After Jennifer Lopez revealed Thursday night that she still hasn’t heard from her family in Puerto Rico — two days after Hurricane Maria ravaged the U.S. territory and left millions without power — she is describing the level of destruction and imploring people to lend a hand.
“The conditions are dire,” the star tells PEOPLE. “We need to do as much as we can to help the people of Puerto Rico.”
Born in the Bronx to Puerto Rican parents, Lopez and her cousin Tiana, who is the singer’s assistant, are awaiting word from multiple family members. Only one relative, a cousin who was hospitalized prior to the hurricane, has been able to make contact.
In the meantime, the 48-year-old singer is doing everything she can to help raise awareness and money for Puerto Rico in the aftermath of the devastating storm.
Want to help Puerto Rico? Here’s a guide to some of the charities working on the island.
Ricky Martin is raising money for hurricane relief here.
Lopez and her boyfriend Alex Rodriguez are spearheading relief efforts and collaborating with others, including Marc Anthony, to harness their celebrity to help out.
“Jen and Alex are making personal phone calls to their celebrity friends and heads of corporations and asking them to donate either funds, planes or money to get supplies to Puerto Rico,” says a source.
Lopez, Rodriguez and Anthony are among other stars with ties to the island making impassioned pleas for donations and aid. Ricky Martin, “Despacito” singer Daddy Yankee and Rosie Perez are also using their star power to help raise awareness and money.
“What’s on my mind is what’s going on in Puerto Rico. The devastation is beyond belief,” J Lo said in an Instagram post backstage from her Las Vegas residency show. “Me and my cousin still haven’t been able to hear from our families over there.
“What’s foremost on my mind and many others is trying to figure out the best way to help,” she added. “Today, Puerto Rico needs our help. I urge you to support and donate to the efforts of the First Lady of Puerto Rico, Beatriz Areizaga. Together we can help rebuild our island, and the Caribbean.”