Facts About Our Work in Bahamas
Food For The Poor (FFTP) began working in the Bahamas in 2019, after the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Dorian. The storm was the most intense hurricane on record to strike the Bahamas, with winds in the Category 5 storm peaking at 185 mph. The massive storm stalled before making its first landfall on the Abaco Islands on Sept.1, 2019, followed by a second landfall on Grand Bahama Island the next day. FFTP responded immediately to the urgent need for aid and sent disaster pallets via air freight to Nassau. These disaster pallets were received by the HeadKnowles Foundation, working in conjunction with Sandals Foundation, for distribution within days of the disaster.
FFTP partnered with Episcopal, Roman Catholic and Baptist churches in the Bahamas to lay the groundwork for the long-term recovery effort. Dr. Timothy Stewart, President of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, helped to coordinate meetings with FFTP and Bahamian government leaders. The Rev. Dr. Jean Paul Charles, President of the Haitian Pastors League, comprised of nearly 100 clergy across the Bahamas, oversaw distribution of aid to the Haitian community.
In response to the storm, FFTP shipped 47 tractor-trailer loads of relief goods. Items included generators, two-burner stoves, blankets and tarps, rice casserole meals, bags of rice and a general assortment of food, juices, water, chainsaws, diapers, hygiene kits and 5-gallon buckets.
- HercRentals, of Bonita Springs, Fla., donated two Bobcat skid steers to FFTP. Both were shipped to the Episcopal Church in Freeport, Grand Bahama, for debris removal and construction assistance.
- The charity worked with longtime partner Water Mission to install two desalination units on the Abaco Islands in the communities of Treasure Cay and Green Turtle Cay after Hurricane Dorian caused salt water to infiltrate much of the Bahamas’ existing water supply. Two units also were installed on Grand Bahama Island in the communities of McLean's Town and Pelican Point. Each unit provides 4,000 gallons of clean water a day.
- Thirty chassis were delivered to the Bahamas to assist DRA (Disaster Reconstruction Authority) and HeadKnowles Foundation. DRA received 26 and HKF received four. These chassis will assist in removing containers of aid from the ports at a much faster pace.
- FFTP also is partnering with Mission Resolve Foundation, which has been working closely in an ongoing collaboration with the Bahamian government to determine the critical areas of need and to serve as a liaison for those assisting in the recovery effort.
In 2020, FFTP shipped 112 tractor-trailer loads of aid and essential supplies.
- Building materials
- Nonperishable food
- Household supplies
- Personal care items
FFTP has assisted the Bahamas in the past. In 2015, Hurricane Joaquin battered the islands in the southern region of the archipelago on Oct. 1. Hurricane Joaquin caused extensive damage on Acklins Island, Crooked Island, Long Island, San Salvador and Rum Cay, which prompted a desperate appeal from representatives of the Catholic Church in the Bahamas and the South Florida Episcopal diocese for immediate aid.
- FFTP sent 12 tractor-trailer loads of essential items such as building supplies, hygiene kits, bleach and cleaning supplies, propane stoves, blankets, canned meats, canned fish, canned milk and water.
- Rick and Rita Case of the South Florida Rick Case Automotive Group assisted Food For The Poor to help provide aid to the areas devastated by Hurricane Joaquin.
The population is approximately 352,600 residents. The language is English and Protestantism is the largest religious denomination. The Bahamian dollar is the currency and the GDP per capita is $37,101.