Sanitation Service Co. Ltd. General Manager Lou Carroll and Long Island Association Executive Treasurer, Marlene Knowles recently donated funds to the Ragged Island Cultural Heritage Association (RICHA) for the redevelopment of the Southern Bahamas jewel that was ravaged by Hurricane Irma last month.
Ascribing to the adage, “A friend in need is a friend indeed,” both Carroll and Knowles revealed that while they are saddened by the state Ragged Island is currently in following the damages sustained by the Category 5 storm, on the other hand, it is a pleasure to render assistance to the RICHA to move the recovery process along.
Elkenny Lockhart, RICHA G.B.I. Chapter President expressed appreciation to both Sanitation Services Co. Ltd. and the Long Island Association for not hesitating to come to the aid of the families on Ragged Island.
Flanked by members of RICHA, Lockhart smiled as Carroll revealed why it was so important to give back.
“Sanitation Services Co. Ltd did its best to assist the Long Island Association in their time of need when Hurricane Joaquin left destruction in its wake in 2015.
“We believe in giving back to the community and providing assistance to those who are in need of help, hence prior to, and in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew last year, we were elated to ship building materials and supplies to the islands again that were left completely ravaged by the storm.
“All the islands of The Bahamas are intricately connected and while Sanitation Services Co. Ltd might not be able to help every one of the isles within our sunny clime that had been negatively impacted, we are doing our best to assist as many as we can in the best ways we are so able,” said Carroll.
“Today we are happy to make a substantial donation to RICHA G.B.I. President Lockhart. Sadly, this time around, Ragged Island was hardest hit by Hurricane Irma leaving it on the cusp of being uninhabitable.
“Indeed it is vital that Corporate Bahamas and civic organizations across the length and breadth of the nation come together and help those in need, as again we are all one; one people and one nation.
“We must demonstrate a spirit of camaraderie especially as our brothers and sisters try to rebuild their lives, besides I know firsthand what a natural disaster such as Joaquin, Matthew and Irma can do to the emotional psyche alone of a person,” Carroll noted.
“I know how Hurricane Joaquin affected my family and I on Long Island, many not only lost their possessions but they also lost time from work or their means of income without proper, genuine help, they begin to lose heart as everything as they knew it is gone.
“It is hard and exhaustive to bring oneself back to a state of normalcy in such cases so an injection of cash, materials, volunteered expertise and time always helps and ignites a sense of hope that better days are ahead.
“All anyone has to do is take a look at the island nations in the southern Caribbean to understand exactly that besides if they too do not receive outside help and assistance communities and countries could be lost and that would be a travesty,” declared Carroll.
Overwhelmed by the display of genuine love and support being given to RICHA in the recovery, restoration and redevelopment process, Lockhart graciously accepted a hug from Knowles, who took a moment to reflect on the kindness shown to Long Island by Ragged Island descendants during their time of turmoil and confusion in the aftermath of Hurricane Joaquin two years ago.
Knowles shared, “Certainly today the Long Island Association is happy to give a donation to RICHA, especially as in the aftermath of Hurricane Joaquin two years ago, Mr. Lockhart and the members of the association came to the aid of Long Island.
“Hurricane Joaquin caused massive damage to Long Island and the assistance provided by RICHA was welcomed and truly appreciated.
“Not only did RICHA provide aid to Long Island but other Family Islands that were hard-hit by Hurricane Joaquin and we believe in being kind one to another as well as being our brother’s keeper, so of course we are delighted to lend a helping hand and our prayer is that Ragged Island will receive the help necessary to rebuild and be greater than it was before Hurricane Irma unleashed her blow there,” said Knowles.
Describing the donations made by both Sanitation Services Co. Ltd. and the Long Island Association as “simply stupendous,” Lockhart thanked Carroll and Knowles for the generosity shown by both organizations they each represent.
He noted that they are not only showing a spirit of friendship, kinship and family but of simple human kindness.
“As Ragged Island descendants we are truly appreciative of all the contributions being made by Sanitation Services Co. Ltd. and the Long Island Association in this our time of need.
“Also RICHA extends gratitude for other organizations and individuals for their continued support as the redevelopment process for Ragged Island is going to take time and it must be well devised.
“Of course, we all are one and providing help whenever you can in whatever manner one can will help to move the process along and again we are grateful to all.
“For those wishing to make a donation and to those who already have, be it to the Ragged Island Cultural Heritage Association (RICHA) Bank account at Royal Bank, the RICHA Go Fund Me page we say thank you.
“We want to assure all that everything is above board and those accounts are in the aforementioned names and not in any particularly person’s name; we will be able to show receipts for everything that is being done to assist with the rebuilding process of Ragged Island and we believe in honesty and transparency.
“Any donors who may have questions can come and check to make sure that the funds, materials and aid given is properly documented and going directly to the cause of recovery, restoration and the rebuilding of Ragged Island.
“RICHA Grand Bahama thankfully received all the contributions and guarantees that everyone, no matter how big or small,would be faithfully applied.
“Thank you, thank you, thank you to one and all,” declared Lockhart.