Southern Utah resident organizes collection to assist Puerto Rico

A political party banner waves over a home damaged in the passing of Hurricane Maria, in the community of Ingenio in Toa Baja, Puerto Rico, Oct. 2, 2017 | AP photo by Ramon Espinosa, St. George News
ST. GEORGE — “Mi isla bonita.” It means “my pretty island” and Lourdes Goulding, a native of Puerto Rico who lives in St. George, would like to see her pretty island restored to its beauty after Hurricane Maria devastated it last month.

“People are dying in Puerto Rico,” Goulding, who has family on the island, said. “I need to do something. I can’t just stay home crying and pray that it’s going to go away.”

And Goulding did just that, organizing a drive to send needed personal supplies to the island. JetBlue Airways is going to provide space on one of its flights to Puerto Rico.

“I sent an email to JetBlue, and I said ‘Hey, guys. What started with just I’m going to take some stuff to Salt Lake so your crew members can take it to Puerto Rico … it’s bigger now,'” Goulding said. “I need a plane. Just for our stuff … I’m grateful, but now I think we need a plane. Because there’s a lot.”

Goulding has named her operation “Mi Isla Bonita.” She is hoping that the name will once again apply to her home.

Goulding has put out a plea for more items to be taken to the island, including:

  • Water
  • Medicine (like Tylenol)
  • First-aid kits
  • Canned food
  • Manual can openers
  • Personal hygiene items
  • Diapers, both children and adults
  • Wipes
  • Sheets
  • Blankets
  • Sleeping bags
  • Baby food
  • Baby formula
  • Paper goods
  • Bug repellent
  • Towels
  • Batteries
  • Pet food

All items will be taken to Salt Lake City and flown directly to Puerto Rico to be distributed to families and people affected by the disaster.

Items may be dropped off at:

  • Mattress Firm Store, 15 N. River Road, St. George
  • St. George Recreation Center, 285 S. 400 East, St. George
  • Focus Eye Center 749 S. River Road, St. George
  • Desert Hills Middle School, 936 Desert Hills Drive East, St. George

Deadline for the drive is Thursday afternoon. Goulding has plans to drive the supplies to Salt Lake City Friday and they will be loaded on a JetBlue Airways plane to be taken to Puerto Rico. Goulding did not immediately reply for follow-up by publication time.

Email: rwayman@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews | @NewsWayman

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

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1 Comment

  • Foxyheart October 4, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    Why a deadline so close? Most people have to work and cannot drop off stuff in an afternoon without prior planning. I hope you get what you need but prior notification would have helped you soooo much. God speed.

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