Hurricane Irma Relief for St. John in the US Virgin Islands: How You Can Help

Hurricane Irma Relief for St. John in the US Virgin Islands: How You Can Help

*This article was originally published on 9/8/2017. It was last updated at 12:30 am EST on 9/11, and will be updated continuously for accuracy and new developments.*

Gifft-Hill-devastation-from-hurricane-Irma-St
Devastation from Hurricane Irma on Gifft Hill – in the center of St. John. Photo taken by Andi Herritt Vacharat who was on island during the storm. Fortunately, family members Michelle Pullen Herzog and Dan Herzog were not home during the storm.

We’ve put together this article to consolidate accurate, locally-sourced information on how you can help the Hurricane Irma relief efforts on St. John, US Virgin Islands. Several different lists and sources of info are going around social media, creating some confusion and potentially spreading false information. Unfortunately, there are also donation scams popping up.

Our goal is to be accurate and to make sure that resources get to the right places and people. We will update this information frequently.

If you have new information for St. John that you feel should be included, leave a comment with the details. We will either publish as a comment or add to the body of the article. Please include your contact info in the comment so we may get in touch for further details if necessary.

Latest Updates ( most recent on top):

Update as of 12am EST 9/11

FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO LEAVE STJ – TOMORROW’S 9/11 FERRY EVACUATION SCHEDULE!!!

1.Bad girl – 24pax – coral bay – 12pm

2. Betty Ann – 36pax- Cruz bay – btw 12:30-2pm

3. Milemark – 36pax – Cruz bay

-btw 12:30-2pm

*4. Adventurer- 40(?) pax – coral bay – 2:30-3:00pm

Adventurer is a maybe

All service is weather permitting.

All of the boats are to St Croix.

St.Croix has shelters available for people that need them, a hot meal and a little bit of comfort available and ready.

Also important to note that the boats are first come first serve. Don’t worry more boats are coming and we will keep coming.

NOTE: In Cruz Bay people might want to wait up on the hill if they’re worried about safety concerns around the docks. Wait until you see the boat coming in and then head down.

Update as of 11am EST 9/10

  • Starting tomorrow, planes should be available to evacuate people. Most likely, the destination will be Philadelphia, as FL is not an option right now.

    “People are anxious to get out and we are trying to get them out as soon as possible.” -Jesse Vann, STJ Resident working as Stateside Irma Relief in collaboration with STJ Rescue

  • Today: Helicopters are running back and forth between STX and STJ with supplies. More supplies are expected this week.
  • STJ Rescue is working with Global DIRT teams on search and rescue.
  • Reporting that the VI Government, National Guard, etc. are all playing well together and being responsive. St. Croix has shelters set up to receive evacuees.
  • Communications difficulties still plague relief efforts. Currently, a router on a ladder is the main source of internet service for the island. The fiber optic cable on STJ was accidentally cut by WAPA while trying to clear power lines.
  • Reporting that evacuation shuttles are running sporadically between Cruz Bay and STX and PR, but clearing the incoming boats has been arduous and wait times are long. Women and children first. No pets. ID Required.
  • Fema has planes and other private evacuations are in process, but STT airport is still closed to commercial flights.

 

Current Details

Reports out of St. John are spotty, as the entire island has lost power.  Roads are blocked, power lines are down, making it difficult and dangerous even to navigate on foot. There is no cell phone service on the vast majority of the island.The almost complete lack of communication makes it difficult to know exactly the extent of the damage and if there are any casualties or people who need to be evacuated immediately for medical purposes.

People on island are slowly being able to get in touch with family members in the states – some after standing for six hours in line to use a satellite phone in Coral Bay. In Cruz Bay, there appears to be some cell signal and wifi available in a few places but, of course, battery life must be rationed.

St. John Rescue has already been on the ground and have more emergency responders ready to go. The Coast Guard is not letting any boat traffic besides ferries and emergency vehicles arrive on St. John, and they’re limiting it to Cruz Bay. So emergency help needs to either arrive by ferry from St. Thomas (difficult, because the airport is closed) or by helicopter or ferry from St. Croix. There are people working tirelessly to make this happen.

Reports are not as forthcoming as many of us would like. But that’s because 1. Efforts are focused on getting there to help, not necessarily in announcing a play by play on Facebook, and 2. Communication on the island is so difficult right now. So when help does arrive, it’s hard to confirm.

That being said, we know that local charities like the St. John Community Foundation are already working to feed people and provide shelter. They are working out of restaurants in Cruz Bay that have been cleared for safety.

Fortunately, more help is on the way. Emergency responders have already arrived via helicopters from St. Croix and more are on the way.

St. John Internet Service Post Hurricane Irma
The current source of Internet on St. John.

