Recovery efforts underway in Bahamas following Hurricane Dorian


Faith Church of the Nazarene in the Bahamas was "gutted" by Hurricane Dorian.

The Bahamas is facing severe damage after enduring wind and rain from Hurricane Dorian for nearly two days. At least 50 people were killed, although many more are still missing and the death toll is expected to climb. In the worst-hit parts of Grand Bahama Island, an estimated 75 to 100 percent of buildings were damaged, and in Marsh Harbor on Great Abaco Island, approximately 90 percent of buildings, homes, and infrastructure were damaged. Around 70,000 people needed food and shelter.

The hurricane moved north toward the United States, making landfall in North Carolina 6 September. When it hit, Dorian was a Category 1 storm. The Outer Banks, a group of barrier islands, were some of the hardest hit areas in the U.S. with water that rose five feet in less than an hour.

Since last week, Nazarenes have been actively responding in their communities. Nazarene Disaster Response leaders were on standby in South and North Carolina, although district superintendents in the area reported the damage to be less extensive than originally anticipated. A Nazarene assessment team reached Freeport and Grand Bahama as soon as possible, bringing aid packages with food and hygiene items. There are five Nazarene churches on Grand Bahama Island.

John Wildgoose, the district superintendent for the Bahamas, said that his church, Faith Church of the Nazarene in the West End, sustained serious damage and is “gutted.” Many homes were filled with four to five feet of water, so even buildings that managed to stand through the wind and rain now have serious flood damage. 

Immediate needs for those in the Bahamas are food, shelter, water, and psychological care and support. Thousands of people have been evacuated to Nassau, which sustained less damage. The response from the Church of the Nazarene in the Bahamas will become clearer as transportation becomes easier; so far, accessing the islands is still extremely difficult.

How You Can Help

Pray

Pray for those who have lost loved ones, and pray for those facing loss of homes and livelihoods. Pray that those who need shelter will be able to find it. Pray for the swift delivery of the supplies and care they need, and pray for the months of recovery ahead. Pray for those who are most vulnerable during and after the storm, especially senior adults, individuals with disabilities, and people living in poverty. Pray for church leaders and churches responding to the needs around them. To send a prayer or note of encouragement, go to ncm.org/pray.

Give

Churches and individuals around the world can provide support through the 2019 Storm Response. Donations will be used for immediate needs, such as water and food, as well as long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts.

To send donations by mail:

In the U.S., make checks payable to "General Treasurer" and send them to: 

Global Treasury Services
Church of the Nazarene
P.O. Box 843116
Kansas City, MO 64184-3116

Be sure to put 134047 in the Memo area.

In Canada, make checks payable to "Church of the Nazarene Canada" and send them to:

Church of the Nazarene Canada
3657 Ponytrail Drive, Mississauga, ON | L4X 1W5

Be sure to put 134047 in the Memo area.

For any other country, give through your local church or district, designating your gift to 2019 Storm Response.