Puerto Rico Earthquake Relief

A collapsed home after an earthquake in Guanica, Puerto Rico, on 1/7/2020. (Source: Reuters TV)

Since the beginning of 2020, Puerto Rico has been trembling for over a week and it hasn’t stopped. On January 6th, a 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck the U.S. territory, followed by a 6.4-magnitude earthquake just a few days later—the worst earthquake for the island in more than a century. A barrage of tremors continue to cause further damage to not only buildings and roads, but to the physical and emotional well-being of the island’s residents.

The earthquakes and aftershocks have knocked out power to much of the island, seriously damaging homes and infrastructure and leaving at least four people dead. The governor of Puerto Rico has declared a state of emergency saying the island has never been exposed to this kind of emergency in 102 years. These earthquakes come two years after Hurricane Maria hit in September 2017, the worst natural disaster in the island’s modern history.

The recovery process will be long and difficult in communities throughout the region. The organizations below provide immediate and long-term relief to affected residents. This list will be updated as more information and resources are available.

  • The UNIDOS Disaster Relief and Recovery Program serves the immediate and long-term needs of Puerto Rican families and communities affected by the earthquakes.
  • ConPRmetidos supports immediate- and long-term structural repairs in disadvantaged communities.
  • Fundación Comunitaria contributes to the development of Puerto Rican communities through personalized philanthropic advice to individuals, families, corporations and foundations and provides emergency funds to assist communities affected by the earthquakes.
  • World Central Kitchen is providing free lunch and dinner at five locations in Puerto Rico (Ponce, Yauco, Guanica, Peñuelas, and Guayanilla) for residents and disaster-relief workers.
  • Center for Disaster Philanthropy funds strategic, long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts to help strengthen communities and position them to better withstand future disasters.
  • Operation USA is a Los Angeles-based international disaster relief and development agency helping communities at home and abroad overcome the effects of disasters, disease, violence and endemic poverty.
  • Team Rubicon is an international disaster response nonprofit that unites the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders to rapidly provide relief to communities in need.
  • Direct Relief continues to support the island’s recovery, strengthening health and power infrastructure damaged by natural disasters.

When supporting relief organizations, consider marking your gift as general operating support. By doing so, you enable the organization to both respond to current disasters and be prepared for those that may arise in the future. Visit CCF’s disaster giving page for more tips on how to maximize your impact when giving to disaster relief.

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