 

Update as of 7:00pm EST 9/9:

  • Emergency medical teams and supplies arrived at the Myrah Keating Clinic today via helicopter from St.Croix. Emergency personnel report that the clinic is now running at top notch. (Note: They are only taking extreme medical emergencies at the moment and these are being medevaced out.) No deaths have been reported on St.John.
  • World class search and rescue (S&R) teams also arrived today by boat and helicopter and are working tirelessly to find those previously unaccounted for. Hold tight! They are still searching!We are compiling and consolidating lists so that we can get better information to our S&R teams.Read our latest post for important information on finding unaccounted for people: Update on St. John Hurricane Irma Relief: How to Help Find Loved Ones on St. John
  • Communication is still very difficult in all areas with the exception of Cruz Bay. Ronnie’s Pizza has a good cell service, not sure if he’s got pie to sell yet!The good news is that re-establishing communication is top priority so we can get relief in fast. Emergency communications equipment arrived in Coral Bay this morning, the area hardest hit by Irma.
  • The Coast Guard opened Cruz Bay to emergency traffic and ferry boats. Ferries with 40-70 person capacity have been running folks off St. John to St.Croix and Puerto Rico. While roads are not officially opened, as there is much debris, some vehicles have managed to make their way across the island in search of friends and neighbors and supplies like water and food.

We just received this confirmed updates at 11:00am EST 9/9:

  • The strongest part of the eye wall went over Coral Bay. It was hit with the most force in the Caribbean.
  • Yesterday, 12,000 lbs of food and water were dropped.

 

Trustworthy Facebook Pages

Facebook is where most people are spending their time posting updates and photos. This is fantastic, but can also perpetuate rumors and information can be rather scattered. The following Facebook pages are trustworthy sources of information:

St. John Irma Relief

St. John Rescue

St. John Community Foundation

Coral Bay Community Council

 

Are friends and family safe?

Lists have popped up on Facebook that include people who have been seen alive and well after the storm. It has been more difficult to report people in Coral Bay, as they are completely shut off from communication besides the use of one satellite phone. Some areas are completely impassable, as is the main road into Coral Bay.

The St. John Roll Call Safe from Irma app has been created as a way to verify who has been accounted for since the hurricane. This is the only hyper-verified electronic list right now and should be the one used.

This continues to be the most frustrating and anxiety-producing aspect of the immediate aftermath. However, no deaths have been reported yet and more people are popping up safe every hour.

 

Where should I donate money?

We strongly recommend cash donations to the St. John Rescue and the St. John Community Foundation. Both of these organizations are run by people who live on St. John. They have been doing good on the island for years. We trust them and implore you to donate to these established, local organizations.

St. John Rescue

St. John Rescue needs immediate funds to help get rescuers, supplies and equipment to the island ASAP. They are already mobilized and on the ground and will be able to do more with more funds.

They started a Go Fund Me campaign specifically for this purpose. Some people are concerned about the 5% fee Go Fund Me takes for use of their platform. This has already been earmarked by STJ Rescue as a cost. But if you would prefer to donate directly through their website where the PayPal fee is 2.5%, we have also provided that link below.

Donate to the St. John Rescue Go Fund Me campaign here.

Donate to St. John Rescue through their website here.

Here is the latest Facebook update by St. John Rescue. Even though they’ve raised over $100,000 – they’ve spent most of it already and desperately need more. Below is their FB post from this morning. You can follow their page by clicking on any of the links in the post.

 

The St. John Community Foundation

The STCF needs help feeding and sheltering people in the immediate aftermath and will undoubtedly be part of the rebuilding process in the months and years to come. They are already working with the Red Cross and FEMA in these efforts.

You can donate to the St. John Community Foundation here.

Here is a wonderfully informative update from the St. John Community Foundation Facebook Page this morning (9/10) at 10a.

On 9/9, we received this email from Celia Kalousek, the longtime Director of the St. John Community Foundation:

Persons interested in helping Hurricane Irma disaster response in St. John can best support the relief effort by making a cash donation instead of sending donated goods and services. Cash donations to voluntary disaster relief organizations enables them to purchase exactly what is most needed by the survivors and helps the local economy recover from the disaster as well.

Donated items require voluntary agencies to spend money and considerable time for sorting, inventorying, warehousing, and distribution. Additionally, there is no state or federal transportation for donated goods unless they fill an identified critical need. There are a number of voluntary agencies receiving cash donations for Hurricane Irma relief – and more options will be provided as they are identified.

As you may know, we were formed in the aftermath of Hurricane Marilyn and have been responsibly managing local and federal funds for over 28 years. We have a fully operational board who approves all funding (none of whom are paid) – feel free to ask us any questions, look us up on D&B, and Guidestar, etc. I can also share our Certificate of Good Standing with the VI Gov’t and our EIN # is 66-0463145. Your donation is fully tax deductible.

I am also on the Board of the USVI VOAD (Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster), a nationally recognized disaster response agency and partners of local EOC’s (Emergency Operations Centers) and the territorial ESF-6 (headed by Dept. of Human Services under the VI Govt). Our requests and intentions for assistance will be vetted through them to limit overlap/duplication in response needs. We are in daily contact with Red Cross on the ground and FEMA locally and nationally and know what is available and are told how we can assist to fill the gaps.

Again, you can donate to the St. John Community Foundation here.

St. Croix Group: Irma Relief for our Sister Islands

This blessed group out of St. Croix is also providing immediate relief to St. John by sending boats from Caribbean Sea Adventures to Coral Bay with supplies.

