In 2017 the US Virgin Islands were devastated by a savage one, two punch, as hurricanes Irma (as a Cat. 5) and Maria (as a Cat. 4) roared ashore over the space of nine days.
On Thursday I started as hurricane disaster response volunteer in the US Virgin Islands. The middle school we are using as our base was so devastated by Irma and Maria the students had to move to the high school, where they have to attend classes in shifts.
Trump has sat on billions of dollars meant for extreme storm mitigation in PR, USVI, LA, TX, and FL.
I’ll be here working for three weeks.
On Friday my crew was working to make a devastated house habitable again. The homeowner was present while we worked. He is 90 years old and blind. He had spent decades working in the building trades here on St Thomas.
My team is led by a 20s something woman named Emily.
I‘ll be working here in the USVI until the end of January. Sleeping on a Red Cross cot in a former middle school classroom with 16 other volunteers (after 2 nights I decided the cot was so bad I prefer the floor). Our rooms get generator power after dark. The school’s parking lot is still being used as a base for utility crews, and is a hub of activity 24 hours a day.
Please donate if you can help us at the All Hands and Hearts US Virgin Island hurricane response project.