Campus News

Student organizations gather to support disaster relief

Organizations from across campus came together to raise money for communities affected by Hurricane Maria and the recent earthquake that struck Mexico last Tuesday.

Image By: Jacob Schellpfeffer

Students gathered in the crowded Multicultural Student Center Wednesday night for the Latinx Fuerte Fundraiser to show their support for communities affected by Hurricane Maria and the recent earthquake that struck Mexico last Tuesday.

Organizations from across campus came together to raise money and share traditional Latin food in light of recent natural disasters in Latin America.

“I think it’s really important to be there for other Mexicans because they also have family in the U.S,” Aracely Becerra, secretary of Lambda Theda Alpha Latin Sorority, said. “This is the only way we can help them all the way from Wisconsin.”

Nahin Cano, a UW-Madison senior and Powers-Knapp Scholar, organized the event. She said was disappointed that “there wasn’t really anything that was bringing a ton of different orgs together on campus.”

Many students expressed a desire to help with disaster relief in Latin America after being disappointed in the response from the U.S. government.

“I want to support my friends and to support those affected in Mexico and Puerto Rico because it’s largely forgotten in the news media,” Max Vicher, a UW-Madison sophomore, said.

Originally, Cano planned to host a movie night for the fundraiser. However, after over 150 people responded to the event on Facebook and dozens of student organizations volunteered to contribute, it was changed to a potluck where students could discuss the issues at hand.

Prior to Wednesday’s event, Latinx Fuerte had raised approximately $150, but by the end of the night, the group had raised over $1,600.

The money will be donated to United For Puerto Rico and a rural town in Mexico that was affected by the earthquakes.

“Most of those areas [where the money is going] get neglected,” Jesús Deltoro, a UW-Madison student and member of the Lambda Theta Phi Latin Fraternity said. “Most funds go to the Capitol, these areas are often the most affected but don’t get enough help.”

Deltoro hopes this event can be the first of many to raise awareness and funds in light of the recent disasters.

“Given the recent natural disasters, it is important to find a space to come together,” Deltoro said. “This won’t be the last event.”

Latinx Fuerte will be collecting donations for the rest of the week on Venmo at @Latinx-Fuerte. Non-monetary donations for hurricane relief in Puerto Rico are being collected in the Red Gym and the Microbial Sciences building until mid-October.

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