I Sally Bibby am appealing for assistance for the recovery of my British Virgin Island family home and livelihood that has been destroyed by the devastating impacts of the two unprecedented Category 5 hurricanes – Irma and Maria.
My husband Richard grew up on the main BVI island of Tortola, residing there for over 50yrs. As a young boy he helped his mother as she carved her own slice of paradise from the rugged mountainside, building their family home together. Unbelievably the home we lovingly built and maintained has been reduced to a shell, losing the roof, windows and doors. Our lifetime of possessions lie shattered and scattered among an endless debris of demolished building materials. The task is almost overwhelmingly daunting, but with a mother, grandmother and great grandmother all buried on the land we are determined to rebuild what we can.
As for our family business, Samarkand Jewellers, the beautiful building we had rented and treasured on Main Street survived the direct beatings of Irma. Tragically, within hours, looters forced entry to the shop, workshop and safe, vandalising everything and stealing all the stock and valuables that we had built up over 46 years of hand-crafted family trade. With nothing but the shell of a home and shop, our family business Samarkand has now been forced to close its doors. We will maintain our handcrafted jewellery business purely online until we can recover (www.facebook.com/samakandjewellers ).
On behalf of myself and my family I want to say thank you for all the fabulous support the BVI community and its global visitors have given us over the years. We know there are thousands of loyal visitors who cherish their memories of BVI with the help of our original designs. It’s been our pleasure to serve you.
Tragically our house and business were not insured for these unprecedented circumstances. With members of my family still residing in this virtual disaster zone, I would truly appreciate any donation (however small) that will help us rebuild our BVI home and hopefully, over time, the family’s craft business.
Our thoughts go out to all those devastated by this natural disaster and we encourage anyone able to help others affected to do so too. Most of the BVI infrastructure, businesses and homes, including those of our friends and neighbours, have also suffered devastating irreparable losses to their homes and workplaces.
- Mary lu Roszko
- Robert Chamberlain
- Robert Walther
- Laura Forbes
- Linda Hadley
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