This is one reason why Ambergris Today honored Brittney O’Daniel with the Person of the Year award, she has a big heart. Just concluding with her fundraising/humanitarian efforts along with the Lions Club/Food Bank for the fire victims of San Pedro, she takes on another challenge to rebuild San Mateo homes damaged by Hurricane Earl.
There are 52 homes in the San Mateo neighborhood (one of the poorest on the island) that were severely damaged by Hurricane Earl; six of them are complete rebuilds. Much needed supples are needed to help families rebuild there homes; most of them don't have anywhere else to go and cannot rebuild on their own.
Over the weekend, Brittney and her business partner David Jenkins, set out to rebuild these homes located across the Boca del Rio Bridge. They set out a call for money for plywood, zinc, lumber, nails, etc, donations, as well as volunteers to help them rebuild. The task ahead requires almost $20,000 for all the materials needed, but there is no stopping Brittney and David.
“No need to be a master builder (or novice builder for that matter). I just need AS MANY people as possible who don't mind getting a little dirty. These people truly NEED our help! If you can't make it but have some tools we can use that would be a big help as well! Let's step up people!” posted Britney on her Facebook post.
The great thing is that Britney and David have loyal friends and followers; about 40 volunteers showed up over the weekend and work commenced. The San Pedro Town Council and the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) joined in, assisted with funds, equipment and labor. When lumber arrived on Wednesday, August 17, skilled laborers got to work on areas the volunteers couldn’t; resorts like Victoria House and Mahogany Bay Village donated paid carpenters.
Around seven homes have been completed so far and work efforts will continue until every home has been rebuilt. Volunteers will be needed again this weekend and beyond as work is expected to continue over the next month or two.
“David is leading this project; I'm raising money along with Steve who is also doing all the ordering of materials,” commented Brittney. “We still need to raise another $10k to finish everything so we'll be raising funds all month long. Mahogany Bay Village/Pete Davis ($4k), Lola’s, Nook ($600), Crazy Canucks, people from states, Atlantic Bank International, Seaside Realty, Truck Stop ($1k), Casa Picasso, Lions have all donated funds; we thank them all. The fire chief has been amazing and the home owners have been rebuilding alongside us! Thanks to volunteers like Trevor, Vic, Jeff Parker, Ed Sparks, Ben Sept, Arcadia University volunteers; there are so much more. Thank You.”
Volunteer work and fundraising continues; donations can be made out to Raise Me Up or San Pedro Lions Club and work schedules and volunteer sign up can be done at Sandbar Hostel & Restaurant.
Let's all lend a helping hand.
San Pedro Mayor Daniel Guerrero presents check of $5,000 to Brittney O'Daniel for Hurricane Earl rebuild efforts
Atlantic Bank International Limited donated $3,000 towards building materials for San Mateo
Volunteer workers from Victoria House at San Mateo Rebuild
Home owners work alongside volunteers to get their homes rebuilt
Dari Bartz, here with David Jenkins, heard the call for help and flew in from Corozal on Saturday morning and worked non-stop. The next day she also brought $1k to help buy materials. She's a rockstar!