Join VI EDCs to help the U.S. Virgin Islands recover and rebuild.
Your donation will be matched dollar for dollar up to $3 million.
In September 2017, the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) experienced unprecedented destruction when Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria, two Category 5 storms, hit the U.S. Territory within a span of less than two weeks. Reeling from the devastation of Hurricane Irma, which battered the islands on September 6 leaving many people homeless, residents endured a second strike by Hurricane Maria on September 19. Sadly, in addition to the destruction of homes, hospitals, schools and other critical infrastructure, five people lost their lives.
About the HelpUSVINow! Initiative.
Recognizing the massive humanitarian challenges facing the USVI as it recovers from the devastating impacts of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, several locally-headquartered Economic Development Corporations (EDCs) stepped up to aid the communities and support recovery.
Richard J Stephenson, a longtime St. Thomas resident, founder and chairman of the St. Thomas-based EDC, International Capital & Management Company, and chairman of the Stephenson Family Foundation, launched the HelpUSVINow! initiative to help the USVI recover from the ravages of both storms.
The Stephenson Family Foundation committed $5 million in relief funds, $2 million of which was immediately funded. The Foundation has pledged the additional $3 million as a matching fund to encourage donations to the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands (CFVI). All donations are tax deductible.
est. recovery cost
How your donation can help.
Your tax-deductible donation will help the people of the U.S. Virgin Islands recover and rebuild, providing for both immediate and long-term needs. Some of the greatest needs include:
Food, drinking water, medical supplies and other basic necessities are still in short supply as distribution systems have been disrupted and many grocery stores, pharmacies and hardware stores have been damaged or destroyed.
While assessments are still underway, it is estimated that over 50 percent of homes were either damaged or destroyed by hurricane-force winds, flooding and mudslides.
Personal items and household goods
When residents lost their homes, many of their belongings were also lost or destroyed including clothing, shoes, furniture, cooking appliances, and other household items.
The hospitals on St. Thomas and St. Croix as well the health clinic on St. John were severely damaged in the hurricanes, leaving the islands’ 100,000+ residents without sufficient access to healthcare.
Several of the Territory’s schools have been destroyed impacting children and families across the islands.
Lack of power
The hurricanes left more than 90 percent of homes without power. Complete restoration of power is expected to take months.
Your donation will help Virgin Islanders rebuild their lives, get back to work, return to school and begin the long journey towards recovery and restoration.
Help Spread the Word.
As time goes by and media coverage diminishes, it becomes even more critical to share the message that the USVI needs ongoing support and should not be forgotten! Please help spread the word among your friends and social media networks and visit the site again for updates on the USVI recovery.
The Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands (CFVI) is a long-standing, USVI nonprofit organization that manages a permanent collection of funds as well as essential programs and services to benefit the citizens of the USVI. For more than 25 years, CFVI has been catalyzing positive changes in the USVI Territory through initiatives committed to youth, learning, family support and the environment. With a professional staff and a volunteer Board of Directors composed of local community leaders, CFVI is a trusted advocate and supporter of programs in the USVI. In response to the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, CFVI is working to provide monies and support for hurricane relief efforts, including making grants to trusted community-serving nonprofit organizations, supporting the rebuilding of healthcare and educational infrastructure, improving the general welfare of families and children, and championing other charitable causes in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Foundation administers the Fund under the name HelpUSVINow!. For more information about CFVI, visit cfvi.net.
Checks can be mailed to the CFVI office: PO Box 11790 / St. Thomas, VI 00801 with the memo: USVINow!
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About the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Located in the Caribbean Sea, the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) is a territory of the United States with a diverse population of approximately 107,000 people. Residents are U.S. citizens and predominantly English-speaking. The U.S. Virgin Islands comprise three main islands, St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John as well as many neighboring islets. Despite vulnerability to hurricanes, the USVI is well-known for its white-sand beaches, duty-free shopping, historical landmarks and pristine national parks. The USVI relies heavily on tourism, hosting an average of 2.7 million visitors a year. Tourism accounts for approximately 80% of all jobs.
In 2017 the USVI celebrated the 100th anniversary of the sale and transfer of the islands from Denmark to the United States, a celebration which recognized the Territory’s rich history and culture as well as its unique American identity.