Guys, you are all painfully aware of the devastation of British Virgin Islands, and some of the other northern Leeward Islands of the Caribbean. Our news has featured the destruction in Florida and Houston, but the people of BVI wish they could trade places with the people of Florida and Texas. Not only are their homes and businesses crushed and blown away, their livelihoods are largely gone for the foreseeable future. Tourism doesn’t spring back to life when the debris is bulldozed into landfills. Tourists have other places to go; and who wants to go to a wrecked island that has no hotels, no restaurants or bars, no grocery stores with provisions, no reliable services, and virtually nothing green left on the island? The British Virgin Islands are almost completely dependent on tourism and boating, but no islands other than Barbuda were more completely devastated than Tortola, Virgin Gorda, and Jost Van Dyke in BVI. Many of our club members have happy memories of chartering in BVI. The charter fleet there is destroyed, along with the docks at the Moorings/Sunsail, Nanny Cay, and Bitter End Yacht Club.
Diana and I have followed the news of BVI from every possible source. What can we do to help the people in BVI during this catastrophic time? We are members of the Salty Dawg Sailing Association, a non-profit organization that has been sailing from the Chesapeake to BVI every November for several years. Last fall our boat was one of 80 that sailed into North Sound on Virgin Gorda to be hosted by the Bitter End Yacht Club, which exists no longer. The SDSA has strong connections with BVI and is raising money to work through the Rotary Club of BVI and some other civic groups to provide immediate relief for the people most severely affected by Hurricane Irma.
I have forwarded to you the announcement of the Salty Dawg BVI Relief Fund. Could you please post it on our website and send it out to our club members? If you want more information about the Salty Dawg Sailing Association, I will be happy to provide that. I know the leaders personally and I know their hearts. Not a penny will be spent on administrative costs. Contributions are tax deductible and can be made by credit card.
Larry and Diana Caillouet
Click here to view – Salty Dawg BVI Relief