Please Help Feed My Family

I'm not the type to tell personal information with people I'm not close to, so sharing my family’s current circumstances across an online fundraising platform like this is slightly terrifying. I've struggled for weeks contemplating if this why the right decision, however I’ve come to the realization that my discomfort from being vulnerable is so small compared to the distress my family, and so many others in Puerto Rico, are currently experiencing. The hurricanes may have passed but their destruction is overtly present. People are in crisis. They're hungry and struggling to survive, and I feel an unwavering obligation to help in any way that I can.

As many of you know, I come from a tight knit family that calls Cidra, Puerto Rico home. Out of my two brothers and two sisters, I’m the only one living in the States. Even though the effects of Hurricane Harvey were much closer in proximity, Irma and Maria hit much closer to home.

Just a week before Hurricane Irma (destroyed) Puerto Rico my sister Betsy was diagnosed with a brain tumor. My family was determined to rally around her and her two young children, but once Irma destroyed our community, it was difficult to stay optimistic.

I traveled to Cidra with converters to fill the need for power, but unfortunately the relief was short lived once Maria wreaked havoc. Flash flooding and winds greater than 150 miles per hour destroyed my brother Daniel’s home. My sister Liz, to this day, is completely disconnected from civilization and I worry constantly if she has found safety or shelter. The converters I transported are no longer viable power source options. Gasoline is scarce and electricity is nonexistent. Food, running water, and working bathrooms are literal luxuries at this point.

Digi, my oldest brother, has been my only lifeline to the rest of my siblings. The two, brief times we’ve been able to speak he’s shared the horrors of the catastrophe. Betsy’s brain surgery has been postponed. Hospitals don’t have the necessary equipment or resources to treat those in need of medical care. Lines are long for any sort of aid, and locals are doing what they can to help each other. Sadly, that’s not enough.

This situation is grave. I recently learned that my family that's accounted for doesn't have food. As the weeks pass the overwhelming feelings of sadness only intensify, but together I know we can make a difference. I don't have the ability to tackle this endeavor on my own. If I could, believe me I would. Please consider helping me raise money to combat this humanitarian crisis and restore my family's basic , human needs for unspoiled food, fresh water and clothing.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Please know that donations of any size, prayers, and uplifting words of encouragement are all greatly appreciated.

God bless.


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Ivy Pennington 
Rockwall, TX
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