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WNY steps up to help Puerto Rico after devastating earthquakes

Posted at 6:19 PM, Jan 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-17 18:19:16-05

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The island of Puerto Rico is in desperate need of donations after a series of earthquakes, and Western New York's Latino community is mobilizing to help those affected.

The Hispanic Heritage Council has established an Earthquake Relief Fund. They need new and gently used household supplie, including kitchen items and linens.

Clothing, coats, boots and personal care products are also needed as well as food.

Casimiro Rodriquez, the president of the Hispanic Heritage Council, is in Puerto Rico visiting and assessing some of the hardest hit areas.

"I was there around 1:30, we felt the tremor. It was a 3.9 tremor, and these folks they're so resilient but the state of mind, the fear, the anxiety...they're scared that the earthquake is going to be more than the tremors, they're in fear there's be a major one," he said.

The earthquakes in Puerto Rico began on December 28, 2019 and were followed by hundreds of smaller earthquakes and aftershocks.

A 6.4 magnitude earthquake hit on January 7 leaving residents without power or water.

The group provided disaster relief to Puerto Rico in 2017 after Hurricane Maria, as well as emergency assistance to more than 1,200 hurricane survivors.