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Hurricane Maria Rebuild Effort PR

$17,250 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 149 people in 16 months
Created September 20, 2017
Dear family, friends, and “friends of friends,” 

My name is Michael Basile. My wife, Vicky, and I live in Puerto Rico with our 6 month old twin girls.  We moved to our beautiful island 3 years ago and we’ve fallen in love with Puerto Rico.  As you know, Hurricane Maria has decimated most of the island – as it was the most powerful storm to hit the island in over 100 years.

It’s absolutely heartbreaking to see these images on TV and on Facebook.  We have so many friends on the island that will need our support.  This hurricane completely devastated our community and the neighboring towns.  The early reports are the flood surge is 15-20ft (in some areas 30-40ft) higher than the previous record high watermark in Puerto Rico.  And many of the stores have been cleaned out last week in response to Hurricane Irma and Puerto Rico's humanitarian efforts to their neighboring islands. 

Our goal here is to help by reaching out to our network for support.  We need your help.   We will be raising funds to be distributed directly to those neighbors of ours in desperate need of our help.   Please consider to donate to this fund, or to any of the other funds that have been set up.   

I completely understand if you feel hesitant or skeptical to donate because you are not sure that the resources will be allocated appropriately.  If I were in your shoes, I might feel the same way.  But you have our word – every dollar raised will go directly to people in need and the rebuilding effort.   We will be working with faith communities and trusted leaders in our towns to distribute responsibly (in fact, we will document the effort and give you updates on how you’ve helped). 

I don’t know how else to say this, but we feel called to do this.  Puerto Rico has been so good to us and this is our turn to “love back.”  We need your help.  Please, please, please join the effort and give, share, tweet, like and retweet!

If you have any questions, please reach out:
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/michaelcbasile

God bless you,
Mike and Vicky Basile (and Meadow and Sia)

PS - GoFundMe has asked us to be specific on how the funds will be used.  Our resources will be primarily invested toward the rebuild effort.  Many people have stepped up and are doing amazing things to help their neighbors in need.  Two in particular are Jonathan Ocasio and Bruce Clark.  They are very well organized and have earned a great reputation to be effective stewards of resources.  

Recipients:
Jonathan Ocasio at Mar Azul
website:  http://www.marazul.church/

Bruce Clark at Trinity PR
website: http://trinitypr.org/

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Update 2
Posted by Michael Basile
9 months ago
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Here are a few more videos to take a look at...
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Update 1
Posted by Michael Basile
9 months ago
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Dear Friends,

As promised, we wanted to circle back with you to provide some footage and updates on the resources we raised for the people of Puerto Rico through your generosity. Thank you for your patience with us as we have transitioned as a family through 5 states before we were able to return to PR after several months. As many of you may know, the recovery process in Puerto Rico has taken a long time and is in between phases. When we evacuated Puerto Rico, our twins were 5 months old. When we finally returned, they were 9 months. Even as we write this update, the entire country is in an electrical black out for the next 36 hours. We wanted to make sure the funds we raised made a direct connection with the people who needed help. Our very good friend Jonathon Ocasio and his team of volunteers created Help Centers /"Centros de Ayuda" through his faith community known as Mar Azul. They created a collaboration of leaders and organizations to provide a wide network of support through their teams and resources. Together they were able to enter and impact 78% of the towns in Puerto Rico. Here is a collection of videos from their work which you helped support through your generosity.

There are many phases of recovery and these videos show the disaster relief response. Another phase of the recovery response is the "rebuilding" phase. We are continuing to partner with Jonathon and his team at Mar Azul, as well as our own faith community, La Travesia. This vision is long-term and can take many years. As you will see from the videos, the extent of the damage in these areas is immense and will require a lot of various components which are still in short supply in PR.

Additionally we have organized several humanitarian trips, including a group from Harvard who spent their Spring Break serving the people of PR, and a team of 30+ people from a church in Boston. We were also able to raise $2k from Concord-Carlisle High School, the school Michael taught right out of college.

We are working on matching gifts and other fundraisers for the second phase of the recovery process. We thank each of you for your donations and encouragement/support for Puerto Rico and our family. As the next hurricane season approaches, please keep the island in your prayers. Thanks again for your patience with us in our update as we transitioned to the new normal in PR with our girls, who we are happy to announce have just turned one!

With love,
The Basile's
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$17,250 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 149 people in 16 months
Created September 20, 2017
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