Short-term Responses

USVI Response

Hurricane Irma made landfall in the United States Virgin Islands (USVI) on September 6, 2017 as a Category 5 hurricane. On September 16, ten days later, the Virgin Islands were struck by Hurricane Maria, another Category 5 hurricane. St Thomas, home to 51,642 individuals prior to the storms, has a current total of over 18,200 households who have registered for assistance with FEMA (the highest of the three islands). BDM has been supporting the recovery in the USVI through the Disaster Recovery Support Initiative (DRSI) program. There, our staff have been walking with and mentoring the St. Thomas Recovery Team (STRT) as they are planning their recovery. STRT is now ready to welcome volunteers and BDM has three 2-week time periods in 2018 reserved for BDM volunteers to work in the USVI on St. Thomas. Those weeks are:
June 17-30, September 9-22, December 2-15 (FULL), and Jan 6-19, 2019.

There are 12 spots open each of the 2-week periods for volunteers from all districts on a first come basis. Housing, job site transportation, tools and meals will be provided during these 2-week time periods. Volunteer must be able to work in warm climates and some of the work during the June trip will likely include mucking and gutting homes.

Brethren Disaster Ministries can offer partial reimbursement of airfare for BDM volunteers during these weeks when:

  • Volunteers are unable to fund travel to USVI on their own
  • Their Local District does not provide travel coverage/reimbursement (Check with your District Disaster Coordinator)
  • Travel is taken by coach (and purchased 21 days in advance if possible as the least expensive form of travel)
If the above are true, then the BDM National office can reimburse 25% of airfare for serving 5-7 work days and 50% of airfare for working 9-14. For reimbursement, volunteers must submit a signed Volunteer Expense Statement to BDM upon their return and include all flight receipts. To sign up for these opportunities, please contact your District Disaster Coordinator (DDC).

USVI Poster

Other response information:

If you would like to be added to a list to get information on future responses in Puerto Rico please contact Terry Goodger at tgoodger@brethren.org or 410-635-8730.

There are still openings for week-long trips to current BDM sites in the meantime. See the open schedule here.