Sail Relief Team - Hurricane Maria - Damage and Response

Puerto Rico Se Levanta

December is behind us and we’re finally catching our breath after a wet, beautiful, long, fun, exhausting, rewarding trip. After leaving Inagua and skirting the coast of Hispanola, we crossed the infamous Mona Passage in flat calm with no trouble. We made our first landfall at Cabo Rojo on the western coast of Puerto Rico and then hopped along the southern coast for a few days to reach Vieques, an island municipality about 8 miles from the main island. Vieques took a direct hit from the northeast corner of Maria’s eye and the damage this community suffered is made even worse by its physical isolation from the rest of Puerto Rico. The bulk of our relief supplies were delivered here to Vieques Love, a community outreach organization that has been working on hurricane recovery in Vieques for the last four months.

After making our big delivery, we headed to Fajardo, on the northeast corner of the main island of Puerto Rico, where Relentless will be based for the next several months. We spent the holidays touring the island to get a sense of the situation on the ground and making contact with organizations already working on the recovery here.

Sail Relief Team - Hurricane Maria Damage

The people of Puerto Rico have been hit hard by this disaster but there is determination here and many good folks, both residents and outsiders, doing amazing work and giving their all to help. We’re proud to have made the journey, but more proud to be working with and helping these awesome people.


Power Struggles

The biggest problem still plaguing Puerto Rico four months after the hurricanes is lack of electricity for about half of the population. A combination of weak infrastructure, government disorganization, and logistical challenges have left many communities in the dark with no idea when the lights may come back on. This has been especially hard on people with chronic medical conditions requiring dialysis, C-PAP, nebulizers, and other electronic equipment for treatment.

On the Horizon…

We’ve started actively working to help bring solar power to remote parts of Puerto Rico and specifically on Vieques. We are very excited about some of the support we’ve already received and hopeful that we can contribute to some very important projects in hard-hit communities.

Thank you to all our supporters!


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