More than three months after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, the island of around 3.3 million U.S. citizens is still struggling to recover. One Vermont songwriter is releasing a song to help raise awareness of, and funds for, the ongoing plight of residents of the island territory.
With about half the island still without power, and access to clean water scarce, Burlington-based artist Francesca Blanchard says she wanted to help. She wrote the single Maria as a love song "from the point of view of an island, to a woman named Maria."
The song was written for a benefit concert for Puerto Rico. Now Blanchard is selling the single online for $1, with profits to be donated to hurricane relief efforts on the island.
Blanchard joined Vermont Edition to discuss how the storm shaped the song and how she hopes it inspires others to help.
Listen above the interview with Blanchard. Broadcast on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.