Early Tuesday, a 6.4-magnitude earthquake struck Puerto Rico, followed by a series of strong aftershocks. The quake killed one man; at least eight other people are injured, and several buildings collapsed.
Here’s how you can help :
Dine out, for a cause
There are a few pop-up dinners at South Philly Barbacoa to raise cash for recovery efforts. Gallo Negro chef Maria Mercedes Grubb, who is from San Juan, Puerto Rico, is cooking. The money raised will go to Serve PR. The dinners are on January 13 and 14 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.. No reservations necessary; the dinners are a la carte, casual, and BYO. 1140 S. 9th St.
Help make emergency backpacks
Philly Boricua, Providence Center and Make the Road Pennsylvania are coordinating a relief drive for people in the Southwestern municipalities in Puerto Rico who were affected by the earthquake, including the hundreds who have been sleeping in shelters and parks because their homes were damaged. The groups are working with Water for Puerto Rico, a non-government organization working in Guánica and other affected areas. The Philly groups are collecting supplies for emergency backpacks.
Here’s what they need: backpacks, toilet paper rolls, face and hand towels, baby wipes, tampons and sanitary pads, diapers, saltines and crackers, protein or granola bars, water filtration devices, whistles, alkaline batteries, flashlights, sharpie markers, small notepads, compact travel blankets, warm weather sleeping bags, first aid kits, Ziploc bags, ropes, extension cords, blue tarps, duct tape, canopy tents, cabin tents.
How to donate: Providence Center will be collecting supplies from Monday to Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at 2557 N. 5th St. Make the Road Pennsylvania will be collecting supplies from Monday to Friday from noon to 8:00 p.m. at 7221 Rising Sun Ave. The group also has an Amazon wishlist for those who are unable to drop off donations in person.
Going to Puerto Rico soon?
Here’s what you can bring. Suministros Puerto Rico is a site (in Spanish) that identifies what’s needed by different camps on the island. This helps allocate donations and resources to the places that need them most (so they go where they’re needed and don’t have to be redistributed). The site is updated by community leaders.
Groups accepting monetary donations
Here are some groups involved in major relief efforts that welcome donations:
Hispanic Federation Unidos program. After Hurricane Maria, the Hispanic Federation launched the Unidos program for disaster relief, reaching 78 Puerto Rican municipalities by transporting first responders and providing food and water. The group is one of the biggest contributors to ongoing relief efforts in Puerto Rico, and has a four-star rating from Charity Navigator.
World Central Kitchen. Run by Chef José Andrés, WCF prepares meals for people affected by disasters, and is gearing up to support people in Puerto Rico following the earthquake.
American Red Cross. The Red Cross is assessing needs to help people affected by the earthquake. The group collects donations for disaster relief that go into a central pool for all disasters. The group was active in recovery efforts after Hurricane Maria by installing solar networks for power, giving people access to clean water, and supporting local community-health organizations.
Mercy Corps has had a team in Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria in 2017. The group will be distributing solar lanterns with USB chargers, as well as emergency cash to affected families. The group also supports local community centers to help them better prepare for disasters by equipping them with solar panels, community gardens, emergency kits and disaster preparedness training. You can read more about Mercy Corps on Charity Navigator.
Puerto Rico Rise Up is providing emotional support to people affected by the family, and distributing aid to affected communities.
The Salvation Army is providing supplies and hot meals to both responders and people affected by the disaster, and has opened recovery centers where people can charge their cell phones and get emotional and spiritual support. Three members of the Philadelphia chapter are part of the group’s efforts in Puerto Rico.
For other groups accepting donations, here’s a list from the group Ciencia Puerto Rico.
Be careful when donating. According to the Federal Trade Commission, disasters can be an opportunity for scammers who take advantage of crowdfunding sites. If you suspect fraud, report it to the site and the National Center for Disaster Fraud.
This list will be updated as we learn about Philadelphia efforts to help the recovery. Do you know about a group organizing efforts to help people in Puerto Rico after the earthquake? Email us.
Staff writers Grace Dickinson and Jesenia De Moya Correa contributed to this article.