Cruise lines, both large and small, are stepping up to the plate and will donate millions of dollars to the Bahamas to help in the relief efforts after the devastation caused by Hurricane Dorian.
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line
First on the list is little Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, based in Palm Beach, Florida. It’s a small, two-ship fleet, and located a mere 86 miles from Grand Bahama Island and the port of Freeport. The cruise line has already sent one of their ships, Grand Celebration, to Freeport loaded with food, water and supplies. Medical teams, first responders and volunteers were brought in to help.
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line is in the process of offering free transportation from Florida to the Bahamas for Bahamians who were stranded in the US. Those in the Bahamas can also have free transportation to south Florida as long as they have proper documentation to enter the US. As of Saturday, the cruise line has brought over 1,100 evacuees to Florida.
Carnival Corporation said it will donate $1 million dollars through their Carnival Foundation which covers all of its nine brands. Owners Micky Arison and his wife Madeleine will also donate $1 million dollars from their Family Foundation.
Working with Tropical Shipping, Carnival has arranged to accept and send donated supplies from the public.
Donations can be sent to: Tropical Shipping, 1489 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Riviera Beach, FL 33404.
Royal Caribbean and Celebrity
Royal Caribbean will donate $1 million dollars and like other cruise lines, will send humanitarian aid and much needed supplies. In addition to things like drinking water, cleaning supplies and generators, Royal Caribbean will also be bringing prepared meals to Freeport. Their smaller Empress of the Seas has already made a much-needed food delivery.
This really got to me. On Sept 6, Celebrity Equinox veered off its intended Caribbean itinerary and instead set sail for Freeport. While the kitchen crew worked overtime to prepare over 10,000 sandwiches to bring ashore, passengers pitched in to help package the meals. Guests donated clothing. 1200 pounds of chicken and over 10,000 water bottles were also delivered using local boats and the ship’s tenders. In the coming weeks, Celebrity will continue to bring relief to Freeport. This will include medical supplies, clothing, lawn chairs for sleeping on and bedding and towels.
READ NEXT: What to know if you plan to cruise during hurricane season
Disney Cruise Line
Disney stated they will donate over $1 million dollars to relief agencies. In addition, Disney has committed to sending building supplies and food.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Another $1 million dollars in relief aid will come from Norwegian Cruise Line. One of their largest ships, Norwegian Breakaway has already brought relief supplies to the Bahamas.
MSC Cruises, scheduled to open a new marine park destination in the Bahamas later this year, will use their cargo ships to bring rebuilding supplies and aid to the Bahamas.
All the cruise lines have stated that they plan to repair and reopen their island beach destinations as soon as possible.
How you can donate to Hurricane Dorian relief
- The Bahamas Disaster Relief Fund, set up by the Bahamian government, is accepting wire transfers. The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency has posted instructions here.
- The American Red Cross is accepting donations by phone at 800-435-7669 or online here.
- The Salvation Army is accepting money for relief efforts in both the Bahamas and the United States here.
- Mercy Corps has sent a field team that’s meeting with emergency managers and other organizations to coordinate response efforts. The organization is accepting money here.
- The Grand Bahama Port Authority has established the Grand Bahama Disaster Relief Foundation to provide relief to that island. It’s accepting donations and supplies.
- YachtAid Global, which coordinates yacht operators in providing humanitarian aid and disaster response, is accepting money to purchase supplies including food, hygiene kits, medicine and tarps.
- Global Giving, a global crowdfunding platform, has set up the Hurricane Dorian Relief Fund to help local organizations purchase food, water and medicine.
- World Central Kitchen has sent teams to provide food on Grand Bahama and the Abacos. The organization, founded by chef José Andrés, is accepting money here.
- The National Association of the Bahamas, based in Miami and working with the Bahamas consul general there, has set up a Hurricane Relief Fund.