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Beauty with a Purpose

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Matthew formed from a tropical wave that pushed off the African coast.  In a matter of days, the system built in to Tropical Storm Matthew near the Windward Islands.  Once Matthew reached the eastern Caribbean, it became a hurricane and rapidly intensified, peaking in intensity as a Category 5 strength storm with 160 mph winds.  It racked communities from the Caribbean to the Southeast U.S., leaving a death toll of 1,384 lives.

Matthew hammered the Bahamas October 5 - 6 as a Category 3 and 4 hurricane.  By the time it had left our shores, the damage totaled $600,000,000. Many were left homeless and hopeless, having lost everything but their lives in the storm.  My Beauty With a Purpose project was to assess the damage to the hardest hit areas, acquire and deliver food supplies to those most in need, and to raise money for a rebuilding effort.

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The effort began with a series of visits to the areas that were hardest hit in New Providence and Andros, two of the three islands that received the most damage.  Many were left destitute as Hurricane Matthew ripped away their homes and possessions, leaving some with only the clothes on their backs.  Still others experienced substantial property damage.  Though shell shocked from the experience, survivors were grateful to be alive but in significant need.

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As Miss World Bahamas, I serve as a brand ambassador for The Island Game Foundation - an organization dedicated to helping the less fortunate in the community.  We sat in the Island Games Foundation office and said, “What can we do to help the residents of Andros who were heavily affected by Hurricane Matthew?” So we formulated a plan to put together care packages- one containing cleaning supplies and one containing nonperishable food goods. I sprang into action by organizing a relief effort with the support of The Island Game Foundation. Over $15,000 worth of goods were provided at cost by Island Wholesale and Grace Products, Bahamas Wholesale Agencies, Thompson Trading, Aquapure, and the TIG Foundation.  I then made a second trip to Central Andros along with The Island Game proprietor Pete Deveaux to distribute care packages to those most in need, distributing packages to over 400 households.  It took two weeks of hard work organizing it all, but to see the joy on the faces of the Androsians, knowing that someone cares for them, was well worth it.

The second phase of the project is to raise funds for a rebuilding effort. I have partnered with event producer Ryan Knowles to stage Concert for a Cause, a benefit concert featuring leading musical artists in The Bahamas and an art sale by prominent local artists.  The Island Game Foundation has once again joined the effort, this time matching the amount of money raised at the concert/art sale event which will be held in mid-November.  One hundred percent of the proceeds from the concert/art sale will be donated to charities involved in relief efforts.

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Special Features

Each week, BWP will present a new in-depth report on one of the many charity projects worldwide that has benefitted from the work of Julia Morley and the support of Beauty with a Purpose. Keep watching this space for more details on these special features.

Julia Morley



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