(Eleuthera, Bahamas) – On Wednesday, October 19th, 2016 the Passing Jack Organization, represented by Mr. Addison Cooper, and the Rotary Club of Eleuthera (RCE), represented by President Colin Moss jointly donated a supply of 230 sheets of 5/8 roofing plywood to go towards the rebuilding efforts in North Andros. The materials were presented to the Bahamas Methodist Habitat organization (BMH).
Mr. Cooper commented on the inspiration for the donation, saying, “The Passing Jack organization originally came together to help the elderly and the community, but we decided to deviate from that this time, seeing the urgency of the situation in the country, and donate to hurricane relief through the Methodist Habitat, which will be directing the material to Andros… and hopefully it will go a long way to help with the recovery there.”
RCE President Colin Moss also commented, saying, “We are pleased to be partnering in this effort with the Passing Jack organization of Palmetto Point and the Methodist Habitat, trusted entities who we feel have the heart of the communities where it should be, and they take seriously their commitment to community development. We’re pleased at the Rotary Club to be a part of this effort to lend what aid we can in terms of matching the contributions made by the Passing Jack organization, and to be part of a team which is mobilizing to send bodies on the ground to Andros, and later into Nassau.”
Vice President of the Bahamas Conference of the Methodist Church, as well as Co-Chair of Bahamas Methodist Habitat, Mr. Roderick Pinder, and Director of Bahamas Methodist Habitat, Mr. John Shughart were both on hand to formally receive the donation.
Mr. Pinder, commenting on the actions of BMH in the aftermath of hurricane Matthew, said, “We (BMH) were on the ground in Andros less than a week following the hurricane doing initial assessments, getting to know the local officials – like the Administrator, Social Workers, even Customs officers. Our first two planes flew in from the U.S. during that week with relief aids, like generators, chainsaws, tarps etc… Right now we have to shore up places where we can accept teams. One of the things that gives us a unique position on the ground is that we have a camp down there. The Methodist Church has a place that can house up to 20 individuals at a time. So we are working to make sure that’s in order, so by the time we get the teams in, we have someplace to put them. The situation there is so overwhelming, even if you had materials you can’t fix every roof today. So our job is to, as much as we can at this stage, keep people dry.”
In answer to how the donated materials from Eleuthera would be used, Mr. Pinder stated, “There are a lot of roofs that need roofing plywood, and trust me, once Methodist Habitat has the materials we will source the labour to make sure that the work gets done.”
According to Mr. Pinder, the One Eleuthera Foundation would also be working with BMH, beginning by sending five skilled men to join their team on the ground. He added, “Eleuthera has already responded in such a gracious way, it really is encouraging. In my experience in dealing with Habitat and the aftermath of disaster, this response from the churches in particular is heartening. I thank the people of Eleuthera for really taking this up and supporting it. It has been a good outpouring of support.”
One week after the donation was formally accepted, the BMH/One Eleuthera team was photographed repairing their first roof project in North Andros, using the plywood material donated from Eleuthera. The home belongs to an 85 year old female resident, Aramentha Sumner, said to be wheelchair bound with just one leg, living in Nicholl’s Town, Andros.