After hurricane damage, Wisconsin Puerto Ricans are looking to help

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WISCONSIN (CBS 58) -- Hurricane Fiona continues to cause devastation in the Caribbean as it's made landfall in the Dominican Republic.

Puerto Ricans are trying to pick up the pieces from the damage there.

Organizers of the Puerto Rican Family Festival in Milwaukee say they're starting to hear how bad things are from family members there, and soon, they plan on doing what they can to send help.

"There's no electricity and they already started talking about rationing drinking water. So you know, we're waiting to see what happens in the next few weeks," said Victor Huyke, publisher of the bilingual newspaper El Conquistador, which organizes the annual Puerto Rican Family Festival.

Huyke says his family lives in the north, where the least of the damage is, but they're telling him how many mountains in the south of the country are being flooded out, causing mudslides and massive damage.

"[I've seen] pictures of bridges being washed out and rivers overflowing and houses sliding down hills," said Huyke.

Five years ago, when the country was hit by Hurricane Maria and Irma back-to-back, Huyke and many people like him who have deep connections to Puerto Rico raised funds and collected items to send.

He says sending funds is easy, but shipping issues can leave items sitting in containers for weeks.

"I don't think we realize how hard that really was until we got stuck with all this stuff," said Huyke. "And I was like, okay, now we got to ship it."

This time he says El Conquistador is working on setting up a fundraiser.

"Within the next few days we'll have a social media page set up and we'll instruct people from there," said Huyke. "We want to just try to make sure that Puerto Rico, they have family here that is going to help."

You can keep tabs on El Conquistador's website and Facebook page for more information about fundraisers in the coming days.

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