News 8 telethon to raise money for Puerto Rico

Local News

Editor’s note: Tonight’s telethon for Puerto Rico relief goes from 4 p.m. through 6:30 p.m. and the number to call is 585-287-8005. You can also come to our station at 201 Humboldt St. in Rochester to drop off donations.

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The American Red Cross will be holding a telethon at News 8 Monday to raise funds for those impacted by continuous earthquakes in Puerto Rico.

Boxes of supplies are filling up the home of Mercedes Simmons. Food, diapers, and cleaning items are just some of the donations that Simmons is sending to those in need in Puerto Rico after earthquakes hit the island causing havoc.

“The really neat part about it is that they all have a message on it from the students,” said Mercedes Simmons, telethon volunteer.

The donations go further than just supplies as many message of hope will be sent as well.

“There is, I believe close to 20 letters that are going to go to the students. In Puerto Rico, most of them have already been displaced from not only their schools but their home. They’re in shelters.”

Hundreds of small earthquakes have shaken Puerto Rico in the last weeks — and many are still recovering from the aftermath of destroyed homes and businesses.

Leaders with The Red Cross say the people on the ground still need help and are holding a telethon with New 8 in order to raise funds.

“It’s left thousands of people in shelters and again, thousands more that are staying outdoors because of fear of more tremors. It’s an ongoing situation,” Jay Bonafede said, a regional communications officer with the American Red Cross.

The Red Cross already has teams on the ground and have gathered emergency supplies, but they say telethons like the one happening at News 8 could help even more people get back on their feet.

“People just want to help and this is one way that we can do it is by holding this fundraiser that will bring more attention to what’s happening to the folks there and will also give people in Rochester an opportunity to help,” said Bonafede.

The Red Cross telethon will go from 4 through 6:30 pm, Monday. Phone numbers for donations will appear on channel 8 during those times.

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