Help Continues Despite Shortages
The Salvation Army fights to serve Puerto Rico & U.S. Virgin Islands
The charity shifts into overdrive to provide resources and care to Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands
UPDATE October 2, 2017: In one of the worst Hurricane seasons in a decade, The Salvation Army is unwavering in its continued efforts to serve those affected by the storms. For Hurricane Irma and Maria, which obliterated much of Puerto Rico’s and the U.S. Virgin Islands’ infrastructure, The Salvation Army overcomes supply chain challenges to ensure priority needs are met. Last week, The Salvation Army shipped to the areas of greatest need:
· 112,680 bottles of water
· 6,720 meals ready to eat
· 2 pallets of tarps
· 5 cases of water filtration
· 4,530 snacks ready to eat
· 1,000 cases of organic baby food
“We have truly turned a corner to persevere and deliver hope and help to our neighbors in need,” said Michael Orfitelli, Territorial Coordinator of Emergency Disaster Services. “We are grateful for the continued generosity of our donors and partners. These gifts provide food, supplies, and emotional and spiritual care to those affected by the devastating weather events.”
Some key updates for Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico & Virgin Islands are (as of 9.29.17):
In Puerto Rico
• The Salvation Army continues to fight to meet the needs of San Juan, Loiza, Fajardo, Humacao, Guayama, Ponce, Areciro, Mayaguez, Penuelas, and Caguas.
• In total, nearly 273,400 meals and snacks have been distributed to those in need since the impact of Hurricane Irma.
In St. Thomas
• The Salvation Army has partnered with the Dutch Reform Church to serve almost 72,000 meals and snacks, along with delivering food, water, and supply boxes to the poorest communities on the Island. These resources are delivered to nursing homes, one skilled care facility, and shelters of the American Red Cross and Catholic Charities.
• The Salvation Army is serving nearly 6,000 families daily.
In St. John
• The Salvation Army is partnering with a local cafe to serve 1,200 families each day.
In St. Croix
• The Salvation Army is serving nearly 1,000 families each day.
With a permanent footprint in the affected communities, The Salvation Army Disaster Services will continue to provide assistance until the need is met and beyond.
As The Salvation Army is hard at work providing disaster relief in response to the recent hurricanes, we recognize many of you may be worried, anxious and feeling helpless. Particularly for those of you with friends and family in Puerto Rico, the distance from your loved ones and not being able to directly help them can be exceedingly taxing and frustrating. We recognize this can begin to affect your daily activities and so it is important to engage in self-care both physically, mentally and spiritually.
Here are some resources that are updated fairly regularly and can provide guidance on what is being offered in Puerto Rico as well as information on how to obtain mental health support.
Disaster Distress Helpline
SAMHSA’s Disaster Distress Helpline provides 24/7, 365-day-a-year crisis counseling and support to people experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters.
FEMA Points of Distribution in Puerto Rico
Points of distribution are open in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands for survivors to get meals, water, and other commodities.
Scroll down and click on Point of Distribution locations. This list has been growing in length and detail each day.
American Red Cross Safe and Well
After a disaster, letting your family and friends know that you are safe and well can bring your loved ones great peace of mind. This website is designed to help make that communication easier.
How People Can Help
Response efforts to this hurricane and flooding are expected be costly and last for years. The best way to help after a disaster is to make a financial donation.
Donate By Phone:
Text to Give:
STORM to 51555
The Salvation Army
PO Box 1959
Atlanta, GA 30301
** Please designate “Hurricane 2017” on all checks.
About The Salvation Army Disaster Services
The Salvation Army is uniquely positioned to serve those impacted by the storm, however long it takes, because they are there before, during, and after impact. Beyond serving immediate physical needs, they also meet the emotional and spiritual needs that are unique to catastrophic events. The Salvation Army:
- Delivers disaster relief to an average of 382,000 people annually.
- Serves every ZIP code in the United States and touches almost 25 million lives a year.
- Has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900.
- Remains in communities until needs are met.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index (HumanNeedsIndex.org). The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts.