What's the best way to help after a natural disaster?
It's a question that many of us asked last year. And it's the question that gave birth to this project.
After 2017's devastating hurricane season I set out on a journey to try to figure out the most effective way to help Harvey, Irma, and Maria's victims. As a documentary filmmaker and writer, my goal was to talk to as many people as possible and then distill what I learned down into something simple and engaging.
In my research I learned that while long term recovery projects are some of the most important and cost-effective, they only receive 5% of total funding. Many people I spoke with told me that the organizations that know their communities best are often local non-profits. Yet only 2% of funding goes to these organizations.
In February I travelled to Puerto Rico to meet with local organizations leading the long term recovery effort. That is when the idea for this project came up. Over the next month I worked with community leaders, non-profits, and activists to launch this project.
This project would not have been possible without the following individuals:
Jose Juan Terrasa-Soler — Board Member, Resilient Power PR
Jan Curet — Architect, Resilient Power PR
Isabel Rullen — Executive Director, ConPRmetidos
Alma Frontera — Director of Strategic Projects, Foundation for PR
Denisse Rodríguez — Director, Colmena 66
Desirée Rodríguez — Colmena 66
Carolina Martinez — Colmena 66
Sofia Stolberg — CEO, Piloto 151
Bob Ottenhoff — CEO, Center for Disaster Philanthropy
Britt Lake — Chief Programs Officer, Global Giving
Marlena Hartz — Marketing Manager
Saloni Doshi — Co-CEO, EcoEnclose