In the wake of the Category Five storm that ripped across the Atlantic Ocean in early September, ravaging the Bahamas and Southern U.S. coastline, Seton Hall University’s Office of Mission and Ministry is orchestrating a drive for victims of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas through Catholic Relief Services.
A BBC news article from Sept. 9 reported that Hurricane Dorian left the Bahamas in disarray, with residents reporting extensive damage. The event ripped homes apart, and killed at least 43 people while others are still being rescued from floodwaters. Extensive flood damage has been reported to affect many southern states in the U.S. as well.
Catholic Relief Services, an organization that acts to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas by responding to major emergencies and poverty, has played a large role in aiding those affected by this disaster.
According to the Catholic Relief Services website, the organization is pursuing urgent relief efforts such as cash donations, food assistance, emergency shelter supplies such as tarps, rope and nails, household and living supplies such as blankets, sleeping mats, cooking sets, cups and utensils and hygiene supplies including buckets, soap, sanitary items, and water cans for safe water storage.
Seton Hall’s Division of Volunteer Efforts (DOVE) is asking the community to be as generous as possible during this time of need.
Michelle Peterson, the director of DOVE said that the campus “goes blue” for hurricane relief each year when these natural disasters strike. She expressed her gratitude to the many departments, clubs, and organizations across the University who have already donated to Catholic Relief Services, such as the Seton Hall Student Alumni Association. This organization, according to Peterson, used its annual Bounce and Trounce to raise awareness and funds for those affected by Hurricane Dorian.
“We hope that the love and generosity of our fellow Pirates alleviates some of the anguish of our brothers and sisters who lack the most basic human needs right now: food, water, sanitation, and communication with family,” Peterson said. “Our prayers are with all who suffer.”
Maha Khan, a junior biology major, had not been aware of the drive but expressed how great it was that the SHU community has united to help others.
“Everyone is exposed to the news on social media and it is shown how bad the conditions in the Bahamas are right now, so I would hope that everybody feels motivated to help in some way,” Khan said.
Caitlin Gartley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.