Apply to Join

Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery

by Filantropía Puerto Rico
Play Video
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
Puerto Rico emergency relief / long-term recovery
A volunteer dispatches food to community members
A volunteer dispatches food to community members

The FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund is a fund that supports local grassroots organizations that are assisting communities affected by the devastating hurricanes Irma and Maria. This report describes the work that is being done by one of the organizations supported through the Fund.

 

CENTROS SOR ISOLINA FERRÉ

Founded in 1969 in the La Playa sector of the city of Ponce by a catholic nun, Sor Isolina Ferré, the Centers that bear her name belong to a non-profit organization that promotes the full development of the human being. The Sor Isolina Ferré Centers (CSIF) serve over 37,000 people of all ages who reside in 22 municipalities, in the areas of dropout prevention, violence prevention, and community empowerment and development through advocacy, education, and training programs.

After the devastation left by Hurricane María, CSIF has refocused all its resources in the short term, to serve María’s victims in 71 low income communities located in the southern and central regions of Puerto Rico, San Juan, and Canóvanas. As part of operation “A Solidary Embrace for Puerto Rico,” CSIF is operating two donation/collection centers. Aid shipments sent from Puerto Ricans from the United States and donations received locally are being distributed to places where no other assistance is being provided. As of November 7, 2017, 12,378 persons had been served by volunteer social workers and individuals who are distributing supplies house by house in low income communities and making an assessment of other needs. An estimated 144,290 tons of food, 11,117 gallons of water and other articles such as mattresses and gas stoves have been distributed across the island.  

“In the midst of this situation, our employees –some who themselves are victims of María– are working voluntarily in CSIF’s relief effort. They are the silent heroes that selflessly work very hard every single day to pick up, receive and distribute the food and water that are still very scarce in many communities in Puerto Rico. They are being true to CSIF’s mission: to help every person develop to his or her fullest potential,” said José Luis Díaz Cotto, CSIF’s Chief Executive Officer.

The recovery of Puerto Rico is going to take a long time. After the emergency period, CSIF plans to strengthen its relationships with new collaborators –individuals, private businesses and organizations– that have made donations during this emergency and work to strengthen its programs. “It is imperative that we transcend the immediacy of the crisis and return to addressing the root of the different socio economic problems. This is the only path to long term solutions and to making sure that each person can have that second chance that will transform his or her life,” added Díaz Cotto. 

Volunteers dispatch furniture to community members
Volunteers dispatch furniture to community members

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Volunteers organize food and supplies
Volunteers organize food and supplies

The FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund is a fund that supports local grassroots organizations that are assisting communities affected by the devastating hurricanes Irma and Maria. This report describes the work that is being done by one of the organizations supported through the Fund.

 

CREARTE

The hallways of the CREARTE center in San Juan fill with the sounds of teenagers chatting, teachers calling their classrooms to order, and children running energetically from one class to another. Some parts of the building are well lit thanks to a generator, while others remain dark, but aside from that everything goes on as if it were just another typical school day.

In fact, it was to regain something approximating normality that the nonprofit organization decided to resume its educational and recreational programs on October 2nd, without electricity and with some areas damaged by Hurricane Maria. CREARTE, which has been offering services for 16 years to the community of San José in Río Piedras, even received new participants, since many public schools remain closed. Enrollment at the San Juan center increased to 125 students at the middle and high school, which offers an alternative educational model based on values. There are also 110 participants in their afterschool program and 22 children and babies in their pre-school center.

“For the people in San Juan the priority is education. In San Juan the difference is that we’ve received five new participants from a school that closed, and their mothers are desperate because their kids aren’t in school. In San Juan we are trying to be an incentive for these students to prevent school dropouts,” explained Brenda Liz Santos Hernández, a psychologist and executive director of CREARTE.

In Yabucoa, where CREARTE has another center, the response after the hurricane has been much broader and encompasses many of the communities in this southeastern municipality, which was the entry point of the Category 4 storm. Even though the facilities were severely damaged, CREARTE set up a collection center for people to come pick up food, water, and supplies, receive medical attention or speak with one of the psychologists or social workers that work with the organization. Those who visit the collection center are interviewed to assess their particular needs and offer personalized assistance, but volunteers have also visited communities directly.

CREARTE also resumed its educational programs and has even seen enrollment increase from 60 to over 80 participants.

CREARTE’s strategy for working with these communities in the long term is divided into two stages, which are being partially funded by the FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund. “We are still in the first stage of rescue, stabilization, and food. At the end of November, beginning of December, we begin a more formal stage of visiting and restructuring these communities to help them get organized and to see how the communities themselves can become empowered. And to be an element of support for those people who were most hurt,” described Santos Hernández.

In this new post-Maria reality, serving the communities of Yabucoa has become a new part of CREARTE’s mission.

“We had to transform, and we’ve added to our operation a project to rescue, to empower, to reconstruct the communities that were most affected by Hurricane Maria,” she stated.

