Puerto Rico gov’t, private sector join forces for Irma recovery efforts
SAN JUAN – With the initial goal of raising $1 million to help those affected by Hurricane Irma, United for Puerto Rico, a telethon-like event, will be announced Oct. 1 at the Convention Center. It will include the participation of several Puerto Rican artists and support from the private sector.
“We are united here for a very special cause. We believe that together we can change trajectories and we want to set the example,” first lady Beatriz Rosselló said in La Fortaleza, where she announced the event to support Vieques, Culebra and other municipalities affected by the Category 5 hurricane.
Under the motto “Together we change trajectories!” the first lady explained that the committee–formed in about 24 hours–will be composed of the First Lady’s Office, First Bank, Bella Group, GFR Media, the Treasury Department, Empresas Fonalledas, Triple S, Coca-Cola and Banco Popular.
Treasury Secretary Raúl Maldonado said the initiative will have a finance committee made up of several firms from local and international CPAs who will volunteer so people know “exactly what their money will be spent on.”
“Rest assured that everything will be completely transparent, we will ensure that each [donation] is posted and accessed on a website so they know what is being used for,” Maldonado said, praising the efforts of the sectors that make up the group.
Although aid will be directed primarily to the island-municipalities of Vieques and Culebra, which were hit hardest by the storm, the director of the First Lady’s Office, Luis Ángel Martínez, said a percentage of the funds collected is expected to be for the neighboring islands.
“It’s time for all of us to unite as a people and continue to change that trajectory, that out of something as tragic and sad as the hurricane’s impact, we can make something positive and we can unite as a people,” the first lady added regarding the family event.
Rosselló said the objective of the event is “to paralyze the island, but this time in a positive way” with activities for children during the morning and then the telethon with the participating artists for the public to enjoy from their homes.
First Bank President Aurelio Alemán said the bank will open an account Tuesday morning (0108501910), where the public will be able to deposit donations through the ATH Móvil app.
More details of the event will be offered in the coming days.