Puerto Rico was struck by the most destructive hurricane in a century leaving the island without power, water and telecommunications. Thousands lost their homes. Since then, the City of Orlando has been actively helping and supporting public agencies and organizations to help Puerto Rico and new families arriving to the Orlando region, some efforts include:
Cooperating with the Government of Puerto Rico to promote the two drop-off locations established in Central Florida for residents to donate emergency supplies to Puerto Rico. This initiative has been a collaborative effort between the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration (PRFAA), United for Puerto Rico initiative and CASA initiative. The PRFAA location in Kissimmee is still accepting donations.
On September 30, Mayor Dyer visited the Orlando drop off location to donate items and meet with Puerto Rican and Hispanic community leaders who have worked tirelessly to help and support those affected in Puerto Rico by Hurricane Maria.
Promoting the United for Puerto Rico, an initiative brought forth by the First Lady of Puerto Rico, Beatriz Rossello, in collaboration with the private sector, with the purpose of providing aid and cash donations to Hurricane Maria’s victims, as well as the American Red Cross and the Heart of Florida United Way.
Partnering with the state and local government promoting and participating at the Disaster Relief Center (DRC) in the Orlando International Airport (OIA) to help those seeking refuge in the state, including:
- The Hispanic Office for Local Assistance (HOLA) has partnered with the state and other agencies to provide bilingual services to Puerto Rican newcomers about services and resources provided by City/HOLA, state and local public agencies and philanthropic organizations, such as the American Red Cross and United Way.
- DRC is located in the Terminal A – Level 1 – Ground Transportation at the Orlando International Airport
- DRC hours of operations are from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
- DRC will continue operating until November 6.
HOLA contact information:
Information Hotline: 407.246.4310
Address: 595 North Primrose Drive Orlando, FL 32803
City Facebook (Spanish): Facebook.com/ciudaddeorlando
Government of Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration (PRFAA)
15 S. Orlando Avenue
Kissimmee, FL 34741
Hours: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
General Information & Assistance
To Make Donations and Volunteer
FEMA assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the recent hurricanes. Click here to download flyer.
FEMA’s Intergovernmental Affairs Division
If you suspect fraud, contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud’s hotline at 1.866.720.5721, or email the organization at email@example.com. You can also report fraud to the Federal Trade Commission at ftccomplaintassistant.gov. Learn more about he National Center for Disaster Fraud at justice.gov/disaster-fraud.
Osceola County/Kissimmee Assistance Center
The center assists people arriving in Central Florida from the hurricane-ravaged islands of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Among the agencies will provide services include Osceola County Human Services, Osceola County School District, the county’s Federally Qualified Health Center, the Osceola Council On Aging, Community Vision and Park Place Behavioral Health Care and more.
Open: 7 days a week
Hours: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Place: Osceola County Extension Services
Address: 1921 Kissimmee Valley Lane Kissimmee, FL 34744
Assistance Hotline for those relocating to the area because of Hurricane Maria:
Hours: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. / Wednesday, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Phone: 1.866.964.6146 or TTY: 1.800.325.0778
Orlando Office (Orange County)
5520 Gatlin Avenue
Orlando, FL 32812
Kissimmee Office (Osceola County)
1201 E. Oak Street
Kissimmee, FL 34744
Lake Mary Office (Seminole County)
101 Commerce Street
Lake Mary, FL 32746
Deland Office (Volusia)
1629 S. Adelle Avenue
Deland, FL 32720
Universities from Puerto Rico in Orlando
Ana G. Mendez University System
Metro Orlando Campus
5601 S. Semoran Blvd.
Orlando, FL 32822
Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico
550 N. Econlockhatchee Trail
Orlando, FL 32825
Interamerican University of Puerto Rico
Orlando Cyber Center
13574 Village Park Drive
Orlando, FL 32837
Phone: 407.218.4164, 407.218.4163
Philanthropic, Community and Social Service Organizations
Heart of Florida United Way has established the Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief fund to assist with emergency assistance and basic needs of those affected. 100% of every dollar raised will go toward alleviating immediate storm-related needs in Puerto Rico, long-term community recovery and displacement assistance for families in Central Florida. We have been in contact with Fondos Unidos de Puerto Rico, the United Way that serves the entire island, in order to assess the immediate needs of their community.
