Philanthropic Roundtable Ignites the Candle of Hope for Disaster Torn Puerto Rico Survivors

[Forty-eight organizations meet to discuss issues and challenges and to develop a plan to help Puerto Rico disaster recovery survivors.]
Forty-eight organizations meet to discuss issues and challenges and to develop a plan to help Puerto Rico disaster recovery survivors.

By Efrain Maldonado

HUD's Puerto Rico Office hosted the first forum of philanthropy for the recovery of Puerto Rico on December 6th focused on bringing together forty-eight organizations and agencies leadership to address the needs of disaster torn Puerto Rico survivors. Region IV Adminstrator Denise Cleveland-Leggett actively lead the discussions along with HUD Puerto Rico Field Office Director Efrain Maldonado focusing on helping to define the challenges and issues, as well as, working to develop a plan to best address them at this roundtable and going forward.

"The commitment of our partners in Puerto Rico to participate in this very focused philanthropic roundtable to help address the issues facing disaster recovery survivors is very encouraging," said Cleveland Leggett. "We have accomplished something very special and unique with this initial roundtable and I recognize that the key will be to ensure that we continue to communicate, develop a workable recovery plan and develop synergies of effort moving forward as we work together to help Puerto Rico recover."

Several speakers managed to effectively communicate the need to align efforts, leverage federal resources and create collaborative alliances that put into action a collective plan that translates into activities to fully recover from the impact of Hurricanes Irma and MarĂ­a.

After the speakers shared their recovery priorities, strategic activities, and explored common interests, interactive sessions were held for the purpose of discovering the capabilities of each organization in terms of economic development, community input/planning, housing/ relocation, and infrastructure.

Most of the participants agreed on concentrating on common initiatives instead of relying on scattered ones, involving the community at various levels, understanding community gaps and the need to map all public and private construction efforts.


Content Archived: January 28, 2020