They have been continually running back and forth between STX and STJ/STT with emergency supplies and they are not planning to stop anytime soon.

Donate to Irma Relief for our Sister Islands.

Hurricane-Irma-Relief-Boat-from-St-Croix-Caribbean-Sea-Adventures-
Loading Caribbean Sea Adventures with supplies for St. John. They have already departed!

Virgin Islands Relief Fund

Virgin Islands Relief Fund Inc., was started by local residents to help ensure the efforts of all donations goes to help those islanders affected by Hurricane Irma. The goal is to rebuild the infrastructure, build schools and help businesses get back up and running. https://virginislandsrelief.org

How can I donate supplies?

At this point in time, cash sent to local organizations is a far better donation than supplies. Donated goods require far more resources from nonprofits to process than cash, which allows them to purchase exactly what they need when they need it. Please read the email from St. John Community Foundation Director, Celia Kalousek, above.

 

How can I use my voice to help?

  • Spread this article on your social media accounts.
  • Spread posts and updates from the organizations mentioned in this article on your social media accounts.
  • Bug the media to get more coverage for the devastation in the US Virgin Islands. Emailing to local affiliates and then following-up with a phone call has been a constructive avenue for some folks already.
  • If you have contact with loved ones on St. John and they are sending you photos to post, make sure that the caption includes permission for the media to use. State something like this: “all pictures, quotes & content are available to the public domain with no fees or reservations”
  • Members of the media are, in fact, looking for people on the island to talk to but the problem is the lack of communication. If you have contact with someone on the island who has cell service, leave a comment with your contact details and we will get you connected to someone in the media.

 

Major Help from Celebrity Friend

Kenny Chesney, who owns property on St. John and has had a longtime presence there, has helped organize efforts to get emergency responders there immediately. We have this glorious update as of 1:45 EST on 9/8:

Kenny Chesney’s guys are here!!! Cleared for one helo trip right now to STJ. They are at STX airport leaving now. Headed to St.John Clinic. They are loaded with chainsaws and supplies. We also have helos with 8-10 first responders on the next flight. Coral bay priority mission today for broadband equipment and tower restoration.

Here is an interview he did on the morning of 9/8 with Headline News.

We appreciate Kenny Chesney coming through for St. John when it counts the most!!!!! We need more generous and influential people to get behind the “Love for Love City” campaign.

The info to donate to Kenny Chesney’s Love for Love City campaign has just been published on his website. If you’d like to donate through Kenny, here is the link.

https://kennychesney.com/news/448917/hurricaneirmamessage

 

Are you into hashtags? Here are some to use:

#vistrong #lovecitystrong #vinice #usvinice #peoplepoweredvi #whattodovi

We will be adding more info and resources here continuously on how you can help!

helicoper-rescue-mission-to-Jost-Van-Dyke
Helicopter rescue mission to Jost Van Dyke,  St. John’s next door neighbor.

 

 

 

Hurricane Irma Relief for St. Thomas and the British Virgin Islands

While St. Thomas and the British Virgin Islands were also devastated by the storm, our direct contacts are out of St. John. To be as accurate and effective as possible, we’re limiting this article to St. John for now.

If anyone has information on a similar consolidated effort to provide vetted information on how to help with Hurricane Irma relief on our neighboring Virgin Islands, please leave a comment with the details and your contact information.

Comments are moderated before publishing, so we will vet all answers and either publish as a comment and/or add to the body of the article.

 

More Information

Articles on donating effectively to disaster relief:
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/best-intentions-when-disaster-relief-brings-anything-but-relief/

http://blog.givewell.org/2013/11/12/6-tips-on-disaster-relief-giving/

 

We will be updating this page continuously. Please leave a comment below with contact information if you have more information that should be posted on this page.

Thank you for loving St. John.

St. John Irma ReliefGlobal DIRT

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Post Discussion

105 thoughts on “Hurricane Irma Relief for St. John in the US Virgin Islands: How You Can Help

  1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Cat S.

    Can you all change the link from the roll call website to a direct link to the app? https://irmasafetycheck.herokuapp.com. That way it’s less hidden! Thank you SO much for doing this! Sending love from the states.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Cat! Yes, we just made this change. Thank you!

      1 year ago

    2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Josh K

      I don’t want to donate money, I want to come down there myself with my tool belt and get dirty for a couple months and rebuild. How do I do that??? Everywhere I look justs asks for money..

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Jennifer Knowles

        Understandable! When that opportunity arises, we will post about it here. 🙂 Right now, unless you are a trained in emergency response, it’s not an option.

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Boyd L. Bark

          Boyd here from Oklahoma.., count me in when the rebuilding phase kicks in please :)!

          1 year ago

        2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jerry Collier

          Ma’am my name is Jerry Collier I’m hazwoper certified I’m heavy equipment operator underground utility contractor commercial and residential Builder I would very much appreciate it if you could help me find someone to help get me to St Thomas or St John I think I can be a great help I am multifaceted trained in almost every aspect of construction work and emergency service I would appreciate any help you can get to me

          1 year ago

          1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
            Meagan Moran

            Jerry, I have a very talented and eager construction crew here in Fort Worth, TX that did demo and reconstructio in New Orleans when Katrina hit. We are also looking to get to St. Thomas to help but are struggling finding any resources or contacts. If you get any info O would greatly appreciate an email and I would love to do the same for you guys. Email is Meaganlee25@gmail.com. Thanks and good luck!

