Hurricane Dorian was a category 5 hurricane and one of the most intense storms to hit the Bahamas. It is one of the greatest natural disasters to occur in United States history. Which caused nearly 7.5 billion US dollars in damage. Hurricane Dorian formed on August 24, 2019 and Dissapated September 10,2019.
Five Fast Facts about the Bahamas:
*The Bahamas is actually a collection of more than 700 islands, of which only 30 percent are inhabited. It lies 50 miles off the east coast of Florida. Nassau, home to more than 250,000 people, is the capital and largest city.
* The Arawak Indians were the first inhabitants of the Bahamas. Columbus's first encounter with the New World was on Oct. 12, 1492, when he landed on the Bahamian island of San Salvador. The British first built settlements on the islands in the 17th century. In the early 18th century, the Bahamas were a favorite pirate haunt.
* According to the Bahamas exports, imports, and trade partners, the country's biggest exports are petroleum and Rock Lobster.
*The country is still encouraging tourist to visit because most of the islands are still open, according to the Washington Post, citing comments from Thomas Thompson, deputy director general of the tourism ministry. "When people say Bahamas has been devastated, it gives the wrong impression," Thompson said.
*English is the official
language and the country celebrates its Independence Day on July
University students aid those impacted by Hurricane Dorian
Allen Chapel Relief Effort 9/12/2019
Daytona Beach residents, led by area clergy and members of several Panhellenic organizations, came together in the weeks following Hurricane Dorian to gather supplies for the people of the Bahamas.
Student volunteers from Bethune-Cookman University were on hand recently at Allen Chapel A.M.E. Church to help load a truck with clothes and other supplies bound for Miami.
Meanwhile, the university has set up boxes around campus for people wishing to donate goods. Hurricane Dorian's fierce winds and rains leveled parts of the several island in the Bahamas, including Abaco and Marsh Island. While the capital city of Nassau was largely spared a direct hit, residents still were impacted.
A volunteer heads out the door with a box loaded with supplies for hurricane victims.
The Rev. Nathan Mugala, pastor at Allen Chapel AME Church, thanks the crowd for its support.
Area media showed up to record the event at Allen Chapel AME.
Volunteers from various campus organizations were a part of the effort.
Volunteers pose for a photo after the truck was loaded and ready to go.
Rev. Nathan Mugala and Daytona Beach City Commissioner Quanita May,(blue dress), pose with the volunteers.
Don Freeman, of Allen Chapel, volunteered to drive the truck with the donations to Miami.
The Voice staff was able to speak to several Bahamians, including students on campus, to find out how they and their families held up.
By Jaylen Stanford, Ashonti Dean and Victor Minikwu
Braidon Campbell is from Freeport Bahamas. Campbell was reluctant to speak about the impact on his family. He did say that they had been forced to live without power for a week. The first floor of the family home, according to Campbell. At the time of his interview, he said, his family had spent time in a shelter and they do not like it there. They are hoping, he said, to come to the United States. Meanwhile, he said that his aunt and grandparents were able to evacuate to Miami, Florida.
"I just want to see my family and make sure they are good," Campbell said.
Aja Jones resides in Nassau but attended high school in Tampa. Jones said her family's home suffered damage from water that came up knee high, basically ruining anything that was floor level including electrical sockets and shoes. The family's cars also were damaged, she said.
Jones said the electricity has been on and off throughout the day-- between 10 in the morning till 5 p.m. It is then shut down at 11 p.m. until 3 a.m. the next day.
She criticized the government, adding she does not thing they have been fair in distributing resources. "They pick people who they felt deserved to eat, pick where to lay at, even including clothing," she said.
Despite her criticism, she said she still has hope that the prime minister will put all the donations to good use.
Meanwhile, Brandon Symonette, a junior music major, also has family in Nassau.
Symonette said his mother and three older brothers were there at the time during the hurricane.
Fortunately, he said, the areas they were in during the storm were not heavily impacted, just minor flooding and heavy winds. He said that his family didn't evacuate. In fact, he said, their houses are in stable condition and everyone he contacted so far is still alive and well.
The official death toll stood at 50 at one point but was expected to rise, according to a report at the Guardian.com. More than 76,000 people were displaced and at least 1,300 were still unaccounted for in the most recent report. "The financial cost of the damage caused by Dorian is not clear, but it will be in the billions of dollars. The Bahamas cannot be expected to foot this bill alone," said U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres in a prepared statement.
Hampton offers aid to students displaced by Hurricane Dorian
Hampton University in Virginia will allow Bahamian students the option of staying at Hampton University for regular tuition and fees after the conclusion of the fall semester.
