Here's what you can do in Central Florida to help hurricane victims in Puerto Rico


After Hurricane Maria pummeled Puerto Rico, members of the Central Florida diaspora have come together to support the 3.4 million people who live on the U.S. territory.

Currently, the entire island is without power and could remain that way for four to six months, according to San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz. The National Weather Service is also warning of an increased risk of flash floods in Puerto Rico and that a dam is currently failing, even as Hurricane Maria has already moved on its path through the Caribbean.

In Central Florida, Coordinadora de Apoyo, Solidaridad y Ayuda, also known as CASA, has set up several places across Central Florida where people can donate items, including:

- Acacia El Centro Borinqueño, 1865 N. Econlockhatchee Trail, Orlando
- Harbor Community Bank, 2320 S. Orange Ave., Orlando
- Harbor Community Bank, 11681 S. Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando
- Harbor Community Bank, 430 N. Semoran Blvd., Orlando
- Harbor Community Bank, 2591 Simpson Road, Kissimmee
- Harbor Community Bank, 100 Park Place Blvd., Kissimmee
- Harbor Community Bank, 420 E. Altamonte Drive, Altamonte Springs
- Harbor Community Bank, 251 W. First St., Sanford
- Rigo Tile, 770 E. Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway, Kissimmee

You can make monetary donations at Harbor Community Bank made out to CASA and drop off the following supplies: Batteries; bottled water; pajamas for all ages; towels; hygiene items, including soap, deodorant, tooth paste, tooth brush, menstrual pads, adult diapers; baby wipes, diapers and formula; pet food; first-aid kits and medicine; sleeping bags, cots, blankets, tents and canopies; construction materials; and cooking pots, cups and cutlery. CASA is also holding a blood drive at El Centro Borinqueño for hurricane victims on Saturday, Sept. 23, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. and again on Sunday, Sept. 24, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

There's also a number of national and Puerto Rican charities accepting donations for hurricane victims, including the Hispanic Federation, ConPRmetidos and Unidos por Puerto Rico. For more organizations, check out these lists compiled by the New York Times and Remezcla.

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