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City opens Virtual Resource Center to assist hurricane evacuees from Puerto Rico
On this week’s episode of Chicago Stories podcast, Congressman Luis Gutiérrez sat down with Mayor Emanuel to announce their upcoming relief trip to Puerto Rico in March 2018 to view recovery efforts firsthand. They also discussed the latest DACA developments, President Trump’s wall and how the Congressman is preparing for his next career: life after Congress.
Since Puerto Rico’s devastation following Hurricane Maria, Congressman Gutiérrez and Mayor Emanuel have been working closely together on Chicago’s response to provide supplies and assistance desperately needed by its residents. Unfortunately, their action has been one of necessity following the Trump Administration’s indefensible unwillingness to help the island rebuild and recover.
Mayor Emanuel and Congressman Gutiérrez for their part never sat by. Immediately after the hurricane hit, they organized relief flights to the island and established the Welcome Center in Humboldt Park.
Today, the City of Chicago launched the Virtual Hurricane Resource Center, a bilingual website as part of its ongoing commitment to assist Hurricane Maria evacuees from Puerto Rico as they resettle in Chicago. The website is available in both English and Spanish.
Evacuees can continue to seek assistance at the Trina Davila Community Service Center located at 4312 W. North Avenue, Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. or they can call 311 at any time for assistance.
The Welcome Center in Humboldt Park served as a one-‐stop shop for evacuees to connect with resources and various local, state and federal government agencies and community-‐based organizations. Since its opening on November 2, 2017, the City of Chicago and its partner agencies and organizations have assisted 1,421 individuals or 726 families at the Welcome Center in the Humboldt Park Fieldhouse. The services most sought out include housing, school enrollment, employment and FEMA assistance.
In early October, Mayor Emanuel and Congressman Gutiérrez convened a meeting of Chicago elected officials, community leaders and private stakeholders to discuss relief efforts underway in Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria and to support recovery on the island. In addition, 23 members of the Chicago Fire Department including firefighters, paramedics, EMTs and engineers spent 10 days in Puerto Rico and provided aid, support and an on-‐the-‐ground assessment of additional resources needed.
Puerto Rico has been declared a national disaster and Chicagoans with impacted family members are encouraged to have them register for FEMA assistance immediately by going online to www.DisasterAssistance.gov.
To donate to or search for volunteer opportunities, find a verified list of organizations and charities here: www.cityofchicago.org/DisasterRelief.
Subscribe to Mayor Emanuel’s weekly “Chicago Stories” podcast on Apple Podcasts at http://bit.ly/ChiStories to catch the latest episode. You can also listen on Soundcloud or Spotify.