Disaster Reconstruction Authority thanks NGO community at Florida event

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Katherine Forbes-Smith, Managing Director, Bahamas Disaster Reconstruction Authority, addresses members of the local and international NGO community and media at a press conference at Food for the Poor, Coconut Creek, Florida on Friday, March 6, 2020. (Disaster Reconstruction Authority)

Members of the local and international NGO community were thanked for their significant assistance to The Bahamas as a result of the devastation caused by Hurricane Dorian at a press conference in Florida marking the six-month period since the Category 5 storm hit Abaco and Grand Bahama. “I want to thank the many international and Bahamian NGOs for stepping forward and helping during our time of crisis,” said Katherine Forbes-Smith, Managing Director of the Bahamas Disaster Reconstruction Authority, on Friday, March 6 at Food for the Poor, Coconut Creek, Florida. “You helped save lives. You lessened suffering.” Hurricane Dorian hit Abaco and Grand Bahama in September. With maximum sustained winds of 185 miles per hour, it was the strongest storm to hit The Bahamas.

It is estimated Dorian caused $3.4 billion in losses and damage. Representatives of local and international NGOs were present at the event. Marking the six-month period, Food For The Poor President/CEO Ed Raine said the charity is committed to The Bahamas’ long-term recovery. Some of the most recent supplies being purchased and shipped to The Bahamas by Food for the Poor include 750 solar-powered street lamps and 30 truck chassis, including 26 to the Disaster Reconstruction Authority to help move containers off the port, and four to HeadKnowles Foundation to transport goods.

After the recovery is complete, the Authority will donate the chassis to other churches and NGOs in The Bahamas. “We know that the goods we’ve sent have meant the world to those suffering, but the longer-term needs are great. Mass numbers of people have been displaced,” said Raine. “It’s going to take some time for The Bahamas to recover, but Food For The Poor is committed to being there every step of the way with the support of our dedicated donors.” Mission Resolve Foundation, with help from numerous NGOs, continues to provide aid and assist with numerous major relief and rebuilding efforts.

Most recently, American Red Cross awarded Mercy Corps and Mission Resolve Foundation a grant to not only continue providing clean drinking water to Grand Bahama, which it has from the onset of the hurricane, but now to double production through May 2020. Together Mercy Corps and Mission Resolve are providing 16,000 gallons of fresh water per day to the community. “We are so thrilled about the ongoing support which continues from so many amazing collaborating partner organisations for the Bahamian relief efforts,” said Mission Resolve Foundation Co-Founder Joseph Farrell Jr.

“It is truly incredible what can be accomplished when so many selfless and compassionate people get together to support one another to aid our Bahamian neighbours”. Mrs. Forbes-Smith said she hopes the fruitful relationship with the NGO community continues to grow over the reconstruction and restoration period. “Your efforts have helped a great deal,” she said. “Restoration and recovery from Dorian will take years. Through the Authority I lead, I know we can deepen our partnerships to make the lives of the people affected by Dorian better.” Food For The Poor,one of the largest international relief & development organisations in the U.S., does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor primarily in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America.

This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicine, educational materials, homes, support for orphaned or abandoned children, care for the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance. Mission Resolve Foundation serves as a global catalyst to engage, educate and inspire the public in best practices for humanitarian aid, civic engagement and the deployment of applied environmental science. The organisation utilises its extensive network and expertise to assist with the coordination of Government relief and recovery efforts among public, private and non-governmental organisations after devastating natural disasters, helping to get desperately needed supplies and aid to those affected.

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