Local ice cream shop brings the community together for Puerto Rico relief donations

Local ice cream shop helps Puerto Rico
Posted at 7:22 AM, Sep 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-28 10:11:06-04

If you know Cleveland's ice cream scene then you know Mason Creamery.

They're known for making homemade ice cream in small batches out of their quaint Ohio City location.

But in recent days, they're becoming known for something else— as a base for the community to come together to donate items for Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria that devastated the island.

It started off with a Facebook post.

A worker at the ice cream shop named Naomi LaBoy grew up and still has family in Santa Isabel, a small town in southern Puerto Rico.

She said her two aunts, several cousins and grandmother are still stranded in Puerto Rico. Her mother received a text via Whatsapp saying her family was okay but in dire need of water and other supplies.

"I was shocked and humbled that so many Clevelanders came out to help," Laboy said.

Co-owner of Mason's Creamery, Helen Qin, said since the Hurricane hit Puerto Rico, everyone at the shop has been checking up on her.

"I think it hits home for us all, it's heartbreaking to not be able to get in touch with loved ones or imagine what's happened to your hometown.," Qin said whose parents live in Houston.

While her parent's home wasn't flooded, the inability to reach loved ones in times of disaster hits home.

"I def understand what it's like to be far away and hear news stories about your hometown flooding and see horrible pictures and feel powerless," Qin said.

Her parents are dropping off supplies Thursday morning— everything from food, water, clothing and other non-perishable items. A group rented a shipping container in Pennsylvania and will then send them to Puerto Rico.

By the end of the day Wednesday,  donations were piled high from floor to ceiling—awaiting their transport to those who need it most.