            1 year ago

        3. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          John

          I am a RN trauma Nurse trained in emergency response and want to come help. How can I do that

          1 year ago

          1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
            Jennifer Knowles

            My connection on St.John who is involved in this relief effort just got a phone call from the DOH saying they are not needing medical volunteers at this time…however, they continue to keep updating the list in the event that this changes.

            1 year ago

      2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Julie

        I also want to come and help.

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jennifer Knowles

          On St.John: We are encouraging anyone who wants to come to St. John to volunteer to register at https://usvivoad.communityos.org/cms/irma then email the director of The St.John Community Foundation at celia@sjcf.org with your confirmation. We are in the process of vetting all volunteer offers and know that many aspects of this recovery will take weeks, months and even years ….and we WILL need you.

          1 year ago

  2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Suzi Batdorff

    You can add Kenny’s link as a safe fund raising site.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Do you have a link? There’s nothing on his website yet.

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Trudi Lee

        His site for foundation is up now there is an address for Nashville to send donations n paypal

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jennifer Knowles

          Got it! We added the link last night. Thank you!

          1 year ago

  3. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Suzette Lynn

    Could you please put me in contact with a reputable charity in St Thomas? I am from there and would like to donate funds. Also, I am trying to facilitate care packages to my family in French Town. Could you by any chance have any information on how I can do that. When usps will be available. I’m getting no information from anyone I’ve been able to reach.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Suzette,

      I recommend donating to the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands. They have already started a fund. Here is a link to their Facebook page that has more information: https://www.facebook.com/CFVirginIslands/

      I do not believe that USPS is running yet and it is too early to tell when it’s going to be back up and going. As we know more information, we will add to to this page.

      1 year ago

    2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Lindsay

      The fundraiser in the article out if St. Croix, (Irma Relief for our Sister Islands) is raising money for St. Thomas and St. John. They’re friends of mine, and doing great things for both islands.

      1 year ago

  4. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Kirsten Quinteros

    I have a team of nurses and medical professionals from National Staffing Solutions of Utah ready and willing to go help. We have secured many offers for lodging for our personnel from hotels and people of St Croix . We have been trying to coordinate with Caribbean Sea Adventures, Fema, and many other people on St Croix to see how our team can help. Please IM me and let me know if we can be of assistance.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Kirsten. This is fantastic. At this point, however, there is no infrastructure to even get a team to St. John other than by slow ferry or helicopter. Although, I am sure that if the need and opportunity arises, there will be calls for help. We have your email and will notify you if this happens. Thank you!!!

      1 year ago

  5. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Patrick Bennett

    Thanks so much for pulling this page together! We’ve added your links to our wider page here: https://www.uncommoncaribbean.com/2017/09/08/hurricane-irma/

    Let us know if there are any updates. Wishing you all the best.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Awesome! I will also add your link in the article body above. Thank you!

      1 year ago

  6. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Lauren Smith Janzen

    Tim Duncan is matching up to a million dollars in donations to help USVI. He’ll be chartering a plane to move supplies in and work with people on the ground. Here’s the article: https://www.theplayerstribune.com/tim-duncan-hurricane-irma-us-virgin-islands/ It links to a direct donation link through YouCaring at the end.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Thank you for this! So glad that Tim Duncan has stepped up.

      1 year ago

  7. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Rajesh ramlall

    Hi can anyone please help me I am trying to get in contact with my brother vaman ramlall who work for Richard Branson in the virgin island haven’t hear from him for three days now any information is really appreciate my email address is rr7286084@gmail.com or 917_238_4413

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hello Rajesh. I’m sorry to hear about your brother. The information out of VG seems to be a lot less robust than the info out of St. John. I will do some checking this morning and reply to you with what I find out about getting info out of Virgin Gorda.

      1 year ago

    2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Patricia brethauer

      I heard yesterday that the Branson compound was damaged but all the people were ok….hope this helps…

      1 year ago

  8. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Diane Bauder

    Dana Bartlett Carolina Corral has 21 horses and donkeys if someone could bring horse food Alfalfa squares beet pulp water I’m sure it would be greatly appreciated I have not heard anything from her I’m so worried

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      You’re right. Several people are worried about Dana and her animals. These are good items to be included in the shipment organized by St. John Irma Relief folks, mentioned above.

      1 year ago

  9. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Shelley wilson Hancock

    Could we please get some kind of confirmation of supplies being delivered to these people in St. John, a picture, some post saying someone received help, anything to help with the stigma that no help as far a food and water and other needed supplies are getting to the people, especially those in the Coral Bay Area? I got confirmation that my family was safe, but I know their supply has got to be running low, and they were prepared, so I can imagine some others and their needs.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Shelly. I’ve updated this article just this morning to address these concerns. They do have enough food and water – for the immediate period. Heroic efforts are being made to get supplies to people on St. John today before Jose. We will keep updating this page as we know more.