Volunteers dispatch food to community members
Volunteers dispatch food to community members
Health services are provided to community members
Health services are provided to community members

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Volunteer dispatches food to community members
Volunteer dispatches food to community members

The FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund is a fund that supports local grassroots organizations that are assisting communities affected by the devastating hurricanes Irma and Maria. This report describes the work that is being done by one of the organizations supported through the Fund.

 

PECES

Hurricane Maria hit land at Barrio Punta Santiago in the town of Humacao with winds reaching at least 185 miles an hour. The combination of rain and wind created a sea surge that flooded this community built by fishermen. Since 1985, this area is the home of Programa de Educación Comunitario de Entrega y Servicio (P.E.C.E.S.) which signals a community education program that emphasizes dedication and service. PECES is also the Spanish word for “fish,” a name that evokes the community’s origins. When José Javier Oquendo, PECES´ president, walked through the neighborhood after Hurricane Maria, he was overtaken with grief as neighbors in tears told him how the water flooded their modest homes taking all they owned. He later recounted, “These scenarios are only lived in horror movies. I didn´t know what to tell them.” But together, the community quickly realized “that what we need is our willpower”. PECES lost all of its facilities except for their main building, which houses its headquarters.

Before the storm, PECES’s education and community development activities were already reaching over 25,000 people a year. After Hurricanes Irma and María, PECES quickly became a hub for the distribution of goods and services to the community. Working largely with Puerto Rico’s private and nonprofit sectors, over 100,000 pounds of products such as food, bottled water, cleaning and hygiene supplies were distributed, sometimes house to house, to 10,756 persons in 22 communities, including Humacao, Fajardo, Juncos, Gurabo, Las Piedras, Naguabo, Salinas and Guayama. Partnering with hundreds of volunteers, PECES has organized deliveries of freshly cooked food, clothes and shoes, home medical services, health fairs, social work and psychological services, as well as drug store services.

As in many parts of Puerto Rico, this area is still without electricity. The storm left debris that clogs the water channels, and recent rains flooded the area again. The PECES community realizes that even as the needs for immediate relief continue, they must think ahead and move toward a sustainable approach to greater community self-management in areas such as energy and water.  They are planning new workshops to train community members to rebuild houses, and are considering how to incorporate solar energy in a community-based approach.

Under these challenging circumstances, it is heartening to see community members, some of whom lost everything they owned, working hard to serve others. As Oquendo states, “our people are giving their 100% when they have lost everything”.

Volunteers dispatch food to community members
Volunteers dispatch food to community members
Volunteer dispatches food to community members
Volunteer dispatches food to community members

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
CPI reporter in the field
CPI reporter in the field

The FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund is a fund that supports local grassroots organizations that are assisting communities affected by the devastating hurricanes Irma and Maria. This report describes the work that is being done by one of the organizations supported through the Fund.

 

CENTRO DE PERIODISMO INVESTIGATIVO (CPI)

In the aftermath of hurricane Maria, the Center for Investigative Journalism (CPI) has published dozens of high-impact stories. "We were the first to report from the mountainous region, which motivated the commercial media to move outside the metro area”, said Carla Minet, Executive Director of the CPI. “Our team has been reporting with great commitment, a deep sense of urgency and critical vision. We have visited communities in many affected towns such as Utuado, Salinas, Cidra, Cayey, Ponce, Ciales, Caguas, Santurce, Aguadilla, Mayagüez, Dorado, Toa Baja and Maunabo, among others.”

CPI tackled issues such as the undercounting of hurricane-related deaths by the Puerto Rican government provoking an official US Senate investigation. Working in collaboration with the Miami Herald, CPI also published a documented chronological history of where the emergency operation has failed. "We have been at the forefront of the in-depth coverage of health issues and contaminated water consumption, of the social repercussions of the curfew, as well as analysis on how the issue of Puerto Rico’s public debt impacts recovery efforts, among other relevant issues," said Minet.

By publishing most of their stories in Spanish and English, CPI’s impact generates international interest in Puerto Rico, and some of their stories have become "breaking news".

The hurricane has motivated CPI to set new goals. As the director of the CPI explained, "we need to expand our coverage so that our stories and research have the greatest possible impact. We are recruiting additional journalists, photographers, videographers, translators and data management specialists, and have new expenses such as satellite phones to compensate for the lack of electricity and wi-fi throughout the island, batteries, transportation and food and lodging.” The FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund is providing support to CPI to enable them to advance toward their goals and continue their impressive work. “We are convinced, and we are witnessing it happen, that information is a key element in the recovery process of our country."

The Center for Investigative Journalism (CPI) is a nonprofit organization founded in 2007 that promotes quality journalism free of political and commercial ties. Their web page is: www.periodismoinvestigativo.com. CPI has investigated issues including political corruption, favoritism in government contracting, electoral campaign financing, health, environment, and the economy. Its litigation on public access to information has won national and international recognition.

CPI reporter in the field
CPI reporter in the field
CPI staff meeting
CPI staff meeting

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
 

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Filantropía Puerto Rico

Location: San Juan - Puerto Rico
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Janice Petrovich
San Juan, Puerto Rico
$302,798 raised of $350,000 goal
 
2,367 donations
$47,202 to go
Donate Now Add Project to Favorites

Help raise money!

Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.