Rotarians respond in the Bahamas

Report compiled by Diana White, past district governor, and District 7020 Rotarians

The destruction left behind by Hurricane Dorian is devastating. In parts of the Bahamas, literally everything is gone, replaced by piles of rubble where homes once stood. Roads blocked with debris and thousands on thousands left homeless and in need of supplies.

As Rotarians in District 7020, one of two districts that cover the Caribbean and hard-hit Bahamas, we immediately switched into assistance mode. Significant donations of supplies are funneling in from various local efforts and through international disaster relief agencies. Continue reading

How Rotary is assisting recovery in Puerto Rico

By José Lucas Rodríguez, governor of Rotary District 7000 (Puerto Rico)

Puerto Rico is an island in the Caribbean, the smallest of the Greater Antilles, which is distinguished by its natural beauties, the talent of Puerto Ricans in music, arts, and sports, and above all for the warmth of its people.

But the so-called island of Enchantment was transformed by what already has been classified as the most catastrophic event in the history not only of Puerto Rico, but of the United States. More than a month after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, our people are still struggling to recover from the impact of this natural phenomenon, which left so much desolation in its wake. Continue reading

How Rotarians are providing disaster relief

Heart to Heart medical director Rick Randolph treats a child at a mobile clinic in Florida. Photo courtesy District 5710

By Pat O’Donnell, public image chair for Rotary District 5710 (Kansas, USA)

The 45 Rotary clubs in my district have come together to support Heart to Heart International’s disaster relief efforts in Texas and Florida. Immediately after Hurricane Harvey devastated the gulf coast of Texas with over 51 inches of rain, followed by the damage caused in Florida by Hurricane Irma, our Rotary members opened their hearts and checkbooks to help. Continue reading

Recovering from Tropical Storm Irene in Vermont

Rotary members helped a father and son in Vermont return to their home following Tropical Storm Irene. Photo by Jon Gilbert Fox, Rotary Club of Hanover, New Hampshire

Rotary members helped a father and son in Vermont return to their home following Tropical Storm Irene. Photo by Jon Gilbert Fox, Rotary Club of Hanover, New Hampshire

By Marilyn Bedell, Rotary Club of Lebanon-Riverside, New Hampshire, USA, and Jan McElroy, Rotary Club of Henniker, New Hampshire

Rotary members in the New England region of the United States are providing long-term recovery from Tropical Storm Irene, with the help of Rotarians around the globe. Here’s one story of the difference we are making.

Irene, a large and destructive tropical cyclone, affected much of the Caribbean and East Coast of the United States during late August 2011. In Vermont, Irene flooded most of the state’s rivers and streams and in many places stripped away the earth itself, leaving fields of stone and boulders where lush crops and gardens once stood. Hundreds of homes and businesses were destroyed and thousands badly damaged. Continue reading

Truckloads of supplies for hurricane relief

Bonnie F. Sirower

By Bonnie F. Sirower, governor of District 7490 (New Jersey, USA)

On 10 November, with the help of nearly 150 volunteers, about a third of them new to Rotary, we sorted materials delivered by about five large trucks from all over the United States.

Then we packed pick-up trucks to the hilt with food, clothing, cleaning supplies, toiletries, baby stuff, and blankets and set off in many different directions to deliver these goods to more than 12 communities throughout the affected districts hit by Hurricane Sandy nearly two weeks ago. Continue reading

Helping the forgotten people hurt by Hurricane Sandy

People line up at the Nazareth House in lower Manhattan seeking supplies that will get them by for the day. Photo by George R. Camp, past district governor

By Joe Clark, past governor of District 7230 (Bermuda, part of New York, USA)

Hurricane Sandy has left its mark. In lower Manhattan, many elderly, infirmed, homeless and single parent families are suffering. They have no power, food, water, blankets, or warm clothing to get by, and with harsh weather approaching, they don’t have heat or other essentials to keep them going. They are at risk of illness or death from exposure.

Many of these people are invisible to the rest of us, hidden by the brick, steel, and concrete of shelters that hide them from public view. They are fighting to get by one day at a time. They visit the Bowery Mission and the Nazareth House, two charity organizations, on a daily basis to see what they can get to provide for themselves and their families. Continue reading