      1 year ago

  10. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Allison

    Is there a similar check-in app or source for Virgin Gorda residents, or would the above include them? A friend is searching for his brother who lives there.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Unfortunately, I don’t think there is the same kind of effort for Virgin Gorda. One of my best friends lives there but is off island for vacation. She still has friends she’s not sure are safe and the information out of VG seems to be less robust than what’s coming out of St. John. I will look into it this morning and report back.

      1 year ago

  11. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Krista

    Do you know if the St. Thomas Airport is open? Wondering if it is accessible for flights with supplies to get to the island.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Krista. The St. Thomas airport is not open yet. They will first open for military planes to bring in supplies. The St. Croix airport is open, however. That is where supplies are being flown in now. People are working around the clock to get helicopters of emergency responders and supplies to St. John from St. Croix.

      1 year ago

  12. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    June Blankin

    Thanks for clarifying the best ways to donate. I LOVE ST JOHN!!! I work for American Airlines and live in VA . Is there a way to find out when individual volunteers will be allowed to arrive and help recovery efforts? Where or who would we contact once we arrived?

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      At this point only emergency responders are qualified to be on the island for volunteer purposes. I am sure that there will be organizational efforts for people to donate their time for recovery and rebuilding. As that happens, we will update this page.

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Todd White

        Please respond when volunteers can arrive. I’d love to help rebuild.

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jennifer Knowles

          The Virgin Islands Relief Fund virginislandsrelief.org has a section where you can also offer volunteer service. Right now, I think this is the place to start. I also have emails into the SJCF because I believe they are collecting names too. I just want to verify where to send you. Thanks so much for having a big heart. Love City needs people like you.

          1 year ago

      2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Pam Trumbull

        Hi, I’m an ER PA and a paramedic with over 20 yrs experience, including NYC 9/11. I have a place in PR and will be there 9/14 – 9/20. I’m happy to hop over and help out, if you just tell me where to show up.

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jennifer Knowles

          DOH is saying they are not needing medical volunteers at this time. Thanks Pam!!! xox

          1 year ago

  13. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Darlene

    We have usually taken our Thanksgiving vacation in the USCI, and our hearts go out to all in St. John since it is our favorite island. He does high voltage substation work. Is there any way to volunteer his abilities during the Thanksgiving time?

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      We will be compiling a list of volunteers who have skills such as that. Please stay tuned for how to sign up. Thank you for your thoughtfulness.

      1 year ago

    2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Christine Eller

      Hi…I’m the crew leader for American Hiking Society Volunteer Vacations scheduled over the Thanksgiving holiday with the National Park Service and Friends of VINP. Our scope of cleanup work has obviously changed but there are still a few openings. ..if the trip is still on.
      Google AHS Volunteer Vacations for more info.

      1 year ago

  14. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Elizabeth Walther

    Hi Jennifer,
    We are desperately seeking information on Catherine Turner (a writer for What to do VI), her husband Fuego (who I found on the list, than God) and their son Buck. Do you know if Cat and Buck are ok?
    Love and prayers to all,
    Elizabeth (Cat’s sister)

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Elizabeth. I can only confirm that the people Catherine and Buck were staying with (Sandy and Alan Molher) during the storm have been checked in SAFE and that Fuego is too. I hope that this means that Catherine and Buck are also safe. I am involved in many areas of the rescue efforts and identifying unaccounted for persons is part of that. In fact we have a post coming out tonight about this very subject. Please reach out to me on FaceBook.

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Bonnie Brooke Mitchell

        I too will look for you on Facebook, and your updates on who is okay. It has been a few years since I have been down there, but for a good long while it was my once a year treat to be a house guest at the Knaplunds out at the East End, and once I met Catherine and Fuego and Buck as a baby… unforgettable! Made so many friends, I look for news…. THANK YOU!

        1 year ago

  15. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Nikki Goldman

    Hi, I am a graphic designer (who was raised on st.john) and would like to make a thorough infographic on how people can help stj with donations/supplies. I appreciate all of the very
    relevant and concise information you have here and would like to include you as a link
    for people to find out more! Please let me know what you think I should include in the infographic and who I can send a rough copy to check for legitimacy of my information. I am
    in contact with the STJ Rescue (Jamie, Heidi and Jesse), but any information you want me to include would be helpful too! I want to create something to lessen the confusion and provide a trustworthy information.
    Thank you!
    -Nikki

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Awesome! We are also in contact with those peeps and the larger team of logistics people working out of STX. Please send your submission to whattodovi@gmail.com Thank you Nikki. So glad to hear you Dad is safe.

      1 year ago

  16. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Lou Eisenbrandt

    Our family has been to St. John many times over the last 40 years. Our most recent visit was just in July. Our thoughts are with the wonderful people there and some of our favorite places in Mongoose Junction, Skinny Legs in Coral Bay, the Lime Inn, and the beautiful beaches especially Hawks nest.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Please keep those beautiful thoughts going. With love and support and time St.John will flourish again.