The American Red Cross and a large team of partners continue to work around the clock to provide shelter, food and comfort to people whose lives have been turned upside down. Nearly three weeks after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the American Red Cross is working around the clock with government officials and disaster partners to help the hundreds of thousands of people on both island territories who are suffering right now.
With Orlando being the number one in-migration point for people from Puerto Rico, Central Florida Foundation realizes the effects of the storm and damages to infrastructure on our local community. The purpose of the Together for Puerto
Rico: A Hurricane Recovery Fund is to provide a way for our community to respond now to support the medium to long term recovery and rebuilding efforts that face the government and nonprofits in Puerto Rico.
The Orlando United Assistance Center (OUAC) is a place offering support, resources and hope for those directly impacted by the Pulse tragedy. A collaboration between the City of Orlando, Orange County Government and Heart of Florida United Way, the OUAC connects individuals and families with community resources to assist with healing.
Goodwill Industries of Central Florida was founded in 1959, through the efforts of a local advocacy group working to increase job opportunities for people with disabilities.
The Salvation Army operates and meets the varied needs of the community through 1968 and continues to serve the citizens of greater Orlando with its varied programs and strives to make a difference in the 21st century.
Hispanic Family Counseling assists with emotional and mental health needs. The extensive experience and quality of our clinicians will help you cope with life’s situations while giving you professional tools to enhance your every day life. Our Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc. staff and therapists are trained in suicide prevention.
Aspire Health Partners, Inc. (Aspire), is a non-profit 501(c)3 behavioral healthcare organization committed to providing individuals and families of Central Florida with compassionate, comprehensive and cost effective behavioral healthcare services that lead to successful living and healthy, responsible lifestyles.
Coalition of Central Florida’s community organizations and public agencies to develop and maintain the most reliable network of service organizations available to the community, through exchange and dissemination of information, education, screening of referrals, and advocacy.
A private, nonprofit organization that collects, stores and distributes donated food to more than 550 feeding partners in six Central Florida counties: Brevard, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia.
The organization alleviates the suffering of children and families who are homeless or/ in transitional situation in Central Florida. It promotes nutrition of the body, mind and spirit as an integrated process of development and improvement of the quality of their life through the faith and hope in God.
One Orlando Alliance
A non-profit organization of over 30 different LGBTQ+ focused organizations, with full support of both the City of Orlando and Orange County Government, established after days of the Pulse tragedy to work in a collaborative and transparent way to serve those affected by the aftermath, including victim’s families, survivors, Pulse employees, and the larger community also struggling with trauma, grief, and fear. The organization connects LGBTQ+ individuals from Puerto Rico who are migrating to the Orlando area and need bilingual assistance about local public and private services.
Public School System
Video: Información para nuevos estudiantes en español
Student Services Department: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bilingual Assistance to Businesses Relocating in Orlando
HCCMO is the largest business-related organization representing the Hispanic community in Central Florida and has been an essential voice for over 20 years. The chamber promotes and supports business growth by providing meaningful insights, advocacy and connections between corporate America and the small businesses we represent.
PRCCCF serves as the voice of business and culture for Central Florida, the Chamber works to ensure that the Central Florida region is a vibrant and prosperous place to carryout business while developing lasting relationships. The Chamber seeks to maintain and enhance a strong business climate based on the principles of free enterprise and social responsibility.
The Chamber represents approximately 900 small, medium and large companies, organizations and governments. Chamber’s members count on us to be the voice of Osceola County business at all levels of government. The entity advocates on behalf of its members for a business climate that enables them to succeed at growing their bottom line.
PROSPERA (formerly HBIF)
Prospera is an economic development, nonprofit organization that since 1991 has specialized in providing bilingual assistance to Hispanic entrepreneurs who want to establish or expand their business. In the last five years alone, Prospera has facilitated over $19 million in loans, invested over $600,000 in grants for services, trained over 21,000 entrepreneurs, and helped clients create or retain over 8,000 jobs.
VHCC is a non-profit organization focused on helping businesses and organizations strategize, organize & grow. VHCC goal is to bring together the businesses, professionals and community leaders to promote economic growth.
Disaster Relief Resources: Volusiachamber.org/disaster-relief-resources
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