54 runners. 54 Islands – One cause. #54Strong.
On the September 6th of this year, Hurricane Irma passed over the 54 islands of the British Virgin Islands as the most powerful Atlantic hurricane in history rated as a Category 5+ causing widespread catastrophic damage. Then on the September 18th, Hurricane Maria hit and destroyed what little was left of the islands.
For the 30,000 residents of the BVI, many of whom have no insurance and little savings, it is clear the road to recovery will be long and expensive. The BVI government has been completely overwhelmed and is unprepared to deal with a disaster of this magnitude. And sadly, the majority of BVI citizens rely on the tourism industry to make a living. But it will truly be years before the islands fully recover and in some cases, some of the major resorts may never be rebuilt (the above picture is our beloved Bitter End Yacht Club on Virgin Gorda).
My sister, Carrie and I, joined 54 Strong to run the Miami Half-Marathon and raise money for our many friends in the BVI, who are truly like family to us. I have set a goal of $1,000 for each mile I will run.
All funds raised will be donated to Richard Branson's Virgin Fund, so 100% of the proceeds will go to the BVI recovery effort. Sir Richard is working to raise money for the long term reconstruction of the BVI and to fund, support and work with local partners on the ground to help build a better, cleaner, stronger and more sustainable Caribbean region.
The funds are donated through the Cayman Islands Charity Network Inc. which is registered in the U.S. as a 501(c) (3) and all donations will be 100% tax deductible.
I hope that you will choose to donate and help some of the friendliest people in the world- the residents of the British Virgin Islands. Simply click on the donate button on my page to support my run.
Thank you in advance for your support.
Happy New Year!