Things That Matter

After Criticizing Trump For Not Doing Enough For Puerto Rico, This World-Renowned Chef Rolled Up His Sleeves And Got To Work

President Trump has been criticized for his response and concern for American citizens dealing with the catastrophic aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Recently, he made it a point to tweet that relief work in Puerto Rico “can’t go on forever.” In an effort to mitigate the slow response from the U.S. government, private citizens and charitable organizations have stepped up to bring relief and aid to Puerto Rico. World-renowned chef José Andrés and his disaster relief non-profit called World Central Kitchen are on the ground in Puerto Rico preparing meals for people in remote areas of the island.

D.C.-based chef José Andrés is bringing hot meals, fruits, and water to Puerto Ricans in need.

According to Andrés’ Twitter, World Central Kitchen has recently reached their goal of providing 97,000 meals a day for Puerto Ricans recovering from Hurricane Maria. Andrés also tweeted that they are working toward increasing the number to 120,000 meals a day.

World Central Kitchen has deployed food trucks and chefs throughout the island to feed as many of the hurricane victims as possible.

CREDIT: @chefjoseandres / Twitter

Andrés also says they are feeding the National Guard despite not receiving any government assistance.

CREDIT: @chefjoseandres / Twitter

According to Eater, Andrés asked for helicopter assistance to make distributing food easier but the request was denied. In response to the government’s denial of assistance, Andrés has been vocal on Twitter, calling them out on their lack of support.

As of Oct. 10, according to a press release, World Central Kitchen has given out more than 450,000 meals to those in need under the #ChefsForPuertoRico initiative.

Andrés is also using his time in Puerto Rico to shine a light on the heroes who have been pivotal in helping the hungry and thirsty on the island.

Chef Carlos Perez works for El Blok’s restaurant in Vieques and, according to Andrés’ tweet, Perez stood up to the plate to help those suffering after the hurricane. As a partner of World Central Kitchen’s #ChefsForPuertoRico, Perez is working toward Andrés’ mission to make enough food to avoid a food crisis on the Caribbean island.

If you would like to follow Andrés’ progress helping Puerto Ricans get the food they need, follow #ChefsForPuertoRico.

READ: After Blaming Puerto Rico’s Infrastructure And Economy, Trump Says Hurricane Aid Can’t Last ‘Forever’

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Protestors In Puerto Rico Bringing A Guillotine To The Governor’s Mansion Is Just Another Reminder Boricua’s Don’t Mess Around

Things That Matter

Protestors In Puerto Rico Bringing A Guillotine To The Governor’s Mansion Is Just Another Reminder Boricua’s Don’t Mess Around

@JoshuaPotash / Twitter

Like every other Latin American country and state, Puerto Rico has a long and torrid history with racism.

On the island, hundreds of protestors are now also taking place in the demonstrations that were sparked by the death of African-American police victim, George Floyd. In an effort to combat racism, protesters marched outside the mansion of Governor Wanda Vázquez in Old San Juan. Meanwhile, they chanted and demanded justice for George Floyd while also demanding change in Puerto Rico.

Ignoring the island’s coronavirus curfew, protestors took to the street and protested with all sorts of messages, but the one that truly caught those of us watching was the moment when protestors brought in a guillotine.

As anger and frustration continued to fuel the demonstrations, protestors brought in a massive guillotine to the Governor’s Mansion.

Shariana Ferrer-Núñez, a member of Puerto Rico’s Feminist Collective Under Construction, told Democracy Now that “We recognize that we must dismantle white supremacy, we must dismantle a racialized system, we must eradicate anti-Black violence” about the demonstrations.

According to the blog Orlando Latina, “For Puerto Rico’s elected class, the guillotine ought to be a terrifying symbol, as indeed it was during the French Revolution. But I doubt it, for the political class is a self-serving, self-dealing “firm” that has become unmoored from the people on the ground and oblivious to its needs.”

Here’s hoping this symbol hits elected officials in Puerto Rico enough to attempt to make change.

Nonprofit United We Dream Is Crowdsourcing Immigrant Recipes For A Fundraising Cookbook


Nonprofit United We Dream Is Crowdsourcing Immigrant Recipes For A Fundraising Cookbook

unitedwedream / Instagram

During the COVID-19 lockdowns, people have spent a lot of time in their kitchens cooking food to bring them comfort. One unique thing about the self-isolation is that people are having to figure out how to make things stretch or substitute some of your usual ingredients. United We Dream wants to make sure they can do something good with all of the recipes we have created.

United We Dream wants to use your recipes to create some good.

According to an Instagram post, United We Dream is putting together an undocumented cookbook. In the spirit of sharing recipes and cultural moments, United We Dream is asking for people to submit their recipes.

“At United We Dream we believe in the power of art and culture to change hearts and minds and June is the perfect time to tap into our cultural creativity,” reads the United We Dream website. “On Immigrant Heritage Month, we want to celebrate our community through a joyous art form that every household does: cooking!”

The money is going to be used to help the undocumented and immigrant communities.

Credit: unitedwedream / Instagram

According to Remezcla, 100 percent of profits from the book will go to the organization’s National UndocuFunds. United We Dream launched the National UndocuFund to deliver financial assistance to undocumented people struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is likely that the fund will need to do some extra lifting to help communities recovering from recent looting and rioting that has rocked the U.S. in recent days.

“We know that nothing brings people together quite like food,” reads the United We Dream website. “The dishes that immigrants create, no matter how simple or complex, allow people to experience cultures other than one’s own and all the joys and pleasures that come with it.”

The cookbook is already getting people excited.

Credit: unitedwedream / Instagram

There is something to be said about people getting creative in the kitchen during this pandemic. Outings are limited because we are all staying home to slow the spread. There are also people who are still not at work. That is why we have had to get creative to make our food last.

“Today, times are tough because of COVID-19, but many working-class and poor households are embracing their creativity to create meals that both sustain their households and bring a moment of peace and comfort,” reads the United We Dream website. “We want to create a cookbook that reflects our diverse community and inspires memories of joy, comfort and togetherness!”

United We Dream understands the power of food.

Food is a unifier. Everyone eats and food is one way to connect with your culture. It is also a wonderful way to share your culture with other people. Sharing your food and culture with people is a special way to let your friends into your life.

The organization is still taking recipe suggestions. If you want a chance to give more people a look into who you are and your culture through food, click here to share a recipe.

READ: Colorado Organization Raises Money To Offer Relief Checks To Undocumented People In The State