Through the new crowdfunding service, Level Giving, World Hope International is providing a highly vulnerable population in Puerto Rico with the relief supplies they need to thrive in post-hurricane recovery and to prepare for the future.
The devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in September 2017, and the painfully slow recovery, means that more than 6 months after the storm, Puerto Rico is battling the longest blackout in U.S. history. When FEMA ended its direct water and food aid program in Puerto Rico in February 2018, a third of the island was still without water.
For those on the ground, the destruction was unprecedented. “This is the worst situation in our history,” says Pastor Irving Figueroa of Iglesia Wesleyan in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. “It’s like being in a military combat situation.” Pastor Irving is World Hope International’s representative in the area, helping to successfully carryout relief programs.
World Hope International (WHI) is a US-based nonprofit working with vulnerable and exploited communities to alleviate poverty, suffering, and injustice. WHI believes in hiring and training locally so that they can respond in the most culturally appropriate and, ultimately, impactful way, which is why we wanted to partner with them for Level Giving’s inaugural campaign. Their relief efforts in Puerto Rico began the day after the hurricane so they’ve been on the ground since day one.
Their main focus has been power, water, and medical supplies, as this is where the need has been greatest. Just two weeks ago in April, the power grid failed again in Puerto Rico, highlighting the volatility of the situation and the long road to recovery that lies ahead.
By providing 500 Luci solar inflatable lights to residents, WHI is not only bringing light to people who would otherwise be in the dark, they’re also providing safety and security in a recovery zone. They’re enabling businesses to stay open after dark and children to study even when the sun goes down. By providing people with a sustainable lighting source, WHI is helping families and communities return to life as they knew it before the devastation. Luci lights are designed by MPOWERD Inc., a company that works with NGO’s like WHI to bring access to reliable electricity to those who need it most, like the citizens of Puerto Rico.
Lack of (reliable) electricity makes it almost impossible for water purification plants and sanitation services to run smoothly, which threatens the safe water supply. Safe drinking water is the foundation to a healthy life, which is why it’s such a focal point for WHI. They don’t want to see children and communities dehydrated and sick for fear of drinking contaminated water. Providing 250 durable, effective Katadyn water filters gives those in Puerto Rico safety in the knowledge that the water they’re drinking through their filter will not make them sick.
Under the guiding principle “Making water drinking water”, Katadyn develops and manufactures its portable water filters, desalinators and chemical disinfectants for camping, trekking or global journeys.
‘Puerto Rico is not ready for another hurricane. They’re still digging their way out of this one.’
John Lyon, President and CEO, World Hope International
Ultimately, these critical relief supplies not only help people recover from Hurricane Maria but also prepare for the oncoming hurricane season. To aid in the recovery process in Puerto Rico and purchase supplies to directly benefit people on the ground, please visit Level Giving by clicking here.
Listen to the 22 Lightbulbs podcast with John Lyon, President and CEO World Hope International, here.