The university announced recently that it made an agreement with the University of the Bahamas to allow displaced students to attend classes at Hampton for free in fall 2019.
"I think this agreement is something that can be helpful to a great number of students and families, and is part of something I've tried to do my entire career - helping people to achieve and meet their goals," Hampton University President Dr. William R. Harvey said in a statement released by the university.
Reporting by Jabari Atiim
Hurricane Dorian forced students to leave campus for a week.
They found comfort in family, food, and friends while waiting for the all-clear.
Here are some of their stories.
Kemonte Harris: First Virginia, then home to D.C.
"The tempest did practically no harm at all --- making me spend over $300 for a direct flight from Orlando to Norfolk, Virginia. I originally went to Norfolk State University, where my sibling is a student and got the chance to experience the campus life there.
"I, likewise, had the chance to walk the boardwalk in Virginia Beach since I had never been. In addition, I got the chance to go out on the town to shop at the shopping center. I spent one day there and the next day we drove three hours back home to Washington, D.C.
"Once I was in the district on Saturday I invested the rest of my energy into my child. The entire time I had him I went out to the National Zoo but any other day it was too hot so I stayed in and spent time with him."
Ashanti Patterson: Rescued by Netflix
"During the hurricane I stayed in Daytona (Beach) at my apartment the whole week.
"I laid in my bed all week and watched the "Green Arrow" on Netflix. My friends stayed over as well. So, we played Uno, had fun and cooked particularly every day. (We) made rice, chicken, shrimp (even though I don't eat shrimp), pork chops, string beans, corn and mashed potatoes. All on different days, of course.
"Mainly I sat in the house the whole time. I went outside to feel the wind breezing. Or, just went outside to get some fresh air.
"My hurricane break was a normal day for me. Lying in bed, watching Netflix and eating. A typical day for me."
Paris Huckaby: Fled to Connecticut
"I survived Hurricane Dorian by going back home to New Haven, Connecticut, and staying safe with my family.
"During the break my family had a big cookout that's held annually the day before Labor Day and I had so much fun reconnecting back with family members I haven't seen in a while since I've been in college.
"We had a lot of food for the cookout, too. It wasn't just the regular hot dog and hamburger type of cookout. There was mac and cheese, fried fish, chicken and potato salad, among other things. The options of food were endless.
"The cookout is so big in my community that even the runner-up for mayor for my city was there.
"This break was longer than expected, so I really didn't have much planned and most of my friends go to college where they didn't have to evacuate for a hurricane, so I wasn't able to hang out with them while I was home. I was bored (the) majority of the time over the break--just eating food and catching up with YouTube videos.
"Even though my break was boring, I was happy to be with my mom again since I missed her a lot and was a little homesick. She took me out to Red Lobster over the break and brought along my aunt so we could get the endless shrimp deal that they have going on right now. We ordered about three rounds of shrimp for only $15.99! They had different flavors such as coconut shrimp, honey sriracha shrimp, scampi shrimp, fried shrimp and the like. It was very tasty and can get you full quick."
Jordan Ezell: Hurricane party in Tampa
"Hurricane Dorian was an experience for many different students on the Bethune - Cookman campus -- student athletes were stuck in their event states, some fled home or anywhere that felt safe.
"I chose to be with my friends and go to Tampa, Florida with my roommate and stay with her sister at The University of South Florida.
"Our experience was an unexpected experience that I will remember throughout my college life. Our week off had one good party at the beginning, being stuck in an apartment for a few days because of bad weather, and few homework attempts.
"Traveling to Tampa felt like I was in a flea of ants to an ant hill. There was just too much going on! There were countless individuals going in many different directions all with the same urgency to protect themselves from the unknown effects around them. That day I learned something new. I learned the true visual of traffic. There is no traffic greater than traffic in a flee to safety. Despite the ride there being rough, it got better once we got there to her sister's apartment.
"We went to one of the biggest parties of the year at The University of South Florida. We went to a party by the name of FreakNic! It was super fun time. The party was imitating the '90s. The party was filled with some of the world's best old school music and (guests) matched the '90s right down to the attire. People had on durags, spandex, the big glasses and more.
"Now, that was a good memory with friends that I will remember. I knew that the party would be hard to top but it surely was not topped at all.
"The rest of the week was diminished by Hurricane Dorian. We were stuck in the apartment was snacks and homework when the Wi-Fi was not affected by the storm. We did partake in some games, studying, and sleep but there was not much after that. We stayed optimistic but there was only so much to do.
"At the end of the trip, we were at least happy that we had one good memory about Hurricane Dorian. We can at least say we had a hurricane party."
