José on the ground: WCK team serving thousands of meals in The Bahamas
Hurricane Dorian is the most powerful Atlantic storm in recorded history to ever hit land. Now, less than two weeks after initially making landfall, we are serving 30,000 meals a day in Nassau, Abaco, and Grand Bahama.
WCK arrived in Nassau ahead of the storm to preposition ourselves for a massive relief effort, knowing thousands of people would be in need. Last Tuesday, after Dorian finally passed the islands, our Chef Relief team led by José was first able to make it to Abaco. With communications down and airports still closed, the island was nearly impossible to reach. Now, we are bringing meals from our kitchen 80 miles away in Nassau to Abaco and surrounding islands in several helicopter and seaplane trips each day. WCK is committed to doing whatever it takes to get food to the people who need it most, whether that is by boat, plane, or helicopter.
WCK was one of the first organizations on the ground in Abaco and is the only one providing fresh meals. We are currently delivering to the makeshift shelters in the government center and schools, a hospital, clinics, churches, and into local neighborhoods. Across the Northern Bahamas, the team is now delivering 30,000 meals per day.
Prior to Dorian hitting The Bahamas, we had members of our Chef Relief Team stationed in Florida in case Dorian made landfall there. When the storm shifted, WCK pivoted and filled a 220-foot boat with kitchen supplies, ingredients, and more that first made it to Freeport in Grand Bahama Thursday night. The team unloaded the boat and has been cooking meals to be delivered to shelters and communities across the island. This week, the boat made another trip to Florida and back, bringing an additional 500,000 pounds of food, supplies, and water.
With the help of our #ChefsForPuertoRico team, WCK’s paella operation has been up and running all week in Freeport! We are working side by side with local chefs, and the amazing Grand Bahama community is helping deliver meals to hard hit areas.
So far, World Central Kitchen has served more than 200,000 meals, and we will keep cooking.
Because of the devastation and current conditions after Dorian hit, many people are leaving the northern islands, and that number will continue to grow. Shelters in Nassau have seen a large influx, so our relief team has been providing meals there as well. We are prepared to scale up as the number of people increases.
The need in The Bahamas is big and logistics complex, so we need your help to make sure we can keep delivering meals to those affected. To support our efforts, please donate here.
Donations of all sizes are fueling our work and allowing us to serve meals to those most in need. We want to especially thank our catalyzing supporters that include Marc and Lynne Benioff, The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, Carnival Foundation & Carnival Corporation, Natasha and Dirk Ziff, and the Clara Lionel Foundation.