Earthquakes have ravaged Puerto Rico. Here’s how you can help.
On December 28th, 2019, barely two years after being devastated by Hurricane Maria, the small tropical island of Puerto Rico was struck by a 4.7 magnitude earthquake. Mere hours later, early in the morning of December 29th, a 5.0 magnitude quake shook the island yet again. The earthquakes continued well into January 2020, the largest of which, a 6.4 magnitude event, striking on January 7th. This monster quake was closely followed by a 5.6 and a 5.0 event.
In their wake, the earthquakes left buildings crumbled, roads inaccessible, and lives forever changed. Thousands were left homeless, sleeping in cars, shelters, tents, and on sidewalks. Even those with houses still standing were afraid to return to them for fear of another earthquake striking. Apart from homes, schools, churches, government buildings, and tourist attractions were severely damaged or destroyed. Hundreds of thousands of the island’s residents were left without water, while hundreds of thousands more had no power, with damages to one power plant estimated to take at least a year to repair. All in all, damages are estimated to be around $3.1 billion.
At Islands Arts and Artlicity, we have compiled a list of charitable organizations offering relief to Puerto Rico in this trying time. While government agencies and non-profit organizations have been scrambling to provide relief, this has barely scratched the surface of the aid needed to return the island to even a semblance of its former self. Many organizations offer direct aid to the victims of the earthquakes, made possible through donations. Some offer general aid while others offer ways to support specific needs, such as schools, food, or mental health.
Please consider donating to one or more of these organizations and helping our Caribbean brothers and sisters.
While the American Red Cross website does not offer a way to donate to Puerto Rico specifically, donations can be specified for disaster relief. You can also text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation (charged through your phone carrier) or call 1-800-RED CROSS.