Michael Jordan is pledging $1 million to hurricane relief efforts in the Bahamas after Hurricane Dorian caused immeasurable destruction across the country.
The hurricane, which is the biggest storm to ever make landfall in the country, destroyed entire neighbourhoods and claimed at least 50 lives.
In a statement posted to social media earlier today (September 10) by his manager/spokeswoman Estee Portnoy, Jordan said he is ‘devastated’ after seeing the destruction the storm has caused.
Statement From Michael Jordan pic.twitter.com/JIcPGE8y2C
— Estee Portnoy (@esteep) September 10, 2019
The statement read:
I am devastated to see the destruction that Hurricane Dorian has brought to the Bahamas, where I own property and visit frequently. My heart goes out to everyone who is suffering and to those who have lost loved ones.
As the recovery and relief efforts continue, I will be tracking the situation closely and working to identify non-profit agencies where the funds will have the most impact.
The Bahamian people are strong and resilient and I hope that my donation will be of help as they work to recover from this catastrophic storm.
A Category 5 storm, Dorian hit the Bahamas on September 1 with winds of 220mph. Large swaths of Greater Abaco Island were destroyed and more than 2,500 people forced to evacuate.
The death toll rose to 50 on Monday (September 9), with 42 people killed from Abaco Island and eight from Grand Bahama, according to the Royal Bahamas Police Force, as per ABC News.
However, as teams continue to search through the rubble it is believed that number will only increase, as many bodies are feared buried in the rubble. Bahamian Health Minister Dr. Duane Sands told ABC News it’s possible some people were washed out to sea and might never be found.
An estimated 70,000 people ‘are in immediate need of life-saving assistance‘ according to United Nations humanitarian chief Mark Lowcock – with the most urgent needs being water, food, shelter and accommodation – although Bahamian emergency management officials said food distribution was a ‘challenge’.
Furthermore, the drinking water in some areas of the islands has been deemed unsafe for consumption and hygiene.
As reported by The Guardian, the government of the Bahamas confirmed more than 900 members of its police and military were on Abaco and Grand Bahama to help with hurricane relief, with more than 100 Jamaican security personnel on board too.
Large numbers of security forces from Britain and the US were also involved in search, rescue, and recovery operations, the Bahamian government said.
Dorian was downgraded to a post-tropical cyclone on Sunday (September 8) after making landfall one last time in Nova Scotia, Canada – where it hit as a Category 2 hurricane with winds of 100mph tearing roofs off homes and uprooting trees.
The deadly storm also hit North Carolina’s Outer Banks on Friday as a Category 1 storm with sustained winds of 90mph.
Without a doubt though, nowhere has felt the devastation as acutely as the Bahamas, with families searching for their missing loved ones day after day – of which there are hundreds, possibly thousands.
Our thoughts are with those affected.
A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).