Hurricane Irma’s impact on our community was palpable even in the days before it made landfall on the Florida peninsula. As we emerge from the sanctuary of our fortified homes and shelters, the reality of the challenges facing people and organizations in our community and others like ours throughout Florida, our nation and fragile nations in the Caribbean jolts our senses.

These complex challenges require a quick response as well as a strategy for holistic, long-term recovery. To strengthen immediate and ongoing response efforts, The Patterson Foundation is contributing multi-faceted support to several entities focused on different aspects of the storm.:

This funding follows The Patterson Foundation's previous $250,000 contribution to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy’s (CDP) Hurricane Harvey Recovery Fund, which will support recovery efforts in Texas and the affected regions in the months and years to come. With these latest contributions, The Patterson Foundation has given up to $1 million for recovery efforts for recent major hurricanes.

Why these organizations? Beyond our many local collaborations with the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, The Patterson Foundation has invested in the work of highly effective national and global partners to respond to disasters for more than five years. NetHope is a network of members working on humanitarian needs on at least two continents who are supported by highly experienced information communications technology (ICT) professionals who work with for-profit ICT companies that want to make a difference through both in-kind donations and expertise. Beginning with the earthquakes in Japan up through the Ebola crisis and the global refugee crisis, The Patterson Foundation has been an agile supporter providing flexible funding to catalyze implementation of actionable and effective ICT plans.

The Patterson Foundation was an early funder in creating the Center for Disaster Philanthropy, realizing that disaster funding is multi-staged and needs informed networks to generate the greatest impact. Beginning with Hurricane Sandy up through Irma, The Patterson Foundation has supported CDP's own capacity while demonstrating the value of its ability and expertise through early, catalytic contributions to its recovery funds.

While Hurricane Irma hit with her Category 5 fury in the Caribbean, we are relieved she weakened so that our staff and consultants only experienced power outages, leaky roofs, and landscape upheaval. We are grateful for the impressive emergency management coordination and the heart of those caring for their neighbors and people they just met. Each will have stories to share from Irma — affirming that sharing with others is a boomerang that affirms the good in humanity.

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