HEART 9/11 has been on the ground in Puerto Rico since September 25, 2017 – days after Hurricane Maria devastated the island. Initially HEART 9/11 volunteers – comprised of firefighters, union laborers, carpenters, police, and paramedics – cleared roads, removed trees along with providing medical assessments to communities in need. Teams transitioned to installing hurricane ties and rebuilding/repairing damaged roofs of homes in La Playita, Orocovis, Morovis, and Cantera.
A HEART 9/11 Pre-Apprentice Program was developed training community members in the field of carpentry to continue to rebuild/replace roofs that were damaged by Hurricane Maria. The program covers classroom instruction, first aid, safety, framing theory, beam building, tie-downs/nail patterns, leveling and uplift along with basic blueprint analysis and is taught by trained NYC District of Council Carpenters, New England Regional Council of Carpenters, NJ Regional Council of Carpenters, and NYC union safety instructors. HEART 9/11 has trained 37 pre-apprentices in building construction skills
To date HEART 9/11 has deployed 832 expertly skilled members to Puerto Rico who have logged in 49,682 volunteer hours and have secured 423 roofs utilizing upgraded standards.