On September 18, Hurricane Maria devastated the Caribbean Island of Dominica, inflicting what the country’s Prime Minister called “mind-boggling damage”. Homes were destroyed, entire industries were brought to their knees and 27 lives were lost.
Months later, it is clear that the recovery will be a long and expensive process. Many governments and organizations are chipping in to help the beautiful island of Dominica reclaim its natural beauty and rebuild the infrastructure that its citizens need.
In order to aid in recovery and relief efforts, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has contributed an additional $3.25 million in humanitarian aid to Dominica. These resources will go toward providing shelter, water, hygiene items, and livelihoods to those effected by the hurricane.
The European Union pledged €750,000 to provide survival kits, food, water, and immediate shelter and household materials to those affected by Hurricane Maria. The funds will also go toward providing training and technical support to those who need to rebuild their homes.
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has been working on the ground in Dominica to help reopen schools. As of November 9, 48 primary and secondary schools had been reopened. UNICEF is also working with other organizations to provide water and sanitation services to some of these schools.
Another organization providing humanitarian aid to Dominica is the United Nations World Food Program (WFP). The WFP made a commitment to provide food assistance to 25,000 citizens of Dominica for three months following Hurricane Maria. They have also been providing critical telecommunications services to those involved in the relief response.
There are many groups that are contributing humanitarian aid to Dominica in the wake of the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria. Progress is being made: schools are reopening, shelters are being built or rebuilt and food and water is being delivered to those who need it most. With sustained investment in the relief effort, Dominica will continue its recovery and become a growing economy and booming tourist destination once again.
– Aaron Childree