Greenwich Organizes Hurricane Maria Relief Drive for Puerto Rico

A Greenwich resident is organizing a relief drive for non-perishable food and supplies for her native Puerto Rico with the support and assistance from the Town.

Aixa Capozza proposed the relief effort to First Selectman Peter Tesei just days ago.

Under the aegis of Tesei, the Greenwich Police Dept and Byram Volunteer Fire Dept, of which Capozza is a member, donations for the relief drive may be dropped off at the Greenwich Police HQ, beginning October 2 and continuing through October 10, 2017.

Residents are encouraged to donate non-perishable food ranging from water and Gatorade to protein bars, instant oatmeal packs, baby food and formula, and rice.

There also is a need for over-the-counter drugs and personal items such as aspirin, Tylenol, Advil and Motrin.

Also baby wipes, diapers for both babies and adults, deodorant, toilet paper, toothpaste and toothbrushes will be collected.

Donations of portable batteries, flashlights, blankets, tarps and mosquito repellent, solar cell phone chargers and battery-operated fans also will be collected.

“I was there a month-and-a-half ago and if you told me that my island would be devastated, I wouldn’t have believed you,” said Ms. Capozza, who immigrated to Greenwich after graduating high school in the northern coastal valley city of Bayamón.

Hurricane Maria decimated the island with 3.4 million residents on Sept. 20. “The island is completely devastated – there are no roads, no bridges. It is going to be a very long process to rebuild and recuperate. It is not something that is going to be corrected overnight,” Ms. Capozza explained.

First Selectman Tesei said, “When Alex contacted me a few days ago with her initiative, I knew that Greenwich would step up and help those impacted by Hurricane Maria, just as they do whenever disaster happens. Greenwich is fortunate to have such compassionate residents who are so willing to assist those in need.”

Mr. Tesei added, “I commend Alex for taking on this effort, along with the Greenwich Police Department and the Byram Fire Department.”

Ms. Capozza has lived in Greenwich for 35 years where she is an administrative assistant for Community Centers Inc. Ms. Capozza said that the Byram Fire Department is loaning a truck to drive donations to a facility in New York City where Brooklyn Assemblyman Felix Ortiz has arranged for shipping the supplies to Puerto Rico.

Donations may be dropped off between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m. at Greenwich Police Headquarters, 11 Bruce Place.

For more information on donations and how you can help, contact Ms. Capozza at 203-249- 4777.