Hurricane Dorian Relief Efforts in the Bahamas

Good morning, all. Just logged on for the day and am seeing some video out of Abaco. At Green Turtle Cay’s Settlement Creek, the water has crested the seawall. The area south of the Wrecking Tree restaurant is already flooded. And the worst of the hurricane hasn’t even arrived yet.

(Photo: John Sawyer)

For those of us not in the path of the storm, it’s a sickening, helpless feeling. But there is something we can do right now to help. We can donate to HeadKnowles.  

HeadKnowles is a private organization formed in 2015 by Bahamians Lia Head-Rigby and Gina Knowles to provide hurricane relief to the residents of the south and central Bahamas after that area was devastated by Hurricane Joaquin.

Lia Head-Rigby and Gina Knowles, founders of HeadKnowles (Photo: Lia Head-Rigby)

Harnessing the power of social media, these ladies mobilized ordinary Bahamians and corporate contributors, collecting and delivering truckload after truckload of food, water, clothing, tarps, generators and other necessities to the residents of Long Island, Rum Cay, San Salvador, Acklins Island and Crooked Island.  

When Hurricane Matthew brutalized Andros, Nassau and Grand Bahama in 2016, HeadKnowles once again sprung into action, delivering desperately needed relief to those affected. And in 2017, when Hurricane Irma targeted the southwest Bahamas, HeadKnowles was there.

Over the past 4 years, HeadKnowles has raised more than $4 million for Bahamian hurricane relief efforts. The organization has been so successful that in 2017, Lia and Gina were recognized by the Bahamian Project, a permanent collection of portraits of Bahamians who have made significant contributions to the country.

I’ve been in constant touch with Lia since yesterday, and she advises that HeadKnowles is preparing to mobilize to help Bahamians affected by Hurricane Dorian. But they can only do this with our help.

Here’s how we can support their efforts:

  • Donations can be made to HeadKnowles’ RBC bank account # 2883452 – Palmdale Branch, 05745. (Please email a screenshot or scan of your deposit receipt to HeadKnowles@gmail.com when you’re done.)

For Hurricane Dorian relief, Lia says HK’s primary focus will be on supplying tarps and generators, evacuating people with medical or other urgent needs, and helping schools to return to normal as soon as possible. (Hurricanes can be traumatic for youngsters, and Lia says HeadKnowles tries to calm children by keeping them distracted and focused while their parents and families are cleaning up and rebuilding. “We even did school under trees with picnic tables after two of the storms,” Lia says. “Just to keep the kids occupied.”)

But of course, depending on the outcome of the storm, that focus could shift, and having cash donations allows HeadKnowles the flexibility to adapt to changing needs.

Another reason that cash donations are preferable is that HeadKnowles is able to obtain bulk discounts from suppliers, meaning their dollars go further than yours or mine might.

That being said, donations of tarps, generators and other emergency supplies would all be gratefully accepted. To contribute these items, to make a corporate donation or to donate a plane/vessel to help transport relief supplies and evacuate storm victims, please CONTACT ME and I’ll put you in touch with Lia.

In terms of food and clothing donations, these should be made through the Bahamas Red Cross. HeadKnowles will help with distributing these items where they’re most needed.

So while we wait for the storm to pass, please share this information with as many people as possible and contribute as much as you can, so that HeadKnowles will be ready to help those affected as soon as the storm has passed.

For updates on HeadKnowles, join their Facebook group page.

Thanks to our Bahamian countrymen and women, and all our foreign friends, for supporting Bahamian hurricane victims through HeadKnowles.

And thank you Lia and Gina for all you’ve done for Bahamians in need.   

Read more about HeadKnowles:

  5 comments for “Hurricane Dorian Relief Efforts in the Bahamas

  1. Bill
    September 1, 2019 at 9:25 am

    Just donated to HeadKnowles. Thanks for the heads up! I have a boat on GTC hauled out at the yard, so any info you get about any boats that survived the storm would be helpful.

    Like

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