PINELLAS - With many Puerto Ricans fleeing the island after Hurricane Maria and coming to Florida, some counties are doing everything they can to help them.
Thursday morning, Pinellas county hosted a bilingual panel at St. Petersburg College in Clearwater, to provide information to local Hurricane Maria evacuees.
Agencies involved included the Hispanic Outreach Center, the Pinellas County school district, the Supervisor of Elections, the Salvation Army and RCS Food Bank.
HOUSING | @fema will be helping PR evacuees with hotels-- 18006213362 to register. "Rapid Rehousing" also helping with finding houses.— Shannon Valladolid (@ShannonMarieTV) November 2, 2017
Community Health Centers of Pinellas is waving fees for those needing to see the doctor, an OBGYN, dentist, pediatrician, among other things.
You can go here to find your nearest community center in your area.
You can also text your zip code to 8-9-8-2-1-1 to receive information on:
• Food, shelter and clothing
• Physical and mental health services
• Support for seniors and persons with disabilities
• Support for children, youth and families
• Volunteer opportunities and donations
If you need to refill your prescriptions or do not have access to prescription medications you need, retail pharmacies in Florida may provide a 30-day emergency prescription refill.
Take your prescription and insurance information to your closest pharmacy to receive an emergency supply.
There have been over 100 students that have relocated from Puerto Rico and enrolled in Pinellas County School District, according to district spokeswoman Lisa Wolf.
The CHD will help parents get the proper health forms and immunizations at no cost but Bill Lawrence with the school district says families are not required to have one piece of paperwork to enroll their kids in school.
But will need that paperwork eventually.
You can start by calling the district’s student assignment office at 727-5886210. There are bilingual staff members who assist parents speaking Spanish.
“Food is very important to children and their ability to learn. It’s hard to learn when you’re hungry so we do provide free breakfast and lunch at every single school for kids in need,” says Lawrence.
Parents are also able to get free breakfast and dinner at some schools.
The district is also waving vaccine records for PR students for 30 days, since they understand many families lost all important paperwork during the storm.
"Clothes to kids" will provide free uniforms to PR evacuee students. Your application will be accelerated.
The panel also touched on housing. FEMA will be providing hotels and “Rapid Rehousing” will be helping evacuees find homes.
You can call 18006213362 for FEMA assistance.
If your living in temporary housing and concerned about sanitary conditions, each community Health center in Florida has environmental experts to assist you.
For information about the event, visit www.pinellascounty.org or call the county at 727-464-4600.
© 2018 WTSP-TV