      1 year ago

  17. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Terry Stutts

    Can you list the dates, approx. times and where Islanders of St. Thomas can go to pick up gas, water and food. We have our only child there, Erika with her husband, Tyler, that had to re-locate from VG and fought Irma there and now Jose. Thank you so much!

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Terry, I will do my best to find out this information and post it. I know that gas is also an issue on St.John. This article is focussing St.John as that is where our efforts have been directed.

      1 year ago

  18. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Sean Stanton

    Thank you for sharing. I went through Marilyn in St Thomas in 1995. Came back to STJ twice since to visit.My prayers are with you all. Grateful to Jah for life. We will be making a cash donation to the relief effort.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      It’s really an incredible experience to go through a hurricane, but I have never experienced one like this (I was not on island). Yes grateful for my life and those that I love that survived. Thank you for supporting those that are doing all they can to support the island.

      1 year ago

  19. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      karen

      Coral bay

      1 year ago

  20. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Michele Bernier

    I have been trying to check on family members in St. Thomas. Is there a link to a list of those who have checked in as safe?

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
  21. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Alix Powers

    I know my St. Johnian and St. Thomas friends/Fam have so much to worry about with their entire lives upended.. but, I am putting together a huge benefit here in CB for the Animal Care Center in STJ, Carolina Corral, and also want to include the Shelters..Humane Society of STT and Horse Rescue in STT… can anyone give me info on the shelters in STT.. I know the ACC in STJ.. originally we were going to do physical donations of pet food and care supplies and captain a boat out to take there, but all ports are closed unless you are military or redcross. I can’t reach some of my friends there so anyone on island that can help would be hugely appreciated

    1 year ago

  22. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Tony Visalli

    We are STJ homeowners since 1983 and want to help .
    We have a warehouse and staff near the Crowley Shipping port in Pennsauken NJ .
    We can stage emergency supply’s and building materials and load containers to ship to STJ via PR . Please put me in contact with anyone that can assist us in this endeavor or can use this service .

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Thank you, Tony! I have passed your contact info along. My guess is that this will be very helpful in the weeks and months to come. I took your cell phone number out of your comment so as not to publish it to the world. But it has been passed along to people integral to the search/rescue/supply organizational efforts.

      1 year ago

    2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Rachel Cicigline

      Hi Tony,
      Myself and many others in the NY, PA, and NJ area are collecting at Drop Off locations and need a place for a main Drop Off and shipment. Is this something you could help with? Ivo Philbert is in charge of collection in NYC and is organizing these locations on behalf of the Family Resource Center in St. Thomas. Ivo can also be contacted and I will supply his information privately when I hear back. Thank you!

      1 year ago

  23. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Ann O'Brien

    Do you need to organize contacts in Philadelphia if that is where planes will be arriving with residents? I can help with that.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Ann,

      I would check with with this FB page because they are the ones organizing efforts in Philadelphia. Jesse Vann is there. He is an STJ Resident who happened to be on vacation when Irma hit. https://www.facebook.com/StJohnIrmaRelief/

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        flynn rhodes

        this link is broken
        what is an address to send supplies for St John to?

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jennifer Knowles

          Seaview Building Solutions
          St John Relief
          3301 NW 22 Terr. Suite 300F
          Pompano Beach FL 33069

          virginislandsrelief.org

          1 year ago

  24. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Julie Hayne 8032610411

    Please add me to your contact list – my husband (a former Marine) and myself want and are committed to helping locally and from afar. Please let us know when the airport opens and we can connect to come and work, bringing whatever resources we can facilitate. The spirit of St John will rebound stronger and more resilient than ever.

    1 year ago

  25. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Ramie Ackley

    I will be donating money you help the people of St. John for sure! But, I am also wondering if there will be an effort made to help the donkeys, goats, and other sweet animals that roam the island? I used to always drop off food and water for them while on vacation there. I am concerned. Where can I send funds for them as well?

    1 year ago

  26. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Ramie Ackley

    I will be donating money to help the people of St. John for sure! But, I am also wondering if there will be an effort made to help the donkeys, goats, and other sweet animals that roam the island? I used to always drop off food and water for them while on vacation there. I am concerned. Where can I send funds for them as well?

    1 year ago

  27. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    James Henson

    Im interested in spending time working helping the people of St, John build their life back to noromal. I’m fit, healthy trained in aircraft mechanic, I will serve food or anything you need, I just want to help/

    1 year ago

  28. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Merlin Price

    Hey Jennifer, I am a first responder, and own a safety consulting and construction business. I am also good at logistics, purchasing safety equipment and other related disaster equipment. I would love to come help you guys out on anything needed. I am will to pay for my own flight but do not know how to get there from New Orleans. I can operate any piece of heavy equipment, boats, chain saw and all power tools. Willing to help just let me know when to deploy. I am offshore right now and will be able to come Oct 01 or sooner if you need the help. I may be able to get more first responders to come as well. Do you places for us to bunk down? Prayers for you’ll from Cajun Country USA.

    1 year ago

  29. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Mark Wesa

    My wife and I have been coming down to St John for over 10 years. I would also like to bring my tools and help with the relief effort. I own an electrical contracting company and would like to mobilize a crew, come down to the island, and help restore power. Can you direct me to the right people so we can help in the relief effort.

