Disaster Assistance Programs – Puerto Rico | Caribean Islands

By | November 2, 2017

Disaster Assistance Programs –  Natural disasters such as a hurricane, storm, flood, wildfire, or a natural disaster such as a home fire, affect millions of people every year.  If you live in Puerto Rico, Florida or the Caribbean, and have been lost you home, or belongings due to a disaster, there are government, community and charitable organization that can help you start over again.

If you have been warned there is a major storm, hurricane or wildfire coming to your area, please gather all your personal documents and ID to make it easier get help from disaster assistance programs. The year of the 2017 solar eclipse resulted in the worst storms and hurricanes in the recorded history of the United States.  We have listed a number of organizations where you can get help with housing, clothes, food, furniture and medical assistance.

Help is available once the government had declared your city is in a state of emergency.  If you are staying at a shelter, government agents and charities may visit your location to register you for help. You may also be able to register for FEMA and government assistance online.


Applying to Disaster Assistance Programs

Below are some of the document you will need to apply

  • Social Security number
  • Address of property damaged
  • Present mailing address
  • Present phone number
  • Insurance information
  • Gross family annual income
  • Banking account numbers for direct deposit from FEMA
  • A description of your disaster-caused damage and losses

FEMA Assistance for Puerto Rico, Florida or the Caribbean

FEMA stands for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.  It is an agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security.  FEMA’s primary purpose is to coordinate state and local agencies to provide disaster assistance in response to an overwhelming disaster.   FEMA AssistanceApply Here

If you Need Help Right Away 

If you are waiting for assistance from FEMA, there are partners available to provide immediate help.



  • Emergency Medical Assistance Call 9-1-1 Help
  • Shelter:  Salvation Army, American Red Cross or you can get help by testing the word “shelter” and your zip code. Immediate help call 800-621-3362 or for TTY 800-462-7585

Here you can get help from trusted agencies.  Please ask for referrals to other agencies for other needs you may have.

Lost your Primary Home – Receive housing assistance if you have lost your home as a result of a governmentally recognized disaster. You may qualify for assistance if you are a renter or homeowner.  You can only receive help for one issue and services cannot be duplicated.  No assistance is available for secondary homes.  Apply for assistance.

Business Loans – Low-interest loans are available from the SBA for small business owners.

FEMA also helps with medical and dental, child care, funeral and burial, essential household items, moving and storage, vehicle, and some cleaning supplies.

Help with Critical Needs –  You have a life-threatening condition or have an immediate needs like food, water, prescription drugs, medical equipment, infant formula first aid CNA or Critical Needs Assistance is available. You receive a one-time grant of $500 for each household. CNA is authorized by FEMA.


Locate a Crisis Disaster Center –  Disaster Recovery Centers are located in areas that are easy to access.  They also have mobile offices that travel to shelters and other areas where people can get information about programs that are available. Representatives can also help you to apply for assistance.

Puerto Rico, Florida and the Caribbean Islands can receive help from the agencies listed below.

Apply for FEMA and other Assistance

Housing Assistance

Legal Services

Crisis Counseling

SBA information

Funeral Assistance

Understand that areas like the Caribbean and Puerto are more difficult to access, but food, clothes, baby supplies, toiletries are being air dropped and shipped to the residents.  Also, check out FEMA’s YouTube Channel

Emergency Contact Numbers

  • Looking for a safe shelter:  1-800-RED-CROSS
  • Notify family you are safe:  here
  • Receive trauma counseling:  1-800-985-5990 or go here
  • Report a Missing child:   1- 866-908-9570



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