Disaster Relief Attempts From Your Community


Rebecca Johnson, Editor

On September 20th Hurricane Maria hit causing mass devastation to the environment and to the people of Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States so when disaster occurred efforts from all over America sparked. Trump visited on October 3rd and claimed that disaster response will be even more necessary than it was for Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Irma in Florida.


Puerto Rico is already in massive debt and it will cost approximately $45 billion to $90 billion in repairs. 70 percent of the island is still without electricity and it will take time paired with a lot of money to restore the power system.  Many people have limited food and clean water. They have little cell service and many roads have been destroyed so communication is difficult. The island needs help from anyone who can spare their money or provide supplies.


“As long as we are trying to help them it’s okay that they’re still out of power. It shows we still have a sense of humanity in a world where there is so little left,” Senior Erica Baldwin said.


Students from Bentonville High School and Bentonville West HIgh school have collected items for the disaster relief with a Hygiene and Water Drive. Supplies that were collected included: adult diapers, baby diapers, baby formula, batteries, chapstick, dental floss, deodorant, disposable gloves, face wipes, flashlights, feminine hygiene, hand sanitizer, insect repellant, non-perishables, razors, shampoo, soap, socks/flip-flops, toothpaste, tooth brush, and wipes. Many students and clubs, such as Spanish Honors Society, donated or contributed to help struggling citizens of Puerto Rico with this amazing opportunity.

“One young lady told me that her grandmother does not have electricity and that she borrows a generator for one hour a day to pump water and take care of the essentials,” Mrs. Shelly Harris, the coordinator for BHS donations, said. There are students in our district that are influenced by this disaster with family members stuck in peril. Even through this tragic mess we have a lot to be proud of.  “Bentonville and West Bentonville reached out to other schools in the district and together brought in a huge number of donations,” Mrs. Shelly Harris, the coordinator for BHS donations, said.  The donations from our community go through a group in LIttle Rock called Puerto Ricans en Arkansas.  They will take the items to the Little Rock Air Force base and they will be shipped through the AR National Guard to Puerto Rico.


Our community diligently made efforts to better the conditions that the residents of Puerto Rico are living in. Hopefully with the supplies from our community and others from all over America they will be able to regain electricity and build their strength for the restoration of their island.