    1 year ago

  30. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    richard Cardoza

    hello…..I am a home owner on St john, and will be flying in to STT on 9/17 with the sole purpose to assess the damage at my home on Gift Hill and provide any help to my neighbors. Arial helicopter shots are inconclusive and telecom is nonexistent, therefore I must assess personally. can you please provide any passenger or car ferry information from Red Hook or Charlotte Amalie to Cruz Bay. HELP PLEASE !! THANK YOU !!!!!

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Ferry to Cruz Bay is open running 2 ferries per day STJ-RedHook Noon and 3, Redhook to STj 1:30-and 5. Please keep in mind that the curfew of 6pm until noon every day is being enforced on STT but not so on STJ. Stj is unofficially 6pm to 6am to allow people to evacuate. I don’t have any info on documents required to get to STJ. My contact said she would look into but didn’t think you would need any. So if the airport opens on Sept 16th the curfew also needs to be lifted on STT in order to get to STJ and make the scheduled ferry and then arrive within STJ’s curfew. Tricky – Hope that helps

      1 year ago

  31. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Dawnyale Allen

    Hello! My name is Dawnyale and my boyfriend Christopher would really appreciate the opportunity to come and help in any capacity that is needed. Please let us know when and where we can be used.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Dawnyale the Virgin Islands Relief Fund virginislandsrelief.org has a section where you can also offer volunteer service. Right now, I think this is the place to stare. I also have emails into the SJCF because I believe they are collecting names too. I just want to verify where to send you. We really appreciate you helping us. I plan on writing a more extensive article on this shortly as a resource.

      1 year ago

    2. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      On St.John: We are encouraging anyone who wants to come to St. John to volunteer to register at https://usvivoad.communityos.org/cms/irma then email the director of The St.John Community Foundation at celia@sjcf.org with your confirmation. We are in the process of vetting all volunteer offers and know that many aspects of this recovery will take weeks, months and even years ….and we WILL need you.

      1 year ago

  32. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Allison

    This is a great resource and the only one I’ve seen for any of the Islands. Are there any sites directed at helping out those on St Thomas, St Martin, Barbuda, etc that you’re aware of or anything about people who live there getting back to the Islands? I know it’s in the body and you responded to previous posters that this is a focus on St John, but I haven’t found any information on helping the other islands. My parents are in St Thomas and my boyfriend and I were in the states when the hurricane hit (and now stuck here without home or work, as there is no travel allowed). We want to figure out how to get home as soon as we can to help and how to get supplies to them, in the meantime. When we are able to get home, we plan to help all of the islands as much as we can and many friends are planning to travel to help with rebuilding when the time comes. Thanks for your time and efforts!

    1 year ago

  33. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Lenore DeGeorge McGinn

    I love St John and was married by AnneMarie Porter ( I hope she is ok ) I’m aware of her animal rescue involvement. I realize the devistation and the need to help everyone but is there any need for volunteers from the Veterinary field ( DVM,s and technicians ) for the animals ( owned or otherwise)

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      I’d love to see something like this started up and I have nudging some people who are also concerned about the animals. Stayed tuned for more to come.

      1 year ago

  34. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Greg Kelsey

    willing to take our first st john vacation and turn it into a permenant like. ready to work hard.

    1 year ago

  35. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Greg Kelsey

    could become expats have some skills and cash

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      The Virgin Islands Relief Fund virginislandsrelief.org has a section where you can also offer volunteer service. Right now, I think this is the place to start. I also have emails into the SJCF because I believe they are collecting names too. I just want to verify where to send you. Thanks so much for having a big heart. Love City needs people like you.

      1 year ago

  36. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Charlie Stackhouse

    USCG Licensed Captain; familiar with USVI/BVI waters, potentially available to operate boats if needed.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      The Virgin Islands Relief Fund virginislandsrelief.org has a section where you can also offer volunteer service. Right now, I think this is the place to start. I also have emails into the SJCF because I believe they are collecting names too. I just want to verify where to send you. Thanks so much for having a big heart. Love City needs people like you.

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Charlie Stackhouse

        Thanks Jennifer, I have also submitted my name/contact info on the VI Relief Fund website

        1 year ago

  37. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Kathleen Sullivan

    I am former Military Police and would very much like to get over St Johns to help. I live in PR. What do I need to do?

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Sorry for the delay in responding to your heartfelt offer. I’m guessing PR may need you after Maria. xox

      1 year ago

  38. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Karen

    Hi,
    Do you know if the Caneel Bay Employee Irma Relief Fund is legitimate? The staff at the Caneel Bay resort showed such kindness to my elderly grandmother when our family stayed there that I would like to direct a donation to them. Also, do you know if the churches on the island are organizing any relief efforts? Many thanks for providing information to those of us who have fond memories of visiting St. John and know it will recover.

    1 year ago

  39. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Ann Marie Lorenz

    Hi – I am just a regular health administration professional that would like to help with volunteering when we are able. Also – is there anybody setting up US mainland housing for the folks leaving the islands?

