Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief
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Program Summary

In the fall of 2017, Hurricane Irma landed in Puerto Rico with the strongest winds the island has ever seen. Not long after, Hurricane Maria’s 155 mph ferocious winds struck the island, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. “It is the worst natural disaster on record in Puerto Rico and [several] months later, the island still does not have power and potable water in many areas. As always, our team worked with local partners to carefully assess the damage and identify communities with the greatest need for help,” said Erik Dyson, C.E.O. of All Hands and Hearts.

Our team is currently operating in Yabucoa, Barranquitas and Toa Baja. Hurricane Maria first made landfall over the municipality of Yabucoa, affecting the 37,000 residents who call it home. This area bore the strongest brunt of the storm, where hundreds of homes are still today in need of basic roof repairs. The mountain municipality of Barranquitas, the interior of the island, was also devastated by the storm and became nearly inaccessible for weeks due to landslides. The roughly 30,000 residents in this area continue to see a great need for roofing repair and mold sanitation. Moreover, Toa Baja suffered not only flooding from the hurricane itself, but the subsequent release of dams, resulting in flood waters over 10 feet high.

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Program Work

Thanks to critical support from partners, donors, local community, and volunteers from around the world, we have been able to run impactful programs in Puerto Rico since January 2018. Our work in Yabucoa and neighboring Humacao includes mucking and gutting, mold sanitation, roof repair and critical home repairs. We are also focusing on community spaces in need of clean up/repair and will be alongside the community on the long road to recovery. Our work in Barranquitas originally included mucking/gutting and debris removal, but has shifted focus to meet the overwhelming need for resilient roofing rebuilds and mold sanitation. Our work in Toa Baja continues to consist of sanitation and debris removal, in addition to meeting the need for concrete roof repairs.

Group of Volunteers in US Virgin Islands USVI St. Thomas St. John

Repairing and rebuilding roofs

After inquiring with the community in Barranquitas, our team learned that a considerable number of homes sustained roof damage. When working on roofs, we abide by Resilient Roofing Standards to ensure any roof that we repair is both up to code, as well as sustainable enough to withstand another hurricane of 150MPH or less.

Group of Volunteers in US Virgin Islands USVI St. Thomas St. John

Repairing and rebuilding roofs

After inquiring with the community in Barranquitas, our team learned that a considerable number of homes sustained roof damage. When working on roofs, we abide by Resilient Roofing Standards to ensure any roof that we repair is both up to code, as well as sustainable enough to withstand another hurricane of 150MPH or less.

Repairing homes

Repairing homes means repairing the interior of the home and to provide the homeowners with a finished place to live. Repairs are carried out following resiliency guidelines and may include installing drywall, insulation, painting, flooring, and more.

Male Volunteer in Puerto Rico
Male Volunteer in Puerto Rico

Repairing homes

Repairing homes means repairing the interior of the home and to provide the homeowners with a finished place to live. Repairs are carried out following resiliency guidelines and may include installing drywall, insulation, painting, flooring, and more.

Repairing community infrastructure

Community infrastructure outside of the home or schools may still be an important element of daily life in an area after natural disasters. An example of this is our work in Yabucoa, where we partnered with Travelers Insurance to repair and restore the famous Mendez baseball complex which sustained major damage following Hurricane Maria.

Repairing community infrastructure

Community infrastructure outside of the home or schools may still be an important element of daily life in an area after natural disasters. An example of this is our work in Yabucoa, where we partnered with Travelers Insurance to repair and restore the famous Mendez baseball complex which sustained major damage following Hurricane Maria.

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A dry home

All Hands and Hearts volunteers help to fix the roof for Juan Ignacio Capilla [79] and his mother Francisca [93] after Hurricane Maria.

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