After hurricanes, disaster relief supplies such as food and water are an immediate need. The first step to getting the supplies to its destination is getting funding for the operations. Therefore, supply distribution after a hurricane is an issue that mainly requires immediate funds.

After Hurricane Maria and Irma, many non-governmental organizations pitched in to help with the recovery effort. We hope to enlist various new or already existing NGOs to assist Puerto Rico’s development of supply distribution. Counting on several NGOs to contribute mass amounts of funds and volunteers to help Puerto Rico after every hurricane is not ideal, but if some NGOs will donate a set amount, some of that amount could be directed to focusing on supply distribution. Unlike other massive infrastructural projects that take years, supply distribution after a disaster requires immediate funds and action. Since NGO only can provide a temporary aid, directing their aid to upfront problems would make more sense than trying to have them provide aid to island wide infrastructure projects.

Another way to generate large sums of money quickly is to have people outside of the island know there is a problem on Puerto Rico and it requires aid. In our current age of technology, social media is the place where news and ideas can spread globally in a matter of seconds. Our second funding proposal is to gain influence and support of celebrities and have them spread the word. Celebrities have an enormous base of followers, which means any posts and mention of Puerto Rico on their social media can instantly reach hundreds, thousands, and even millions of people instantly. Their widespread influence can greatly benefit Puerto Rico in getting the disaster relief attention it needs.

A third but much less likely source of funding would be from the international community. Puerto Rico is not a country, it’s a commonwealth of the United States. This means getting international aid for island can be extremely difficult since it would also involve the executive and legislative branches of the United States government and the political situation in Puerto Rico. Still, we would like to propose looking into and finding any possibilities getting aid from other countries such as a Global Donation Fund from the UN.

Project Proposal Budget

Project ProposalsEstimated Cost (USD)
Puerto Rico National Guard (minimum)$403M
Crop insurance and educational programs for farmers$28M
Renovation of water piping system$1B to $1.5 B
Provide water filters$4.38M
Reforesting key areas in northeastern Puerto Rico$15M to $30M
“Holding Facilities” of supplies near ports$30M to $45M
Bunkers$3.75M to $6M
Community centers$342M
Pharmacy generators$1.63M
Provide generator repair kits$8,250
Maintain and repair private generators of water distribution and waste management centers$82,500/year
Total:$1.83B to $2.354B

Figure 1: The cost of implanting proposal plans to ensure access to resources before and after a hurricane.