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      On St.John: If you are willing and able to put people up, send an email (subject line: Accommodations Available Stateside or Accommodations Available on St. John) to celia@sjcf.org and we add you to the inventory of options for displaced St. Johnians!

      1 year ago

  40. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Cheryl Heal

    I had reservations at Cinnamon Bay for early Jan. I have a place deep in my heart for St.John and its breaking. I was thinking of keeping my airline res. and going to volunteer at that time. If anyone has any info to help me head in that direction, I would greatly appreciate it..

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      On St.John: We are encouraging anyone who wants to come to St. John to volunteer to register at https://usvivoad.communityos.org/cms/irma then email the director of The St.John Community Foundation at celia@sjcf.org with your confirmation. We are in the process of vetting all volunteer offers and know that many aspects of this recovery will take weeks, months and even years ….and we WILL need you.

      1 year ago

  41. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Cecilia Mims

    I have received several requests to participate in a USVI “Adopt a family” program which entails sending a package of requested goods to a particular family. Your detailed post here indicates that sending items is not a good idea and cash donations are better. St. John is very special to my family, and we want to help. It’s hard to know best venue with most impact. Prayers for all affected.

    1 year ago

  42. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Ed Atwater

    I will be taking a leave of absence from my place of work, at the appropriate time, to come help with the relief efforts for a couple of months. I have a place to stay, provided it survives Maria, and hope to bring skills that will help in the recovery of the island. Please keep me in the loop as to the needs and timing. Thank you.

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      On St.John: We are encouraging anyone who wants to come to St. John to volunteer to register at https://usvivoad.communityos.org/cms/irma then email the director of The St.John Community Foundation at celia@sjcf.org with your confirmation. We are in the process of vetting all volunteer offers and know that many aspects of this recovery will take weeks, months and even years ….and we WILL need you.

      1 year ago

  43. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Matthew Dye

    Hi,
    I work for a government agency and we’re sending teams out to restore power/electricity to St Thomas and possibly to St Croix after. My team is currently seeking shelter in Puerto Rico due to Hurricane Maria. I will be purchasing equipment and rentals (such as vehicles) for my team to support their efforts. I won’t be physically with the team, but I will be working behind to scenes to ensure they have all of the materials they need for mission success. I did my research and noticed that the local hardware stores are temporarily closed. If I were to make purchases here in mainland United States, how can I go about sending the goods to my team that will be located in St Thomas? Please advise of any potential ships or aircraft that can ship our gear to them. Thank you for your help!

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Matthew, I only know of how to ship via container ship at the moment and that is not speedy (10 days). I would imagine that the government agency you work with may have faster supply channels for what you are doing.

      1 year ago

      1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
        Christina

        Hello, would you be able to reply with the information on about container shipping? I have a donor that would like to send out pallets of supplies to St. John’s so I am collecting the information on their behalf. Thank you for your assistance.

        1 year ago

        1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
          Jennifer Knowles

          Vince Scapecki has been supplying building supplies to STJ for over 20 years. He is organizing containers direct to STJ. He is working with VIRelief.org to take donated items but also can take items labeled for individuals. Below is the address. I know Vincent is really busy so it probably best to email him instead of calling if you have questions.

          Keep in mind that in order to make the Tuesday shipping deadlines, items should be received by the Friday of the previous week. Containers should arrive and be cleared within 10 days.

          Seaview Building Solutions

          St John Relief

          3301 NW 22 Terr. Suite 300F

          Pompano Beach FL 33069

          Vincent Scapecchi 954-993-8251

          vince@seaviewbuildingsolutions.com

          These are some STJ homeowners (since 1983) that have a warehouse and staff near the Crowley Shipping port in Pennsauken NJ.
          They have offered to stage emergency supply’s and building materials and load containers to ship to STJ via PR – Cell # 1-609-780-1140. Not sure if they are still actively doing this so best to call.

          1 year ago

  44. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Maurice Lheureux

    Thank you again for your interest in the Virgin Islands National Park. The crews are still clearing the roads and beach access to these beaches then will conduct an safety and usage assessment of these beaches to determine when they will be accessible again. Stay tuned on https://www.nps.gov/viis/index.htm as sections of the Virgin Islands National Park begin to reopen, thanks…

    Lynette Y. Harper
    Deputy Superintendent Secretary

    Department of the Interior, National Park Service,
    V. I. National Park / Coral Reef National Monument
    1300 Cruz Bay Creek
    Cruz Bay, St. John, VI 00830

    1 year ago

  45. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Windy Thees

    My daughters and I would like to spend our Winter Holiday time down there to help in whatever manner possible. I have registered with VOAD but have not gotten any response in over a week. I’m not sure what their time table is on responses. But if you have any updates on how we can come and help clean and rebuild, please let me know

    1 year ago

    1. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
      Jennifer Knowles

      Hi Windy, we have an article coming out on November 6the that will address other options for volunteerism. Stay tuned!

      1 year ago

  46. Your People-Powered Guide to the Virgin Islands
    Anupama

    I am a psychologist and have worked as a consultant on STX for 18 years. How can I volunteer?

    1 year ago

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