NEW YORK, December 7, 2017- There’s finally some light at the end of the tunnel for residents of Puerto Rico who have been living in darkness since Hurricane Maria destroyed their communities nearly three months ago. And they have the caregivers of ArchCare, the health and elder care system of the Archdiocese of New York, to thank for powering it.
The caregivers raised more than $8,000 to purchase 15 generators that will soon be en route to Humacao on Puerto Rico’s eastern coast, one of the areas hardest-hit by the storm. They are destined for a local Catholic parish, which will distribute them to parishioners based on need. Many in the area are elderly and poor and have lacked electricity since the Category 4 storm struck the island in late September.
Father John Anderson, ArchCare’s vice president of mission, sprinkled the generators with holy water and blessed them for the journey at a special Mass this morning at ArchCare at Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center in East Harlem. The nursing home’s caregivers and residents attended the event along with ArchCare executives and friends of the ministry. Father Anderson also expressed ArchCare’s thanks to Hispanic Federation, a non-profit group that is providing transportation for the generators and helping to ensure that they arrive safely at their final destination.
With generators in short supply up and down the east coast in the wake of this year’s unusually intense hurricane season, it took weeks for the ArchCare team just to locate the units and figure out how to get them to where they are needed.
“This is yet another shining example of how people in every corner of ArchCare come together to help others in times of need,” said ArchCare President and CEO Scott LaRue. “As a ministry, our mission is to go where the needs are greatest where we can serve best. There are no borders when it comes to the compassion and resourcefulness of our more than 4,000 care members. Wherever there is need, ArchCare people are ready to rise up to meet it.”