Camryn N. Franklin-Hill: Boring weekend at home
"Hurricane Dorian made it to where I had to go home for the weekend.
"The Friday before leaving, I spent the day with my friends J, Chris and Victoria at J's apartment. For the most part, the four of us watched movies and we ate pizza together, and then I had to catch my bus back to Atlanta.
"When I go back to Atlanta, my mom was the one who picked me up and before I knew it I was back home in Roswell along with my two sisters-- Camille and Caylen. For the most part, we didn't really do anything. My little sister still had school as well as volleyball practice and games she had to go to, and my older sister and mom had to work most of the time.
"However, we did watch the Cookman football game on ESPN, which was pretty cool cause I saw a few of my friends on TV. And, we did end up beating Jackson State University. Not only that, me and my sisters did end up having one of our famous Uno games. Of course, my little sister lost and accused everyone of cheating, even though she's really just a bad Uno player.
"For most of my weekend, I spent my time doing my homework because even though there was a hurricane going on, my work still needed to be done before I got back to school.
"When Saturday came, I spent a little bit of time with my older sister and my mom before it was time for me to leave. Even though it was a pretty boring weekend, I was still a little sad I had to leave my family behind.
"But, there's only two more months until Thanksgiving Break, so I think I'll be okay until then."
Thea Shaw: Saved by her teammate
"When the hurricane first started I didn't know where to go.
"I ended up going to my teammate Valencia's house for the storm. It was really nice of her being as though we haven't known each other for that long. Her family are nice people for allowing me to stay in their home.
"She is from Lakeland Florida. When I was there it was pretty cool. I mostly just stayed in bed. We went to a football game with her and her cousin. While I was there I bought a lot of Biggie bags from Wendy's. I also met different people with different personalities. It was a fun experience because I met so many wonderful people.
"There were a lot of children where I was staying. That made me think of having my own child one day. There was one child named Asher that first got on my nerves because he would yell every morning and wake me up. All he ever did was yell every day and it started to get really aggravating.
"But, once I got to know the baby a little bit I learned that he was actually a sweetheart. He also had a sister who was a lot calmer than him.
"We live in a small world because I was soon to learn that the young man that was in the house knew my girlfriend. They went to school together and she was section leader.
"What really disgusted me about the storm was that there were so many people who didn't allow me to stay with them. I'm a college student who lives 12 hours away from home and you don't open up your door. It baffles me that there are actually people like that out here.
"I try not to think about it much because they will deal with their Karma. Most people think they have another mouth to feed when in actuality they're just blessing someone and then God can bless them but everyone out here is so cold hearted and selfish so they can't see past the tip of their nose.
"Overall, I had an amazing experience. I am very thankful to my teammate because she helped me avoid having to pay $400 to go back home, which would have been unnecessary just to go home for one week."
Elijah Dyous: Stayed with family in Orlando
"During Hurricane Dorian I traveled to Atlanta, Georgia, with the Marching Wildcats Band. We performed at Dutchtown High school in Georgia and for a MEAC/SWAC football game. The game was Bethune-Cookman vs. Jackson State on Sunday at 3 p.m. We were supposed to come back Sunday after the football game but due to storm predictions we stayed.
"Monday, we relaxed and went to a mall, then made a tough choice to leave at 3 a.m. on Tuesday, heading to Daytona (Beach) trying to beat Hurricane Dorian. We got back to town around 2 p.m. and found few stores were open. I got lucky and found a Dollar General store open until 4 p.m. so I was able to get food for the hurricane. For safety, I drove to Orlando to stay at my freshman brother's house because predictions said the hurricane would not hit Orlando."
Loron Robles: Rescued by my aunts
"Bethune-Cookman University announced Aug. 29 that it would be closing and canceling all classes effective the following day due to the impending storm on its way to the Florida coast sometime next week.
"So, the next day students evacuated going home to their families and friends to shelter away from the storm. Luckily for me, someone who is not from Florida, I had a place to stay during the storm thanks to my aunts living here in Florida. Later that day, my aunt picked me up from school to drop me off at her house until she returned home from work. On Sunday my aunt, cousin and I left Daytona Beach to go to another aunt's house in Gainesville because of reports that the storm would hit the Volusia County coast.
"So, we stayed at my aunt's house in Gainesville. When we got there, my grandmother and aunt greeted us when we arrived. We set up the air mattress to sleep on while we stayed there. During the time I spent in Gainesville, I was relaxing, reading and doing my resume.
"This vacation also allowed me to spend more time with my family. I also used it to watch the news every day to gain information on what's going on with the hurricane and when it was going to hit Florida. Thankfully the hurricane did not do any damage to the state. So, I was glad that I was able to go back to Daytona (Beach) with my aunt and cousin and wait at their house until school started."
