From Astrid Cruz — aka @artistikem — who I asked to submit prior updates to assist in aid efforts she was undertaking.
It’s been a year since Puerto Rico was hit by hurricane María already. A storm we didn’t think would be any different from previous ones because, hey, this wasn’t our first rodeo. We had Hugo in 1989, Georges in 1998, hurricane seasons every-effing-year so we must have known our way around this!
How wrong we were.
I apologize if this post sounds like a ramble. It’s been a tough year.
Today, local channels are forcing us to relive a disaster we’re still in and it’s all too fresh. Just last week 20,000 pallets of bottled water were found at an unused runway in Ceiba. While most of us were struggling to get something as essential as clean water, supplies were getting stuck somewhere completely out of reach (https://edition.cnn.com/2018/09/12/us/puerto-rico-bottled-water-dump-weir/index.html). The death toll has fluctuated but official numbers are around 3,000. I’ve read people dismissing those numbers and all I can think of is the many who, to this day, remain unaccounted for.
Insurance companies failed, the government both local and federal, failed. Local, grassroots efforts were the most effective but, sadly, their reach would never compare to what our government could have managed. Our electric power structure is still frail, we’re still getting blackouts, we’re still driving by damaged buildings… We’re still in the midst of a crisis.
Even through all this, I’m thankful for the lessons learned and how we managed, how we came together, both local and foreign, with one purpose in mind: to help those who needed us the most.
Thank you for being there in our time of need.
And if you’re one of those who believe it’s over down here, here are some articles to add to your reading list:
Video: Google Will Match Your Cash Donation To Puerto Rico
Shocking Death Toll In Post-Hurricane Puerto Rico
Frontline: Blackout In Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico: Tears And Tear Gas
May 1st Protest In Puerto Rico
The Latest Update From Puerto Rico
Final Update (#7) From Puerto Rico
Update #6 From Puerto Rico
Hurricane Relief For Puerto Rico Is Still Needed
Weekly Update #4 From Puerto Rico
Weekly Update #3 From Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico And America’s House Of Cards
Weekly Update #1 From Puerto Rico
The Post-Maria Horror In Puerto Rico Continues
Third Update From Puerto Rico
Don’t Forget Puerto Rico Or Its Abandoned Pets
Puerto Rico Is Still In Trouble
Second Update From Puerto Rico
An Update From Puerto Rico
Amazon Wish List For Hurricane Maria Relief In Puerto Rico