Tackling Food Insecurity in Puerto Rico with Atma Go

Tackling Food Insecurity in Puerto Rico with Atma Go

Community ties are strong in Puerto Rico. This is a place that is built around people getting together and working together. While poverty and food insecurity were always problems in Puerto Rico, which imports over 80% of its food, the extensive damage inflicted on the island from Hurricane Maria accelerated and intensified this issue. While 1.4 million Puerto Ricans were food insecure before the hurricane, Maria left the majority of households in this condition. 

Then the Covid-19 Pandemic hit. In 2020, while enduring one of America´s strictest lockdowns, one food bank reported handing out almost two million meals, doubling from last year. Food prices on the island are high, especially for fresh food.

Reducing food insecurity by helping neighbors turn backyards into income-producing urban gardens is just one way AtmaGo has been a critical community tool in Puerto Rico this past year.

Thanks to support from generous partners like Vodafone and Love, Tito’s, we’ve been able to train 166 Puerto Rican residents in citizen journalism and reach 148,301 local users with information and resources to empower their communities. 

International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction

Connecting communities & resources with AtmaGo

People are more likely to survive disasters and address vulnerabilities when they have good social networks and connections. But especially on the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction, we recognize that there is no one easy fix or perfect tool to reduce disaster risk. The best plan for resilience and saving lives? One that connects resources and communities at every level.

Imelda is just one of millions who have used AtmaGo to share vital information that helps them recover from disasters (and prepare for the next one), reporting problems and sharing solutions to daily challenges in their neighborhood.  

“After the disaster [Sulawesi earthquake] the area where I live did not have a clean water supply, we didn’t know where to look for clean water, and the power was out. After reading a post on AtmaGo that said that the Red Cross had a water supply, the whole family and I went to the Red Cross office, and Alhamdullillah, the Red Cross provided water to our housing complex.”
-Imelda, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Learn more: Can mobile phones improve disaster preparedness?

More from the UN about #DRR and disaster risk governance