This blog originally appeared on The Patterson Foundation’s website.
In a year that could be readily defined by the disasters of unprecedented scale that have afflicted our world since its opening months, 2020 will also be remembered for its severe Atlantic Hurricane Season. On average, around 12 tropical storms and roughly six hurricanes form in the Atlantic Ocean a year. To date, the Atlantic has seen 27 tropical storms and 10 hurricanes.
The Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) gives donors a way to help the people and communities impacted by these and other disasters strategically – strengthening efforts that go beyond initial disaster relief to long-term recovery. That emphasis on recovery and future resiliency is at the heart of The Patterson Foundation’s latest contribution to its long-time collaborator: $250,000 to the CDP Atlantic Hurricane Season Recovery Fund.
The CDP Atlantic Hurricane Season Recovery Fund is focused on medium- and long-term needs in the impacted regions, such as rebuilding homes and livelihoods, meeting the needs of more vulnerable populations, supporting mental health services and addressing other urgent challenges identified by the affected communities that arise as recovery efforts progress. COVID-19 is creating further challenges this season, as disaster and emergency resources are already stretched thin by the ongoing pandemic response.
“With both a pandemic and an aggressive hurricane season to contend with, many are coping with an incessant threat to their safety and well-being,” said Debra Jacobs, president and CEO of The Patterson Foundation. “Years of involvement with the Center for Disaster Philanthropy has illustrated the importance of long-term recovery and the opportunity it presents to innovate toward building stronger communities. CDP continues to demonstrate the insight, strategy and expertise to address these complex challenges and set these communities up to thrive in the future.”
Hurricane Zeta is the latest in a series of severe storms that have formed in the Atlantic — several of which have caused significant damage. Hurricane Sally made landfall near Gulf Shores, Alabama as a Category 2 hurricane. The slow-moving storm resulted in rain that was measured in feet, not inches, and the brunt of the damage was felt in the Florida panhandle. Just a few weeks later, Hurricane Laura made landfall near Cameron, Louisiana as a Category 4 hurricane, causing extensive damage estimated at $10-12 billion. Hurricane Isaias hit the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico the hardest. Puerto Rico, which is still recovering from Hurricane Maria in 2017, now has an estimated $47.5 million in losses due to Isaias
While the immediate crisis-relief need for these storms has subsided, disaster-recovery costs are expected to rise as officials continue assessing the damage.
Since 2012, The Patterson Foundation has contributed more than $4.75 million to CDP to support efforts for major disasters such as Hurricane Harvey and the Global Refugee Crisis. This latest gift is intended to catalyze additional donations from other funders monitoring damages caused by the storms.
CDP works to connect donors with insight and information from experts in philanthropy to increase donors’ impact throughout the complete lifecycle of domestic and international disasters. Donations for disaster-relief and recovery efforts typically decline following the immediate aftermath of a disaster – leaving several important recovery projects underfunded. The CDP Atlantic Hurricane Season Recovery Fund is a resource for donors interested in contributing to disaster relief and recovery efforts to give proactively. This will help ensure a more solidified medium- and long-term recovery effort.
“The Patterson Foundation has been a leader in responsive giving in times of disasters,” said Patricia McIlreavy, president and CEO of the Center for Disaster Philanthropy. “We are grateful to The Patterson Foundation for their generous and steadfast commitment to supporting the equitable recovery of communities living in areas hit by this year’s hurricanes and for inviting other donors to do the same. Their support allows us to help communities rebuild and withstand future disasters.”
To learn more about the Center for Disaster Philanthropy and contribute to its Atlantic Hurricane Season Recovery Fund, visit www.disasterphilanthropy.org. Please visit www.thepattersonfoundation.org for more information on The Patterson Foundation.