Reclaman ser parte integral de la respuesta oficial a los desastres, para tener las herramientas que les permitan actuar más allá del voluntariado que ya hacen, y ser más efectivos apoyando a la gente a sobrellevar el impacto emocional por los huracanes, los terremotos y el COVID-19.
This story was published in partnership with the Center for Public Integrity. After Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, social worker Erica Colón Ortega organized psychologists, therapists and religious counselors to meet with residents in her community of Dorado. Many living there had lost all their possessions after flood water rushed into homes sitting along the river. As Colón Ortega talked to residents about their losses, she also heard about the emotional toll — feelings of despair, sadness and anguish as they struggled to rebuild. Now, as COVID-19 surges, mental-health needs in Dorado and across Puerto Rico are further mounting, she and other experts warn.