Maine sailor organizes sail drive for Haiti

We have already written about efforts in Miami to collect used sails for use as shelter in Haiti. Now a Maine-based sailor is leading the effort in his state. Let’s get every sailing state to do this!

From the press release: Haitians still have a pressing need for food and shelter as they recover from the massive earthquake that struck in January. As a member of the Maine sailing community, John Eide is organizing a drive to collect used sails to be shipped to Haiti to be used as makeshift shelter. The rainy season is starting early this year in the Caribbean, so the faster we can get our used sails to Haiti, the better off the estimated 770,000 homeless will be.

John got the idea to start the drive after sailing down in the Caribbean.  His host was a medical responder who had just returned from Port au Prince, Haiti.  “My friend mentioned that food and shelter are now the primary concerns for Haitians, and that used sails made great material for tents.  Shake-a-Leg Foundation, which helps children and adults with physical, developmental and economic challenges get out on the water, has partnered with Haiti-Life to handle the logistics of getting the sails into Haiti.  I got back to Maine this Monday, and the response has been overwhelming!”

The following businesses have volunteered to serve as drop off locations for your old sails.

Maine Sailing Partners in Freeport is willing to be a drop-off point for your sails, March 5 until March 19, M-F 8:00 to 5:00.  24 Noble Drive, Freeport, ME 04032   207-865-0850 or 888-788-7245

Pope Sails and Rigging, in Rockland will accept sails in the mid-coast area, March 5 until March 19, M-F 8:00 to 5:00.  237 Park Street, Rockland, ME 04841  207-596-7293

Sea Bags, Custom House Wharf, on the Portland Waterfront, will accept sails and give you a bag in return, thru March 19.

Portland Yacht Service will accept sails in Building 11 during the hours of the Maine Boatbuilders Show, March 19, 20 and 21.  58 Fore Street, Portland, Maine  

The sails will then be trucked to Miami where two organizations, Haiti-Life and Shake-a-Leg, have the infrastructure in place to ship the sails to Haiti.  Please contact your friends, fellow yacht club members, and other sailors, anyone you know who might have old, used sails taking up space and ask them to donate to the people of Haiti.  Deadline for donations will be Friday, March 19.

The fine print:
Shake A Leg the Miami collection point, and Haiti-Life, the shipper to and distributor in Haiti are both 501c3 organizations so your donation is tax deductible. Shipping from Miami to Haiti is funded by Project Medishare, also a 501c3.
Please have the hoist and foot lengths available so we can properly tag the sail.

Maine Built Boats applauds the John’s efforts and the efforts of all the Maine Businesses that are spending their time to help the citizens of Haiti.

By Ocean Navigator