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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

After the Hurricanes: Recovering in Puerto Rico and Beyond

Resources for responding to the devastation caused by hurricanes such as Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, Dominica and other parts of the Caribbean

Hurricane Maria in 2017

On this page are efforts that took place after Hurricane Maria in 2017.

After the Devastation in Puerto Rico and Beyond


How to support people in Puerto Rico & throughout the Caribbean
after the Devastating Hurricane

The following list was created via recommendations by members of the UMass and Western Massachusetts Caribbean communities, including many Boricuas (Puertoricans). Please contact librarian Isabel Espinal with any suggestions or corrections.


Dominica Hurricane Maria Relief Fund

Established by the Government of Dominica: “To direct assistance where it is most needed, we have established the Dominica Hurricane Maria Relief Fund. It is too soon to have an exact estimate of the damage caused by the hurricane, but there is strong reason to believe that billions of dollars have been lost overnight. This website stands as our plea for help, and as the first stage of a relief mission that will take days, months, and years to complete.”

Puerto Rico

Western MA Puerto Rico Relief Fund
An account has been established at Freedom Credit Union "where people can safely donate to Hurricane Maria relief efforts in Puerto Rico. All of the money collected will go to organizations working directly with victims of the hurricane. 'Freedom’s Board of Directors recognizes the heartbreaking situation in Puerto Rico and we will be matching donations to the fund, up to $5,000,' said Glenn Welch, President and CEO of Freedom." Donate cash at any Freedom Credit Union branch location. Account: “Puerto Rico Relief Fund,” donate online via PayPal, or make your check payable to “Western MA Puerto Rico Relief Fund” and mail your donation to:

Attn:  Edward Nuñez
Western MA Puerto Rico Relief Fund
c/o Freedom Credit Union
P.O. Box 3009 
Springfield, MA 01101-3009

Help Puerto Rico: A List of Trusted Organizations Offering Aid

“I am aware that there are many organizations that will use this catastrophic event to profit with aid scams, and others are too corrupt to manage the donation funds. This is why I’ve been doing some research on organizations where I know the people that work there or know someone trustworthy that has a direct contact with them. This list will keep being updated as I hear what are the most immediate needs on the island. I will also check accountability by asking residents of Puerto Rico, which one of these organizations are working and which are not.”

Defend Puerto Rico Action Alerts

Defend PR is a multimedia project designed to document and celebrate Puerto Rican creativity, resilience, and resistance. Recognizing the complex and dynamic landscapes that comprise Puerto Rican daily life and struggle, Defend PR seeks to deepen connections between Puerto Ricans on the island and throughout the diaspora, in the hopes of nurturing greater solidarity, collaboration, and kinship.

Donate to Defend Puerto Rico

The most vulnerable communities likely to be severely affected and face the longest road to recovery are often our low-income communities of color. They often face the worst destruction and slowest recovery with fewer resources, and are often forgotten by reconstruction efforts, and underserved by insurance companies. Partnering with two local organizations in Puerto Rico, Nuestra Escuela and Taller Salud, both focusing relief efforts for Loiza and other various low-income communities.

The Hurricane Maria Community Relief & Recovery Fund

Housed at the Center for Popular Democracy (CPD). One hundred percent of monies raised will be used to support immediate relief, recovery, and equitable rebuilding in Puerto Rico for the communities hit hardest by the storm. The Fund is governed by organizations like Puerto Rico-based Taller Salud and other local, grassroots organizations. The Fund will support organizations working with these hardest hit communities in Puerto Rico.

Scholars for Puerto Rico

"We are scholars committed to supporting Puerto Rico relief and recovery efforts in the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Hurricanes Irma and Maria thoroughly devastated the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico. We join others who are increasing awareness of the humanitarian and environmental crisis in Puerto Rico and raising funds. All funds raised by Scholars for Puerto Rico will be donated to three community-based organizations who are integral to both immediate and long-term sustainable recovery in Puerto Rico." 

Multi area

ALA Disaster Relief Fund to support Caribbean islands, Mexico, Puerto Rico, library rebuilding efforts

The American Library Association will accept donations to support library relief efforts in the Caribbean islands, Mexico and Puerto Rico at Additional funds established for Florida and Texas libraries.

The Caribbean Disaster Relief and Recovery Alliance (CDRRA)

"Developed as the byproduct of an overwhelming outpouring of support and a call to action to respond to the widespread destruction caused by Hurricane Irma in the Caribbean." Mission: Provide timely relief assistance as well as long-term recovery support to families and communities in the Caribbean region through a coordinated effort in partnership with other businesses, community organizations, non-profits and professionals.  

Catholic Relief Services

Donations will help to provide shelter, water, tarps, tents, kitchen kits and other supplies to families affected by the storm. This service is provided to the community regardless of religion, social or economic background. 100% of funds raised are going to those affected. If you would like to contribute to the recovery efforts, you may text CCUSADISASTER to 71777 or visit to donate.

People to People Project: Tutorial on how to make a Boricua Care Package