Elijah Morris: Rescued by a friend
"My hurricane break started with me getting kicked out of campus with no more than a day to figure out where I was going to go because I could not return home in such short notice.
"My girlfriend and I were in the same predicament so we were freaking out a bit.
"Fortunately, we had a friend who lived near the school who offered us shelter for the duration of the storms. So, I packed lightly and informed my girlfriend to do the same and we settled there. We bought food, water and boarded up the windows so that should the storm get bad we would have an extra precaution. While we waited for the storm that never came, my friend, his roommate, my girlfriend and I played games, cooked, had controversial discussions and just had a good time.
"And that's how it was until we were able to return to campus."
Chloe Wilmore: Home with family
"During the time we were off from the hurricane, I spent a few days in Atlanta, Georgia as I am in the band. We performed for halftime during the MEAC/SWAC Challenge game. I saw many family and friends that came to watch us perform. As much as I do not enjoy being in Georgia, I had fun.
"I usually feel uncomfortable just being in Georgia but surprising I enjoyed myself besides having a cold. We were only in Atlanta from Saturday until early Tuesday morning. After we arrived on campus and unloaded the buses, I went to my dorm room grabbed my things and left for home. I was home almost the whole time while we were off.
"Of course, my mother made me do chores and run a few errands with her. I slept and played on my PS4 most of the time. My sister, who was in Atlanta as well, came back and spent some time with the family. We all went out to eat and discussed the trip. That is all I really did through the short hurricane break we had. I don't do much when I'm home. I go out from time to time, but I am what they call a 'homebody' person.
"The little vacation we had was fine, but I wish it was a tad bit longer. I'm sure many students would love a longer break. The longer the vacation, the more I can sleep."
Nadirah Royer: Attended a conference
"Though the absence of school seemed like a pleasant time for me to have off, it was not.
I was bored and unmotivated to do anything, but make it to the end of the week. I knew at the end of this unexpected break I would be looking forward to an opportunity that would help me in the long run. That opportunity was a networking conference in Chicago.
"On Friday, Sept. 6, I traveled to Chicago, Illinois, to be a part of an all-expense paid conference known as Competitive Advantage. This program is a unique experience for minority students who are passionate about their collegiate and professional career. It is targeted to help sophomores, juniors and seniors with the transition to graduate school, self-awareness, and professional development.
"During this conference, I was able to meet some leaders and recruiters from multi-billion-dollar companies such as Liberty Mutual, The Hershey Company, General Mills, and Deloitte. I also had the amazing opportunity of being able to have a sit-down interview with the associate director and head of category leadership at Kraft/Heinz. That discussion enabled me to think more clearly about my academic goals that I should focus on for this school year and off-campus organizations I should partner with so that I can position myself to be able to qualify for internship and job opportunities in the future.
"The conference also had sessions that were hosted by Gurus to help us with branding ourselves, marketability, the development of academic relationships, and finding the leader within.
"Throughout all the workshops and sessions, I learned so much more about myself and what I was capable of. It helped me realize that I needed to become more focused on what I wanted for myself in the future and to be able to appreciate all of my accomplishments in general.
"Even though I was upset about having to be home for a week when I was supposed to be in school I wouldn't have traded this weekend for any other. I thoroughly appreciated the chance I was given by Competitive Advantage to attend this event. In the future, I want to be able to share opportunities like these with my peers because it gives you the experience that you need to be able to go into an uncomfortable situation and make the most out of it.
Tatyana Stevenson: A new experience
"During the week of the hurricane, I was very frantic because where I'm from (Norfolk, Virginia) we don't really experience hurricanes. So, this was my first time actually being in a natural disaster situation.
"For the hurricane, I stayed at my aunt's house in Orlando because I did not have enough time to make plans to go home since we were rushed off of campus. During that whole week I was a little on edge because the reports for the hurricane kept changing and I was unsure if it was going to hit the city I was in.
"Eventually, I just assumed that the hurricane was not going to hit Orlando so I started enjoying my mini vacation. The weekend of the evacuation I attended a birthday dinner for one of my friends at Kobe's, a hibachi restaurant.
"The following week I spent a lot of time relaxing and trying to catch up on some of my homework assignments. Throughout the week, I did some shopping at the mall, met up with friends, spent time with my family, went to the movies and various other activities.
"I really enjoyed myself during the hurricane evacuation. I needed the break because the amount of school work I had due had me stressed out already and it's only the beginning.
"All in all, during the week of the hurricane I had a lot of free time, which I enjoyed, and it allowed me to get back on track with my academics."