As Hurricane Fiona tore through Puerto Rico in September, nearly three feet of rain fell onto communities in the south. With almost a million people lacking power and safe drinking water, Water for All sent a team to help.
Still recovering from Hurricane Maria a few years earlier, Puerto Rico was not ready to take on another hurricane when Fiona hit. Bridges and roads still under reconstruction were destroyed, and many schools, homes and churches were underwater. As the floods receded, they left behind destruction, debris, and an even more pressing problem for hundreds of thousands: lack of potable water.
The problems were fixed quickly in the urban centers in the north, where the storm was less severe. In the south, however, the infrastructure would take much longer to repair. In the meantime, entire communities were left with no safe drinking water.
Two of Vivoblu’s long-time partners—Operation Blessing and Convoy of Hope—told us they were heading there to deploy aid, including our filters. Water for All asked if they could use our help, and they responded with a resounding YES. So we answered the call.
Water for All activated a team of three to bring as many Vivoblu CORE Family Filters and 10L Bag-Paks as we could carry. In the two days we had to prepare and pack, we worked the phones from morning until night to lay the groundwork for deployment. We know from many past experiences that connections in the field—and the intel they provide—are vital to being effective in a disaster zone.
Within 48 hours we had connected with teams from United Cajun Navy, Operation Blessing, Convoy of Hope, Samaritan’s Purse, and multiple Puerto Rican organizations coordinating aid out of government and community centers. We learned where the problems were worst, which routes to take, and who to connect with on the ground.
We landed in San Juan, and immediately got to work. Over the course of the next few days, our team deployed 240 filter systems into schools, homes and centers. Our partners deployed hundreds more into communities across the South of Puerto Rico, and together we helped provide enough clean, safe drinking water for up to 8000 people in the hardest hit areas.
THANKS to generous giving from people like you, Water for All was ready and able to respond to this latest disaster, bringing water and Hope to people in great need.
Thousands received life-saving water as a result of donations to our Disaster Relief fund. Will you consider making a donation today so that we can be ready to respond to the next disaster with water and the Word of God?