St. John USVI Hurricane Benefit to be held in Scituate

Former Scituate resident finds support in community homecoming – In the wake of Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria, the small island of St. John has suffered tremendously.  A group of local friends, in support of displaced island residents Veronica Pozas and Brian Woods, have organized a St. John USVI Hurricane Benefit, on Saturday, November 18, from 6 to 10 pm at Scituate Knights of Columbus, 234 Chief Justice Cushing Highway.  The evening will include Reggae music entertainment by the High Hopes Band, cash bar, raffle fundraisers, and a buffet dinner.  All proceeds benefit St. John’s Gifft Hill School and St. John Animal Care Center, both 501(c)3 non-profit organizations located on the island, to assist in disaster relief.

Swiftly following the back to back hurricane disasters, former Scituate resident Veronica Pozas and her husband Brian Woods returned to the South Shore to regroup and recover from their experience.  Since their return stateside, the Gifft Hill School, where Veronica is a Spanish, Science, and Math teacher for grades 6 through 12, has transitioned into a community private school to serve the greater public need.  The institution has accommodated the community as an interim shelter, opening its doors to all students on the island to attend tuition free.  The St. John Animal Care Center, an organization where Veronica was formerly employed and still supports, has successfully rescued many of the abandoned animals from the natural disaster, and still stands in need of funds to continue their efforts.  

The Gifft Hill School is a community school celebrating 40 years serving students on St. John.  The institution rests on 14 acres contiguous to Virgin Islands National Park land, overlooking the Caribbean.  Students in preschool through grade 12 are engaged in experiential learning to become compassionate about their community, an enriched environment.  Small class sizes and low student-teacher ratios are hallmarks of their programs, designed to focus on critical reasoning, and the ability to invent and adapt, while on their path towards college and career preparation.

The Animal Care Center of St. John is dedicated to the well-being and care of homeless, abandoned and abused animals on the island. The organization addresses the problems of cruelty to, neglect and abuse of the island animals. The shelter provides kennels for homeless dogs and inside cages for a limited number of homeless cats. The Animal Care Center suffered significant damage to their facilities during Hurricane Irma and is in need of help with rebuilding.

To learn more about the first hand account of Veronica and Brian’s St. John hurricane experiences, and to hear more information about the Benefit, join Veronica and the congregation at First Trinitarian Congregational Church on Sunday, November 5, at 10 am.  A Q&A with Reverend Estelle Margarones will be held during the worship service.

Tickets for the St. John USVI Hurricane Benefit are $10 in advance, or $15 at the door, as available.  To purchase advance tickets, visit Admission is limited to capacity, advance ticket purchase is recommended. To make a donation, volunteer, or donate an item to raffle, call Veronica at 781-738-1187 or Brian at 781-589-9890.  

Public relations services for this benefit are donated by Michelle McGrath PR | Media Relations,  providing visibility for the arts, small business and non-profits,