Puerto Rico is reeling from devastating earthquakes: How you can help

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Thousands are homeless and without power and water as aftershocks continue to shake the island.

The new year is off to a grim start in Puerto Rico. A series of recent earthquakes there, including a 6.4 quake on Jan. 7 that’s being called the strongest to shake the island in a century, has killed one person and left thousands homeless and without power and water. CBS News reports that more than 2,000 tremors have occurred since Dec. 28.

The current situation

David Begnaud, lead national correspondent for CBS This Morning, has beenĀ reporting from the quake-stricken island. (Editors’ note: CBS and CNET are owned by ViacomCBS.) On Monday, he reported from the top of a mountain in hard-hit Guanica, speaking to people who feel unsafe returning to their homes and thus are sleeping outside as aftershocks continue. One family of 11 had no power or water and has been sleeping in their yard for nearly a week.

How to help

  • The nonprofit humanitarian organization Direct Relief is working to get medical care, mental health services and medicine such as insulin to Puerto Ricans. The Jan. 7 earthquake damaged three major hospitals, the group says on its site. The group has provided more than 500 evacuees with medical care, medication, mosquito nets, solar chargers and flashlights. Direct Relief has a donation page that asks donors whether to direct their contributions to the Puerto Rico effort or other crises such as the Australian bushfires, or simply use it where it’s most needed.

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