Solar Street Lights Vieques, PR

On September 20th, 2017 (less than two weeks after Hurricane Irma hit the small island off Puerto Rico), Hurricane Maria pummelled Vieques with sustained winds of 155 mph winds making it the third strongest storm to hit landfall in the US. The resort town of Esperanza was the worst hit. 

Now more than six week later, they still struggle with intermittent water supply, no power, limited communication, mass destruction, and worst of all no help and isolation. Much aide has gone to the mainland of Puerto Rico, but none has trickled down to the island of Vieques, also a US territory just 7 miles from San Juan.  The only US aide they have seen is military rations and delivery of a few SAT phones for communication out.

The hard-working people  of Vieques, all too used to  being the neglected island of Puerto Rico, are facing this destruction with their usual courage and tenacity.  They are working alone to rebuild their homes, businesses and lives. Kurt and Kelly Soukup, owner of  Bananas Restaurant on Vieques, are working with other local business owners, who despite losing everything, have decided to stay to help the people of Vieques rebuild. 

The island has no power at all and they are being told that the electricity will not be restored for at least six months. Darkness could last years. 

Vieques needs our help.  The island has seen negligable help from the government and no NGO's are operating there. The islanders live or die on the tourism business. They have asked for funds to be raised for solar street lights for several of the larger streets in Esperanza, the primary tourist location across from Mosquito Bay.

We would like to raise funds for 35 100 watt LED industrial grade solar powered street lights which could sustain the hurricane force winds that hit the island annually. The street lights would provide safety, normalcy, and consistent lighting to the area which employs the greatest number of residents. 

Other than the Go-Fund-Me processing fees, 100% of your donation will go to the purchase of solar street lights and shipping to get them there. Volunteers (family members of islanders) will handle the logistics of shipping and local business will pay for the cost of installing the lights. 

Residents of Vieques know it will take years to rebuild, this is a good step forward to being able to return to their jobs and being self-sufficient again. Please help them to help themselves overcome the worst destruction in a century. They are living in a what looks like a war zone, isolated, alone, neglected. Don't let the news cycle move on and forget these Americans, working so hard to recover.
  • Mary Keglovits Mathieu 
    • $50 
    • 45 mos
  • Joseph Allegro 
    • $250 
    • 45 mos
  • Rachel Fruge 
    • $50 
    • 45 mos
  • Nanci Sundel 
    • $54 
    • 45 mos
  • Cherie Homa 
    • $50 
    • 45 mos
See all

Organizer

Kelly Soukup O'Neal 
Organizer
Dallas, TX
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