As many of you know, Hurricane Irma ravaged its way across the island of St Maarten / St Martin on Wednesday September 6th, 2017, leaving in its wake a path of destruction, devastation and homelessness. This is the strongest storm ever to have struck the island, and over 95% of the island's structures were destroyed. Through our two businesses, Bamboo and Sky Beach, our family employs a staff of 60 from 14 different countries, who together add up to an extended family of over 200 impacted people, all of whom have been displaced. Most have lost their homes, their clothing, their food, their books, even their photos. Many have been evacuated to other locations and they are now scattered, jobless, and with no means to earn an income. All of them have families who need food, shelter, clothing, medication and supplies. Our staff is our family! And if you've been to the island, chances are good they are your family too. So many of you have dined at Bamboo. You've relaxed on the rooftop at Sky Beach. No doubt you were served by one of our warm staff members... you savored a meal prepared by one of our great cooks... or perhaps you've sipped a cocktail prepared by one of our wonderful bartenders.
Many of you have read of the heroic save of a number of them by Jim Goldman, who flew to the island two days after the storm hit to bring in building supplies and to evacuate as many as he could get off the island. Links to the media coverage of this are below.
We are doing as much as we can for our Sint Maarten/St Martin family, but we ourselves are a small business and we have also suffered great loss, so our own funds are limited.
We will rebuild (!!), and we will provide jobs again for this wonderful family... but until then, we are appealing to those of you who love this little island of paradise to find room in your heart to donate funds to help them get through this terrible period.
Please know that 100% of these funds will go to our staff and their families... who are sorely in need of food, medicine, supplies, clothing, etc. and who need to begin to rebuild their lives. The French and Dutch governments have been unable to provide direct financial assistance, so we are doing whatever we can to help. Again, this fund is only for our staff and their families. It has nothing to do with our businesses, which we ourselves will rebuild using our own funds.
Lastly... while any donation is a gesture of love and compassion, to us anyone who donates to this fund is an honorary member of our family. Should your travels bring you back to our island paradise down the road - and we truly hope they do!! - please identify yourself to a staff member. We want to know who you are, so we can express our extreme gratitude for your compassionate generosity shown today.
With gratitude and love,
Jimmy, Sophie, Vaughn, Jodi & Dylan
PS - here's a link to our website - we're legit, and those smiling faces belong to real people, our extended family, who along with their families are suffering great loss.
PPS - Should you have any questions or wish to speak to Jimmy directly, please call him at [phone redacted] or email him at [email redacted].
Here are links to the media coverage of Jimmy's heroic act:
Here are some pics of our Bamboo and Sky Beach staff during happier times:
And here are some interior pics of Bamboo (and staff) before Irma ...
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