November 19, 2017
Nov 19

MEDIA ADVISORY: President Clinton to Visit Puerto Rico Monday

San Juan, Puerto Rico
Press Release

Trip will help assess progress of the work of the Clinton Foundation and its partners to deliver emergency medical supplies and solar energy resources

San Juan, Puerto Rico – On Monday, November 20, President Bill Clinton will travel to Puerto Rico to visit communities that were impacted by Hurricanes Maria and Irma, including sites that are receiving assistance through the work of the Clinton Foundation and its partners, and assess ongoing relief needs. Since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, the Clinton Foundation community has responded by providing lifesaving aid and relief, including urgently needed medical supplies and donations of solar energy equipment. President Clinton’s visit follows a meeting with Governor Ricardo Rosselló earlier this month in New York.

In the morning, President Clinton and Governor Rosselló will visit a shelter in Canóvanas, which is providing temporary housing for those displaced by Hurricane Maria. In addition, President Clinton will visit health clinics that have received essential medical supplies through Clinton Foundation partner Direct Relief.

In the afternoon, President Clinton and the Mayor of San Juan Carmen Yulín Cruz will visit the Plaza del Mercado de Río Piedras in San Juan, which is being prepared to receive solar panels through the Solar Saves Lives project.  He will close his visit with a meeting with Congresswoman Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon and mayors of municipalities that were impacted by the hurricanes, including San Juan and Ponce.

In response to Hurricanes Maria and Irma, the Clinton Foundation helped Direct Relief to coordinate and facilitate the largest emergency airlift of medical aid, to date, to Puerto Rico since the natural disaster. The shipment included 76 tons of medicines and medical equipment, including vials of blood-clotting factor for children with hemophilia, vials of insulin, pre-kitted emergency medical packs containing a broad range of medications and supplies, as well as solar lights and bottles of insect repellant to protect against Zika virus. The Clinton Foundation has supported Direct Relief’s work for years, including the recovery efforts after the 2010 Haiti earthquake and the response to the Ebola epidemic in West Africa in 2014.

Starting in early October, the Clinton Foundation created the Solar Saves Lives effort in partnership with The Solar Foundation, Operation Blessing, Direct Relief and other major humanitarian organizations to join a wide range of solar energy companies to mount an industry-wide relief effort to help restore electricity in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands through solar energy, which is both better for the environment and economy. The new effort, Solar Saves Lives, is organizing deliveries of solar and solar storage technologies to power critical infrastructure in disaster-impacted communities.

In addition, responding to urgent, widespread need in the midst of a catastrophic hurricane season, President Clinton joined with the other four living former American presidents to issue the “One America Appeal” to ask their fellow citizens and friends around the world to support the staggering recovery needs. After Hurricane Maria struck, the appeal expanded to include Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

These efforts continue President Clinton’s longstanding role of helping marshal resources to respond to natural disasters, including after the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Hurricane Ike in 2008, and Haiti’s devastating earthquake in 2010.

***Site Visits for Planning Purposes Only***Subject to Change***

Please RSVP to [email protected] if you would like to cover any of the below visits.  Transportation for registered media will be provided between sites. Due to limited space, priority will be given to those who register in advance. Details will be provided upon registration.

For any questions, please contact [email protected].

ESCUELA WILLIAM RIVERA BETANCOURT SHELTER IN CANÓVANAS: Distribution of essential household goods and personal care products
Where: PR-188, Canóvanas, 00729, Puerto Rico
When: 8:30 a.m. (PRE-SET 7:45 a.m.)

President Clinton will visit the Escuela William Rivera Betancourt, located in Canóvanas, which was turned into an emergency shelter for families whose homes were destroyed or deemed unlivable after Hurricane Maria. He will tour the facility with the Honorable Ricardo Rosselló, governor of Puerto Rico. During the visit, President Clinton will help distribute essential household goods and personal care products, such as diapers, soap, and over-the-counter medication that was provided by Direct Relief.

