After the Bahama Islands were devastated by Hurricane Dorian earlier this week, a Maine fire department is collecting supplies to help them rebuild.
The Goodwins Mills Fire Department, which serves the residents of Lyman and Dayton, is asking for donations of all kinds to help with relief efforts.
“It’s the things you take for granted,” Goodwins Mills Fire Chief Rod Hooper said. “The things you have every day and you’re never in need of and these folks are in need of the very, very basic of things.”
The idea came from one of the department’s firefighters, Tyler Richardson, whose wife has family still living in the Bahamas.
“When Tyler came to me with this idea, I said yea we have to do this,” Hooper said.
According to Abby Richardson, her family is safe but the devastation across the islands is unimaginable.
“Everything’s lost,” Richardson said. “Everything’s been either blown or washed away and there’s nothing left.”
Hurricane Dorian stayed over the islands for days, with heavy rain and unprecedented winds. According to Richardson, communication to the island is mostly cut off and homes that were built to withstand hurricane force winds have been destroyed.
“Roofs of these houses were just blow off as if they were paper.” Richardson said. “It’s just kind of crazy.”
Working with her husband and other firefighters, relief items will be collected at the department (481 Goodwins Mills Road, Lyman, ME) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. for the next few weeks.
Once enough items are collected, the department will bring them to Florida, where they will then be shipped to the Bahamas.
“We’re looking at the long game,” Tyler Richardson said. “We have a lot of people down there that right off the bat are bringing in donations but once the attention kind of goes away from it we want to make sure they’re still getting supplies.”
The Goodwins Mills Fire Department will also be collected monetary donations through the Camden National Bank.