Help us make this Holiday Season special for children and families of the Caribbean!
Bring new unwrapped toys to The Hangar Restaurant at Albert Whitted Airport, Atlas Aviation at Peter O’ Knight Airport, The Hideaway Cafe on Central Avenue, Salty’s Gulfport (5413 Shore Blvd S, Gulfport, FL 33707), Old Key West Bar & Grill (2451 Central Ave, St. Petersburg, FL 33713) between now and December 11th. It’s our goal to fill an entire 20′ container with toys for the Boys & Girls Club of USVI!!
VOLUNTEERS ARE NEEDED! If you’d like to lend a hand on December 11th, volunteers with trucks or vans are needed to pick up toys at one of the five locations and deliver them to our freight forwarder in Tampa. Plan on 2-3 hours of the day. Please fill out the Contact Us form below to sign up. Thank you!
SPECIAL THANKS to Bohlke International Airways for offering to fly the donated toys to U.S.V.I.
Our initial efforts were focused on satisfying the immediate needs of the islands.
Much of USVI and Puerto Rico continue to struggle without electricity and clean drinking water. Fortunately, commercial airlines are now providing service to the major airports in the islands so people are able to get to the mainland at reasonable rates. Additionally, large shipments of supplies are being delivered and dispersed to those in need within somewhat reasonable timeframes.
Our mission has shifted from focusing mainly on disaster relief efforts to looking at how we can support the islands in rebuilding their communities. It’s estimated that over 15,000 homes have tarps to keep out the elements because of damage to their roofs, the majority of islanders will go at least 3-6 months without power and jobs are scarce. Many schools are still condemned and the hospitals are sub par.
We are currently focused on supporting the following:
- Water Purification Systems– many islanders do not have access to clean drinking water. We are researching and developing water purification solutions for individual homes and larger systems for the community.
- Coordination with FEMA and U.S. Military– FEMA and the U.S. Military have a large presence on the islands. Our team has created relationships with key members in both agencies to coordinate relief efforts by using their massive resources and our ability to get on the ground speaking to individual families and accessing the ongoing need.
- Support of Roof Replacements – the majority of the homes that lost all or part of their roofs now have tarps. We are investigating roofing solutions that are affordable but permanent for those families and educating families on their options between FEMA and other non profits that specialize in rebuilding.
- Solar Power – the majority of the islanders depend on power for their homes to be supplied with fresh water. In the USVI their water is filtered via electrical pumps. We are researching how solar power can be used in an affordable manner to get fresh water to more people in a timely manner and serve as permanent solution for the ongoing power outages.
- Medical Supply Deliveries – many medical centers are still in need of medical supplies. We have accumulated many donated medical supplies and are working to fund flights to deliver these supplies to the areas in need.
- Animal Rescue – many islanders had to leave home without their pets due to airline and mercy cruise restrictions. We are working to fund flights that return these animals to their owners.