They’ve got the goods, now all they need is a plane or ship!
Dozens of people in and around the Puerto Rican community in the D.C. metro area have gathered supplies to help people in need, but they need help getting the goods south.
In addition to that military help, there are also civilian donations packed inside a Chantilly, Va. warehouse. In the back of the warehouse sits at least 13 pallets of water and pampers, wrapped, weighed and ready to go.
There is also a second location, another donated space were volunteers were sorting out goods.
"You see your hometown completely destroyed, flooding and houses with roofs torn off and I couldn't just sit home and not do anything,” said Melanie Morales, as she taped a box.
This all started with various Puerto Ricans in the D.C. area wanting to help. Through social media, it blossomed into a massive grassroots effort with even police chipping-in.
The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office posted a video to Twitter showing a collection event recently held for victims on the Island.
In the office space, a man donated a bag of clothes.
“EPA!” shouted the team of volunteers. Still, in this excitement, there’s also grief.
“It's a whole bunch of frustration because it's a weird, it's a weird mix of feelings because we got all of this here, and it's not where it should be,” said volunteer, Eduardo Conde.
The problem is that they can't find an organization with the capacity to get all of the needed goods to Puerto Rico. Though the group did manage to send one load.
The Humane Society donated some space on a plane that went out.
"Somehow we made the contact,” said Conde.
Now under the name Unidos por Puerto Rico DMV, they're desperately trying to do it again.
"Right now, we need to get this over there. Because they're people who are desperate, they're people who are dying,” Conde said with his voice shaking.
Even though the group is looking for transportation, they are still collecting goods. The group's Facebook page reads:
Collection Center for Disaster Relief in Puerto Rico. We are located at 14320 Sullyfield Circle, Chantilly, VA 20151. You can reach us at 571-417-1048.We are accepting donations of all kinds. We are sending various shipments in coordination with PRFAA and local business that are gonna reach Puerto Rico very soon. Thank You All for the amazing support shown, even if you can't donate products if you can come and give us a hand, JOIN us!
Just look for the Puerto Rican flags!