"Barbudaful" once again

On September 6th, 2017 the island of Barbuda was devastated by Hurricane Irma - the strongest hurricane ever recorded in Caribbean waters.


The entire population was displaced after the storm damaged nearly every building on the island; many were completely destroyed.  The schools were leveled, roofs were torn from homes, vehicles overturned, debris scattered, and water sources contaminated.  


Most of the 1800 residents of Barbuda are currently being housed on the sister island of Antigua, and waiting to go home.  The government of Antigua and Barbuda are evaluating current conditions, to prioritize the clean up and construction.  However, a rebuild will take months to years, and hundreds of millions of dollars to accomplish.


The Barbuda Ecological Research Group has been travelling to Barbuda since 2010.  In this time, we have been fortunate to study different aspects of the island’s biodiversity and unique ecosystems - many of which are now seriously damaged.  We have also forged strong ties with many Barbudan families.  We rent housing and vehicles from them, work with them to collect data, and also spend time with them socially.  They are both our colleagues, and our friends.  We are heartbroken about the devastation they have experienced.

As educators from colleges and non-profit organizations, we hope to be a positive force in the island’s restoration by focusing on the schools and families.  Supporting the school rebuild, and allowing kids to return to their learning environment will bring back a sense of routine and normalcy to island life. It is but one step on their long road.  Our goal is to raise money for the purchase of school supplies, books, and other necessities. We also plan to contribute directly to families to purchase household goods, personal items, clothing, and school uniforms.  The specific items purchased will be determined in conjunction with the schools and families, once the rebuild is underway.
We plan to purchase some items in the U.S. and travel with them to Barbuda, while other items will be sourced from down there and shipped to the island.  From our fundraising, 100% of money withdrawn will be used to make purchases for Barbudans, and be transparently accounted for via GoFundMe updates to our generous donors.


These children are the future of Barbuda. Their education will be key to their personal success, as well as to the protection and preservation of the island’s natural resources.

The Barbudan spirit is a strong one.  This community is resilient, and they are desperate to rebuild their homes, their schools, and their lives.  Please help us bring back this wonderful community, and make their transition home as comfortable and as supported as possible.


No donation is too small! 

With sincere gratitude,

The Barbuda Ecological Research Group

Wendy McFarlane (1), Nancy Todd (1), Maxine Montello (2), and Melissa LaCroce (3)


(1) Manhattanville College, Purchase, NY
(2) Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation, Riverhead, NY
(3) University of North Carolina, Wilmington, NC
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  • Brett Berry 
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  • Conny Budarick 
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  • Karen Rogers 
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Organizer

Barbuda Ecological Research Group 
Organizer
Warren, CT
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