Tennis stars Monica Puig and Maria Sharapova have been to Puerto Rico to provide support for victims of the devastating ‘Hurricane Maria’ which hit the Caribbean Island on September 20. The hurricane left close to 50 people dead, many missing and many homeless. Power on the entire Island was also knocked out and about a million people are still without running water following the disaster.
Monica Puig who became the small country’s first Olympic gold medalist in any sport by winning the Women’s singles in Rio last year started a fundraising campaign that has raised over £100,000 so far. The money has been used to buy lamps, stoves, propane cylinders, medication and more for the country. Maria Sharapova Sharapova is also donating all profits from her candy company ‘Sugarpova’ through the end of the year.
A number of other tennis players also pledged their support for the cause. Grateful for the love shown, Puig said:
“It was amazing to see the support from other players and to see how much they really cared about what was going on. I’m the only tennis player from Puerto Rico, so I don’t really have that many people backing me.”
Puig and Sharapova helped distribute supplies and visited San Jorge Children’s Hospital in San Juan. The pair shared their journey on Instagram and Puig thanked her fellow tennis player for the support.
“Together we helped the lives of thousands of people today and this is just the beginning! Puerto Rico will come back better and stronger from this! Thanks for helping me give them hope and a smile!”