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Wednesday Report: Knocking on Doors in the Aftermath of Irma

Daniel Garcia shares his reflections after a day of working to serve residents of Little Haiti and Little Havana in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

Today I had the opportunity to drive around, assist the different teams on the field and hear from some of the volunteers that where our and about.

The canvassers came back with stories of knocking on doors and finding elders of our communities answering the door experiencing a harsh summer heat without air conditioning and in some cases lack of ventilation, filled with sweat and in some cases unable to go out to the BBQ. To those that could not go out to the staging area we went to them and delivered food and water.

The view on my way back from Littlle Havana’s Riverside Park

I got to observe our volunteers going to people’s homes and cut fallen trees on their properties, ensure that people are able to get around.

Getting around is very challenging with several closed roads, communication is a considerable challenge which also brings into perspective the great threat. We have vulnerable and marginalized communities that are not able to ask for help, have no electricity and are mostly not see in media.

To hear during our meeting that we where able to free someone that was trapped in their own home is a testament to the emergency. Higher temperature brings more dangers to our vulnerable and also older communities.

At the end of the day, I drove back to my temporary home. I could not help but realize that had I not heard first hand accounts from people on the field and observed first hand the communities coming,  I would not have known the dangers that are presently out there.

It highlights the importance of our work in our vulnerable communities.

NewFM’s Francois Alexandre is one of many volunteerss and staff helping to clear roads and clear tree debris in Little Haiti in the the aftermath of Hurricane Irma

As I drove further north the damage was less prevalent. In better to do areas it was starting to look like a few neighbors did yard work, gone where the trees cluttering culdesac roads, homes already observing electricity and yet many still with power, electric lines still scattered in the ground and trees clutter our marginalized communities.

Tomorrow, we’re back at it again.