Photo: Hurricane Dorian from space

Strengthening Efforts to Bring Connectivity to a Rebuilding Region

Posted on September 26, 2019 by The Patterson Foundation
Amid the devastation in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian are inspiring stories of communities coming together to help their neighbors as well as incredible accounts of survival and resilience.

While Dorian has long since faded, continued support for relief and recovery will be crucial toward strengthening this resilience and the Bahamian people's efforts to rebuild their communities. The United Nations has estimated that 70,000 people — roughly 17 percent of the Bahamas' total population — have been left homeless, and government officials in the Bahamas indicate that at least 13,000 individuals are still missing.

As a part of its holistic response to the disaster, The Patterson Foundation is providing up to $100,000 to support NetHope's work to provide connectivity and temporary power solutions to regions in the Bahamas devastated by Hurricane Dorian. Enabling connectivity will help relief organizations and government officials respond more accurately and efficiently. The commitment includes:
  • $50,000 to catalyze additional funder support for NetHope's efforts.
  • $50,000 once NetHope has raised an additional $298,000 — completing its total cash fundraising goal of $398,000. Pledges, in-kind contributions, and government funds are not included
The contribution will help NetHope provide connectivity to more than 50 sites in the affected areas, including medical facilities and shelters. Connectivity will help thousands of people on the islands stay connected to family and friends while providing access to information regarding organized relief efforts, healthcare, and safety. Additionally, connectivity is essential for humanitarian organizations, local nonprofits, and government organizations working in the region to provide relief.

"Access to reliable communications can help people share their whereabouts with loved ones and allow relief workers to effectively establish their response efforts, making it one of the greatest needs in the early aftermath of a disaster like Hurricane Dorian," said Debra Jacobs, president and CEO of The Patterson Foundation. "Along with its vast network of partner organizations, NetHope addresses the world's most catastrophic events with technological solutions that keep these regions connected during and beyond the initial response."

By partnering with technology companies and funders such as Amazon Web Services, Facebook, and Google, NetHope and its alliance of 56 leading global nonprofit members design and implement innovative approaches to solve development, humanitarian, and conservation challenges worldwide.

The Patterson Foundation has provided more than $1.9 million to strengthen NetHope's global response efforts for disasters such as the Syrian Refugee Crisis, the Ebola crisis, the Nepalese earthquake, and NetHope's Caribbean Preparedness Initiative.

"The Patterson Foundation has been a generous, reliable partner to NetHope and its catalytic funding has been vital to our disaster preparation and response program," said Brent Carbno, NetHope managing director of global programs. "This latest support will greatly aid our current efforts in the recovery of the Bahamas, and we hope it inspires other funders to follow The Patterson Foundation's lead and support this work."

Learn more about NetHope and its response efforts in the Bahamas here.

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