By Esther Durand, BVI News Staff
Eight Tortola families who were unable to replace their hurricane-destroyed roofs can now breathe a sigh of relief.
Local vulnerable families such as single-parent households, struggling families, the elderly were gifted with brand new roofs under the Adopt A Roof (AAR) initiative.
The AAR is a non-profit organisation which aims to replace roofs in the territory through donors and volunteers.
Manager and Chef at Brandywine Restaurant, Regis Bourdon established the group last year following the two category-five hurricanes.
Bourdon, who is the AAR’s president, told BVI News the initiative specifically begun after the destruction of his East End-based restaurant.
He said with a stocked freezer of food, he decided to prepare meals for children in that community.
That programme ran from September to February and a total of 14,000 meals were distributed free of cost.
Bourdon said, during that period, he was touched by the glaring signs of families living without roofs, sufficient money, or insurance.
“One day we ended up crossing paths with this lady. She was at home and she had no roof and no other place to stay. She was an elderly woman and sleeping between two chairs on a door. And it just broke my heart and I said this cannot be. That could be my mom or my grandmother … I was upset.”
Bourdon then decided to engage his friends for roofing materials and manpower.
He, along with a team of volunteers was able to assist the lady in question, along with several others.
AAR’s current position
The non-profit organisation has installed eight roofs and two more are currently under construction.
Bourdon said with the help of the public, they are seeking to assist more persons who are still roofless almost a year after the catastrophic weather events of 2017.
The charitable organisation now has $180,000 and are assessing four roofs which cost on average $40,000, each.
Bourdon said the AAR continues to work hand in hand with government agencies such as Department for Disaster Management to identify vulnerable people with the greatest need.
Persons can donate through several avenues. These include Adopt A Roof’s local Facebook page, through their Scotiabank account, or via the websites: www.adoptaroofbvi.com, www.OneLoveBVI.com, and www.sailorsforhope.com.
The AAR yesterday hosted an awareness evening for donors, partners, and supporters to celebrate their achievement. The event was held at the Brandywine restaurant in Road Town.
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