Save The Island Maritza

My name is Maritza Gonzalez-Norton and I live in Houston,  TX.  I am a native New Yorker and spend a lot of time in NYC, as my job requires it!

I was in Houston when Hurricane  Harvey made landfall.  I was fortunate that my home did not suffer damage.  However, many were not as fortunate.   I immediately immersed myself in volunteering by purchasing and distributing much needed supplies to local community centers and Churches.  My friends in NY immediately and graciously made donations which allowed me to continue to bring aide and truly change lives.  I will be making a delivery tomorrow to St. John Vianney Food Pantry. 

I am now facing the same,  if not worse challenges on the beautiful Island of Puerto Rico.  As Hurricane Maria created havoc on the Island and caused catastrophic devastation  throughout the Island.  Both my parents are from Puerto Rico and most of my relatives, as well as some friends reside on the Island.  

I lost my dad in a Mudslide in 1985 in Ponce, PR.  I witnessed the devastation those torrential rains caused in this small part of Ponce, as I went to PR, rolled up my sleeves and searched alongside the military personnel in hopes I would find my dad and other relatives. Unfortunately, I never found my dad, but we did recover my cousin's body. Please know many lives were lost as a result of just ongoing rain.  I could only imagine the magnitutde of destruction and loss of life  Hurricane Maria has caused on the Island.  The government was quick to respond and rebuild in Ponce, unlike the bureaucracy  & red tape the Isand has been encountering which has had a direct impact on preventable deaths. It is shameful and despicable. 

I am aware some relatives  are well and just doing their best to make it through each day, some have lost everything and others are still unaccounted, as well as numerous friends we are also waiting to know if they are ok or at the very least, alive.  

I am writing to all to request any donation to afford me the opportunity to purchase and distribute the necessary supplies, as the people of Puerto Rico are in dire need.  Your donation would also allow me to bring folks home to their relatives or friends on the mainland.  Especially, the very ill. 

My first concern is to get  water and food to my family and the people on the Island.  I am currently working on finding the not just a warehouse, as I know there are  numerous in San Juan, but a trucking company to get the supplies to the remote parts of the Island. 

 I beg you to help me, help them!  I would be eternally thankful and grateful for any/all donations and know that your donation would have a direct impact on as many people as I can help.  

I have always lived to give back to the community and seeing the difference I made in Houston and will continue to make in Houston, has been a life changing experience.  

I am confident I can make a difference in Puerto Rico, and look forward to helping as many people as possible, but I can not do alone, I truly need your help!!!

The photo on this site is of my mom (in the middle, who suffers from Dementia)  and 2 aunts, one, which we lost in between Hurricane Irma and Maria:-(  The photo was taken last year, on La Lancha de Catano,  Puerto Rico.  
The other photos were taken very recently by different family members on the Island.

Puerto Ricans are resilient and they will rebuild this beautiful paradise that 3.4 million people call home, they just need help!!

Warm Regards,


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Maritza Norton 
Houston, TX
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