As Sint Maarteners, it pains us to see the heart of the devastation that is taking place in our home. It frustrates us, even more, to see how long it is taking to begin any sort of real restoration and reconstruction to the island that will begin to place roofs over people’s heads, jobs, and incomes to people’s homes. You as a Sint Maartener personally feel and sacrifice every day, the effects of the major destruction hurricane Irma has caused on Sint Maarten. To roads, electricity, water, homes, business and hotels and restaurants, which all are severely affected. This is a beyond belief situation in and of itself. It needs to be solved right away. Many valuable weeks have been lost by due to the delay in starting the rebuild of Sint Maarten, which is very frustrating. Not only that, we have to have the utmost attention and care that the reconstruction is not going to take us back to the way things were before hurricane Irma.
Let us do it together
We want to reach out to our fellow Sint Maarteners on the island who want to know what they can do to help rebuild the island, our tourism industry, the economy and most importantly your personal and family lives. Together we can get this done. And we really do mean together! Too many voices on Social Media call for joining forces, but most actions show solitary behavior. This all cannot be done by a few single individuals.
We can be the ones who are standing on the front line of the new Sint Maarten. This will bring back hope. The people will be the new business owners and business developers! The people of Sint Maarten will be the ones who determine what happens with Sint Maarten.
UPG has a recovery plan as to how this can be done. Our recovery plan lays the foundation for a new and stronger Sint Maarten, equipped for the 21st century. A Sint Maarten where everyone benefits and not just a few. A platform that can create job opportunities for the people of Sint Maarten on Sint Maarten create a better economy and a strong island. A Sint Maarten where the people of the island are the ones making the difference. A Sint Maarten that you want to be a part of. A Sint Maarten that makes you say “I from there”!
Do not wait on political processes
Let us not wait for the political processes now underway; we can already do a lot to prepare the grounds for the rebuild and reconstruction. This can easily be in parallel with the elections, whether or not they are going to take place.
As UPG, we have already been in contact with several members of the Island Government and Dutch Government. The Dutch Government has been very enthusiastic to sit with us as Sint Maarteners and to help our island get back on its feet. Ironically, on the island, we have only been hampered by politics. We have been experiencing that it seems priorities are being placed on other activities instead of the most important one, rebuilding Sint Maarten. This makes us feel that the focus is not being placed on reconstruction and rebuilding the island, that is not a good sign and it does not feel good.
That is why we call for action – join us in the preparation of the recovery and you will feel truly and valuably involved. Your input matters!
For the past year, the Unleashed Potential Group has been developing ideas to strengthen the economy of Sint Maarten. We are doing this by working together with the people of the island who are living in the Netherlands. People, like you, who want to give back to our island. Young professionals who will make a difference. People who want to help make Sint Maarten great again! Our approach is to get things done with people who also want to do so. We try to avoid those who talk but do nothing.