On September 16, 2017, hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico and things have not been the same. One hurricane has single-handedly transported an entire island and its 4 million inhabitants more than 50 years to the past. Everyday things like electricity, internet access, phones, and running water are now luxuries.
Maria is the tenth most powerful hurricane ever recorded. Like hurricane Irma, Maria was a category 5+ hurricane. Category 5+ because their wind speeds exceeded the current 5 category scale system.
Development on Mayan has taken a big hit too. Hit no access to broadband internet or electricity, development is at a standstill for the moment. So is the support work. Due to these situations, no new support services are available until further notice.
Power generation in the island reached a frail 30% but power distribution is still only at 5%. Bureaucracy, inefficiency and corruption, at the government, the private and voluntary sectors have been without precedent. Their work, virtually ineffective in the overall recovery of the island.
Exodus has only compounded the seriousness of the situation. At 99K inhabitants per year, exodus was already a big problem. After hurricane Maria more than 300K residents have abandoned the island, most have no plan to return.
The most optimistic estimates put the total infrastructure recovery at 2 years. That’s two more hurricanes seasons that could destroy all work already done by then. Total economic recovery is not expected to happen for at least 10 years. This new economic problem added to the fact that the island was already bankrupt before the hurricane. For many of us, exodus is not an option and this is the scenario of the place where we must continue living our lives.
Help is desperately needed. I’ve set up an Amazon wishlist with the items that are most urgent: MREs (Meal-Ready-to-Eat), propane and butane gas canisters, solar power supplies, batteries, communication radios and accessories, first aid supplies. The list is available at: https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/33W8QTQ0RY5ZL/ref=nav_wishlist_lists_1
You can also send your donations via PayPal at: https://www.paypal.me/RobertoRosario
The road to recovery is long and filled with many unknowns. Your help goes a long way to make life under the current situation more bearable and brings the goal of recovery much closer to reality.