Latitude 18 Employees Hurricane Irma Relief Fund
On September 6th, 2017 Hurricane Irma swept over the British Virgin Islands with sustained winds of 185 mph. The Latitude 18 store at Soper's Hole, West End Tortola was completely destroyed, our Road Town store sustained massive damage. The re opening of our stores is at least a year away. The photo you see on GoFundMe solicitation page is the before Irma photo. Above is what we look like after Irma. We're the pile of wood on the far right.
I am one of the owners of Latitude 18 and I have lived in the BVI for over 35 years Latitude 18 has been in business for 20 years in the BVI and if you have ever visited Tortola I'm sure you have at least stepped into one of our stores and been greeted by one our wonderful staff members. Latitude 18 was able to suceed because of the hard work and dedication of our employees but the consequences of the storms has been been devastating to our staff. Our 10 employees, who are all women, have not only lost their only source of income, working at Latitude 18, but have also lost their houses, roofs, electricity, running water, appliances, clothing, cars, the list goes on and on. Because such a large percentage of businesses were destroyed the chances of our staff finding new employment are slim to none. These are the people that desperately need assistance with rebuilding their own and their children's and families' lives.
The closest estimate that we can come up with is that it will take a minimum of $10,000 per staff member for them to be able to support their families and to help them rebuild their life during the next 12 months. The money will help fund their lost wages, food, shelter, clothing, transportation and medical expenses. All of the donations collected will be disbursed only to the employees of Latitude 18. Once we have sufficient donations I will start making weekly withdrawals from the fund and will deposit the funds in our account and from there we will be able to make direct deposits to our staff's bank accounts to help cover their living expenses and rebuilding costs.
Our business, Latitude 18, will not take even $1.00 from the donated funds. It will all go to our staff.
For a closer look at what happened in the BVI you can check out the following 2 pages:
BVI Abroad - https://www.facebook.com/groups/1922822811318744/
BVI Community Board - https://www.facebook.com/groups/178954908878855/
As the situation in the BVI is critical the owners and staff of Latitude 18 would like to thank you in advance for your kind contribution to our Latitude 18 Employees Hurricane Irma Relief Fund. Remember that no donation is too small.
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