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In early May, we completed our first wave of fundraising and distribution of “despensas,” the packages of food and critical supplies that went out to 1,264 families. The aid from the state and local government picked up, and we exhausted our funding, so our small team decided to pause to see what the next need would be.
Tropical Storm Cristobal brought that need on, suddenly and unexpectedly. Dropping the most rain in modern Yucatan history, Cristobal’s flooding drove hundreds of local people from their homes into shelters.
Area expats and snowbirds stepped up to help even before we asked; they knew Progreso Relief had infrastructure in place to get help where it was most needed quickly. In less than 24 hours, more than US$3,000 came in; in the first afternoon we arranged for a fast dinner of sandwiches to be delivered to the shelters. The next morning, more sandwiches were delivered for lunch and pizzas to feed 200 people for dinner. All of these services were provided by local, independent businesses.
It is now Sunday, June 7. People are leaving the shelters and going home. Progreso Relief is paying for despensas that they can take with them. However, there is a need for drying those homes out, disinfecting and spraying for mosquitoes. We are talking with the Ayuntamiento de Progreso on the best way we can help. Of course, the more donations we receive the more we can help! The fastest, easiest way is through Paypal; just go to https://paypal.me/ProgresoRelief and make whatever donation you can.
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