Mark Walter, Dodgers Pledge $2 Million Donation For Hurricane Maria Relief Efforts In Puerto Rico
Carrie Cochran-The Enquirer via USA TODAY NETWORK

The Los Angeles Dodgers and owner Mark Walter announced a $2 million donation to Habitat for Humanity of Puerto Rico, joining Kiké Hernandez and his fiancée’s, to support rebuilding efforts following the devastation left behind by Hurricane Maria in 2017.

“It’s been more than six months since Hurricane Maria’s devastating effects on Puerto Rico and with so much work still to be done, the Dodgers want to do our part to help with the island’s rebuilding and recovery efforts,” Walter said.

“Kiké and Mariana have been such strong advocates for Puerto Rico, and we want to join their families and loved ones in helping repair the community and work towards a return to normalcy.”

Kiké Hernandez and his fiancée, Mariana Vicente, added $250,000 to the Dodgers’ donation through their fundraising campaign that launched last September. Walter’s pledge spawned from an agreement reached with Hernandez during the 2017 National League Championship Series.

Hernandez proceeded to slug three home runs in the rout of the Chicago Cubs in Game 5, which propelled the Dodgers to their first World Series appearance since 1988.

“Puerto Rico is a such a special place, and I’d like to thank Mark and the entire Dodger organization for their support and help in rebuilding our homeland following these natural disasters,” Hernandez said. “This donation will provide housing assistance for many families, but there’s a long way to go and many people that still need our help.”

The donation has been earmarked to focus on rehabilitating/reconstructing damaged homes in Humacao, Santa Isabel, Ponce, Patillas, Arroyo and constructing new housing in Guayama.

Habitat for Humanity of Puerto Rico has been building and repairing homes since 1997. The organization expanded its mission in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, and expects to play a leading role in the island’s housing reconstruction effort, investing millions over the next five years with the goal of building and reconstructing for families in need.

Habitat’s three-phased disaster response focuses on immediate relief, community stabilization and long-term recovery.

“We are honored to have been selected by such a prestigious organization as the Dodgers, and by the much-loved and admired Puerto Ricans Kiké Hernandez and Mariana Vicente, to carry-out the important task of providing safe and decent housing for Puerto Rican families affected by Hurricane Maria,” said Amanda Silva, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Puerto Rico.

“Together, we will work towards the reconstruction of our island with the same passion that the Dodgers display on the baseball field.”

Fans can join in the efforts of Walter, Hernandez, Vicente and the Dodgers by donating at english.habitatpr.org/dodgers/.