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Puerto Rico: Building A Future Based On Mutual Aid

By Mutual Aid Disaster Relief - It's Going Down, October 14, 2017

We drove through neighborhoods in the mountains with local residents and our comrades from Guaynabo, delivered food, cases of water, water purification tablets, and provided health care to elderly residents and their families sweltering in damaged homes, surrounded by narrow, perilous roads with no power and waning supplies. We are sharing our time, access to resources, knowledge, skills and quickly beating hearts to contribute to people’s survival and self-determination. It is all part of horizontal, participatory, solidarity-based, liberatory mutual aid disaster relief.

Mutual aid, itself, has been here since before Hurricane Maria and embodied by self-organized groups like Sonadora En Acción and Proyecto de Apoyo Mutuo Mariana. Larger, but also grassroots organizations like Taller Salud and Crowdrescuehq are also spearheading people-powered relief efforts. As wildfires blaze to the west, people in Mexico are still digging out rubble from the earthquake, Houston residents are still cleaning up flooded homes, and people impacted by Irma remain houseless in Florida, we know there is a long road ahead. This is to say nothing of the centuries old disasters of colonization.

Rather than running off of a cliff and thinking we won’t fall if we don’t look down, we realize sustainable and autonomous energy, water, and communications is needed now more than ever if we are to avert the worst of climate chaos. We are raising funds to install modular water and solar systems in heavily impacted rural areas of Puerto Rico. To help us with this project click here.

Or purchase something directly through our Amazon wishlist.

In addition to our ongoing wellness survival program, we have also been partnering with Sanando Puerto Rico to set up clinics and provide free medical aid throughout Puerto Rico. To support Sanando Puerto Rico, click here.

Mutual aid is a revolutionary concept whose time has come and there is so much history that we invite you to help write with us. Got skills in environmental engineering, photovoltaic solar installation, Spanish, or solidarity-based grassroots efforts? Fill out our volunteer form.

Living in south Florida? Want to prepare for when another disaster strikes or 911 and the state cannot be relied upon for our emergency medical needs? Click here to register and come to an emergency medic intensive training.

We will keep building power while the lights are out because we know nothing gets us closer to the better world we know is possible more than embodying it in our current actions. Elders have taught us, and we echo them – we are the ones we’ve been waiting for.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are not the official position of the IWW (or even the IWW’s EUC) and do not necessarily represent the views of anyone but the author’s.

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