are departments of France with full financial supports nd robust economies. US Virgin Islands (USVI) and the British Virgin Islands (BVI) have connections to the United States and Britain respectively and have high powered wealthy residents like Richard Branson to advocate and rebuild.

Dominica is alone. With few cruise ships, only one large resort now under construction, a rural economy and a few yachties visiting it has few resources to recover. When we toured the island earlier in the year they were still using ‘temporary’ bridges that were constructed after the extensive damage caused from flooding in tropical storm Erica in 2015.

How can one help a country that doesn’t have a resident celebrity to advocate for them nor a robust tourist sector rebuild from a Force 5 hurricane? According to early reports Rouseau, the capital, has been devastated with over 85% of homes blown down or roofs missing and major institutions crippled. Little has been heard from the back country as I am sure bridges have once again disappeared and communication towers and power lines destroyed. We do know in the north, Portsmouth, that the hospital’s roof got blown off.

Here in St George’s, Grenada, boats are headed north with supplies. There are tugs, barges, motor and sailboats headed up with emergency materials today and over the next couple of weeks for which we have helped buy goods. But it’s the longer term where help is needed and where perhaps you as readers of the blog can find somewhere to donate/help Dominica directly.

We don’t want Dominca’s plight to be lost in the onslaught of calls for help from the more ‘star-studded’playgrounds of the Caribbean. Their plight is real but Dominca will get lost and forgotten in the mix.

Hurricane Maria

Media – recent media coverage on Dominica and Hurricane Maria

October 19th NYCEastern Caribbean Relief Fund

NY Times update on how to help

Update Sept 28th

BBC report

The Guardian’s recent story on Hurricane Maria

Washington Post

Sept 22nd CNN

Possible places to give help – we will update this section as time goes on

Help a Dominican rebuild

Dominica disaster relief facebook

Crowdfunding organization

while this was written for assistance to Irma’s victims this may be a good resource for Dominica in the coming weeks

Looking for someone or reporting on someone

2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 21, 2017 18:06

    Tony;
    You’re right! With the recent second Mexican Earthquake there has been little mention of Dominica. I just watched a CNN Aerial report and it is horrible. I’ll spread the word in my blog.
    Hang in there.
    Fred

  2. Sue Donaldson permalink
    September 23, 2017 13:57

    in the NYT for a graphic look at Dominica:

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