In September 2017, Puerto Rico suffered two major hurricanes within weeks: Irma and Maria. While both were exceedingly destructive, Hurricane Maria was classified as a Category 5 and the worst on record for Puerto Rico in nearly 100 years. In the aftermath, millions of individuals and families were, and still are, left without homes, electricity and shelter.
As part of its Disaster Relief Collaborative Fund, InFaith Community Foundation granted $100,000 to Lutheran Social Services (LSS) of Puerto Rico to aid recovery in the community. This was made possible thanks to the generosity of InFaith’s donors. LSS of Puerto Rico believes “when the dust settles, and the headlines change, we stay to provide ongoing assistance to those in need.”
The intention of this grant was to not only help Puerto Rican citizens rebuild physically, but also help them rebuild spiritually and prepare themselves to address future disaster response needs. In addition to providing materials for the reconstruction of survivors’ homes, this grant supports outreach to vulnerable and transient populations that are often missed by government relief programs such as children, university students, the deaf community, the elderly and their caretakers.
“We believe every response needs to be rooted in the community,” said Rev. David Guadalupe, CEO of LSS of Puerto Rico. “We work to accompany the community from immediate relief through long-term recovery.”
InFaith believes supporting LSS and its recovery efforts helps change lives in our shared community.
Kim Borton, InFaith Director of Grants and Donor Services, shares, “The power of InFaith’s Disaster Relief Fund is the rebuilding of community services for the long-term. Long after initial response is where InFaith provides support – germane to strengthening community resiliency. LSS is a catalyst and convener and their work will indefinitely affect the lives of Puerto Rican children and families.”
InFaith’s Disaster Relief Collaborative Fund is made possible by donors who pool their charitable gifts with those of other generous donors to achieve a greater effect on an issue or field of interest. Most recently, InFaith donors have taken action to provide relief to Hurricane Dorian, which made landfall as a Category 5 hurricane in the Bahamas on Sunday, Sept. 1.
Through InFaith, donors are able to request a grant from their donor advised fund or support InFaith’s disaster relief fund. To learn more, visit infaithfound.org/disaster-relief.