Post by Coral Lozada
Last September Puerto Rico was rocked by Hurricane Maria, which left the island in the grasp of the second worst blackout in history. The island which has been plagued with financial woes didn’t have the infrastructure or manpower in place to deal with the ramifications of such a strong storm. Much like how Hurricane Harvey brought out the best of people in Texas, Maria saw an out and in pouring of community support for Puerto Rico. Families and cultural groups across the US rallied and collected much needed items such as batteries for the people on the island.
This is all putting it mildly; the aftermath of Maria has brought on a lot of political unrest and there have been several hearings centered on how to deal with the energy grid of the island. Eight months later and rolling blackouts still occur island wide, coastal cities have slowly gotten back to business, but the center of the island is still without power. Organizations like SACNAS have answered the continuing need for help in diverse ways; fundraising, battery drives, and even sending volunteers in to help with recovery efforts.
Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi’s SACNAS chapter aided several communities near Toa Baja through their battery drive donations. The donations were collected during November and December 2017. The batteries where given to the local Girl Scout Chapter who then worked with local entities that provide emotional support to the families that have lost everything due to the flooding. SACNAS-TAMUCC along with the help of the Harte Research Institute, the College of Science and Engineering, and various donations by TAMUCC students was able to send 20 packages of C batteries along with 16 packages of D batteries.
Thanks to all who helped support this cause!