BUFFALO, N.Y. - Western New York families are beginning to hear from loved ones who endured the devastation of Hurricane Maria.
Maritza Feliciano has been in tears with a phone in her hand since the hurricane. Tuesday morning she was finally able to connect with her mother by phone in Comerio, Puerto Rico.
"She just got in contact with me, she's saying over there in Puerto Rico there's no water, no food," in her city.
It's a relief since the last word she got on her mom was that she screamed and ran into a closet as the storm hit. "Mama don't cry, just tell them what you need. what's going on over there, are they giving you guys what you need in Puerto Rico," she asked and her mother said "nothing, no help yet."
The need for water is so bad that her mother was planning to go to a local river.
As for damage, there are blown out windows and their chickens and rooster died in the hurricane.
"Almost a week without hearing about your mother, father, or brother and all of a sudden you're reaching out and getting the communication, that is a big relief," said Feliciano.
Esther Montes and her niece Zoraida Reyes learned their family in Villalba is safe after the storm.
Henry Soto is still waiting to learn if his dear grandmother in Moca, Puerto Rico is OK.
Several donation centers have been set up to collect items for emergency relief from Sept. 25 to Oct. 6.
Buffalo City Hall
All county buildings
Belle Center, 104 Maryland St. (8 a.m. to 6 p.m.)
St. Anthony's Church, 306 Ingham Ave., Lackawanna (10 a.m. to noon and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.)
Items being collected include
-regular "D" batteries (no lithium rechargeables)
-old-style can openers
-baby supplies (diapers and wipes)
Tax-deductible checks may be made payable to the Puerto Rico Hurricane Maria Relief Fund. A GoFundMe account has also been set up and can be accessed through the Puerto Rican Hurricane Maria Relief Fund Facebook page.
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