One South Florida firm’s response to Dorian

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Denison Yacht Sales has established a gofundme page for relief efforts for the Bahamas. The brokerage firm is one of many marine businesses in South Florida that are attempting to raise funds and collect supplies to be used in recovery efforts for the Bahamas.

The company has also set up a raffle to auction charters that have been donated by their clients in order to raise more money.

“We initially had a ton of clients reach out to us who wanted to bring their boats to the Bahamas with supplies,” Bob Denison, president of Denison Yacht Sales, told editors of Active Interest Media on a call this morning. “We’ve been told that that is the exact wrong thing to do, given the hazards to navigation over there. There’s so much stuff in the water that they could tear up their hulls pretty easily.”

Instead, Denison asked the clients if they’d be willing to give up their boats for a day for use as charter vessels. A raffle attached to its gofundme page should attract more donations and raise more money for the efforts.

The raffle “is in no way a Denison Yachts thing,” according to Denison, and he has been contacting other South Florida brokerage firms to gain more support.

“We’d like to do a larger event to keep this effort on the front of people’s minds,” he said. “This is a start, but we want to attach it to something bigger and more formal like an auction.”

The Denison gofundme page has doubled from about $16,000 yesterday to about $33,000 today, following an email the company sent to its clients yesterday. Bob Denison is also part of other groups involved in Bahamian relief efforts, including Hope 4 Hopetown, a fundraiser for the Abacos. It has raised $220,000 of its $1m goal.

Denison says the company is still working on where the money will be best spent. “We’re looking at supplies and tools for rebuilding and also medical supplies that are high-cost and low-volume, like insulin for a diabetic,” he said.

Denison reiterated that an industrywide effort will be most effective. “We’re willing to open it up to other businesses to have a wider impact,” he said. “Right now, this is just round one. We hope to make this a long-term effort.” 

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