Hurricane Dorian Relief Efforts


A boat that was beached from Hurricane Dorian is being combed over by people to recover lost items.

Maddie Garnes, Editor-in-Chief

A boat that was beached from Hurricane Dorian is being combed over by people to recover lost items.


With the wreckage of hurricane Dorian leaving 70,000 people without homes, what relief efforts are being made? Who should be providing aid to the country so desperately in need? Some say the United Nations, while some say the United States. Even China, though its motives are questionable, might become a key player in relief from the worst disaster to hit the Bahamas in recent centuries.


The Bahamas achieved their independence from Britain in 1973 which changed their status to that of a self-governing country that is a part of the Commonwealth. They are a member of the United Nations. This brings about the question of who should provide aid.


Is it the duty of the United States considering many Americans own land in the Bahamas? Or is it the responsibility of the United Nations (UN) because the Bahamas is a member?


Many independent companies such as American Airlines, Rhode Island National Guard, and a Royal Caribbean cruise ship have dropped off food, generators, diapers, and clean water for the victims of hurricane Dorian. President Trump has yet to do anything other than talk about the Bahama’s and the victims.


Monday, September 9, President Trump denied Temporary Protection Services (TPS) which would allow the victims of the hurricane to seek shelter in the US until their country was deemed safe to return to. TPS has been activated in the past for Honduras and Nicaragua after Hurricane Mitch, a category 5 storm, destroyed the two countries in 1999. The US is processing some immigrants fleeing from the Bahamas but only if they already had travel documents. The others are being turned away.


The United States Agency for International Development has committed to giving $2.8 million. The American Red Cross has also done the same. So, while the US is technically lending support, people are disheartened by President Trump’s reaction.


When asked what he thought President Trump should be doing instead of simply talking about the Dorian disaster, Jack Brown, a junior at Oakdale High School, expressed that he thought the President should be, “providing a lot of financial aid for them [because] a lot of it’s underwater right now and they need all the money they can get.”


Journalist Karen Musalo expressed her opinion in a recent article she wrote: “Right now would be a good moment to criticize Trump’s disregard for the plight of those suffering in Dorian’s wake and to express support for a humanitarian response toward our Bahamian neighbors.”


With the lack of US government support, the UN is expected to aid in the reconstruction and safety of the Bahamas. Luckily, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) sent 1.5 tons of lifesaving supplies to Nassau, Bahamas earlier this week.


While the total destruction is estimated to be around $7 billion dollars, as stated by Karen Clark & Co, the aid the US, UN, and other countries are supplying is simply not enough. Money and supplies only go so far when there aren’t any volunteers to distribute them to the victims. Thousands of displaced persons are still struggling to survive and find freshwater and food. The recovery time to restore the island to its former state is unknown. Colin Welker, a Junior, estimated that it would take “four years to fully recover.” If all people become united in trying to do good, they can make a difference in the lives of suffering Bahamians and hopefully lower that time. However, without help, they will not be able to overcome this terrible natural disaster.