As Hurricane Maria batters Puerto Rico Wednesday, a number of Central Florida organizations already are coming together to organize relief for people on the island.

The organizations, including The Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce of Central Florida, CASA and Miles For hope, with help from churches such as First Baptist Church of Orlando, are pulling together Wednesday, said Peter Vivaldi, a former Congressional candidate and minister involved in previous relief efforts.

Details are still being worked out, but will be announced Thursday morning at the Acacia Center in Orlando. Donation collections are planned for there and a to-be-announced location in Kissimmee.

Vivaldi said a 45-foot shipping container already has been secured. Another container, with 20,000 pounds of water, food, clothes and supplies, was just shipped out to help with relief in Caribbean islands, following Hurricane Irma.

“Having family and friends on the island, and the anticipation of what is actually going to happen, that we’re in the middle of right now, we’re just praying for the best and bracing for the worst,” Vivaldi said. “Our main concern is loss of life.”

People and organizations interested in assisting can contact Vivaldi at


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