Like many other areas in northeastern Puerto Rico, Canóvanas was particularly devastated by both Hurricanes Maria and Irma, and currently still running the largest on-island shelter. Many houses in the community were destroyed, and the community continues to struggle for access to safe water and electricity.

CONCILIO DE SALUD INTEGRAL DE LOÍZA PRIMARY CARE CLINIC: Distribution of medical supplies through Direct Relief
Where: Carretera #188 Int. #187, Loíza, Puerto Rico
When: 10:30 a.m. (PRE-SET 10:10 a.m.)

President Clinton will visit the Concilio de Salud Integral de Loíza primary care clinic, a “330 health facility,” located in the town of Loíza that received medical supplies from the Direct Relief airlift. President Clinton will meet with the clinic’s doctors, who provide a wide array of preventive care services: family and internal medicine, dentistry, pediatrics and OB/GYN services, vaccinations, x-rays and laboratory services, HIV care, and psychological services.

Direct Relief has supported the clinic with deliveries of medicines and medical equipment since Hurricane Maria. From the Direct Relief airlift, the clinic received medical backpacks, nutritionals—such as baby formulas, nutritional drinks like Pediasure and Ensure and electrolyte replacements for children with diarrhea—and saline solution.

PLAZA DEL MERCADO DE RÍO PIEDRAS: Selected site for solar energy retrofit through Solar Saves Lives
Where: Calle Vallejo, Rio Piedras, San Juan 00925, Puerto Rico
When: 12:30 p.m. (PRE-SET 12:10 p.m.)

President Clinton will then join San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz at the Plaza del Mercado de Rio Piedras market, Puerto Rico’s largest farmers, which is targeted for a solar energy installation using panels collected by the Clinton Foundation, The Solar Foundation, and partners through the Solar Saves Lives effort. He will view one of the solar panels as well as small, individual handheld solar products engineered for extreme weather.

Starting in early October, the Clinton Foundation with The Solar Foundation, Direct Relief, and Operation Blessing created the Solar Saves Lives partnership to address the ongoing energy crisis in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands as a result of Hurricanes Maria and Irma. The Solar Saves Lives effort was established to leverage the skill set and knowledge of each partner organization.

HEALTHPROMED FOUNDATION HEALTH CENTER IN SANTURCE: Distribution of medical supplies through Direct Relief
Where: Ave Borinquen 2020, Santurce, Puerto Rico
When: 2:50 p.m. (PRE-SET 2:30 p.m.)

President Clinton will visit the the HealthproMed Foundation Health Center in Santurce, San Juan, where he will donate medical supplies provided by Clinton Foundation partner Direct Relief, which were requested by the health center. The HealthproMed Foundation health center in the Santurce district provides comprehensive primary care services to the local community, including diagnostic services, including laboratory and radiology; obstetrics and gynecological care; mental health services; adult and pediatric medicine; vaccinations; dental care; and a pharmacy. The center also conducts community outreach and enrollment programs in the Santurce area and operates a walk-in clinic. With more than 90,000 residents, Santurce is one of the most densely populated areas in San Juan and in the whole of Puerto Rico. The area was badly impacted by Hurricane Maria, with many homes being flooded or sustaining structural damage.

Since Hurricane Maria, Direct Relief has supplied the health center with shipments of medicines and medical equipment valued at more than $1 million in total. This includes a wide array of essential supplies such as antibiotics; painkillers; saline solution; insulin and glucose meters for diabetic patients; wound care supplies; and protective equipment such as masks for health workers.

MEETING WITH PUERTO RICAN MAYORS: Participants will discuss the impact of the hurricanes and plans to build back better.
Where: #157 Constitution Ave., Tropical Medicine Building, 2nd Foor, San Juan, Puerto Rico
When: 4:30 p.m. (PRE-SET 4:10 p.m.)

President Clinton will meet with Congresswoman Jenniffer González-Colón and a bipartisan group of Puerto Rican mayors, including the mayors of San Juan and Ponce, to discuss the impact of the hurricanes in their constituencies and their plans for building back better.

NOTE: As this is a working meeting, the meeting will be open to members of the media only for the first five minutes.