Entrepreneur creates app to ease transition for Puerto Rican evacuees

By Paula Machado, Reporter
Last Updated: Thursday, December 28, 2017, 12:11 PM EST

A Central Florida entrepreneur will soon launch a mobile app intended to make the transition easier for families arriving from Puerto Rico to mainland United States.

  • Dimelo USA app created for families arriving from Puerto Rico
  • App acts as free one-stop app for families seeking info
  • Dimelo USA expected to go live in a few weeks
  • RELATED: Hurricane Maria impact

"I lived in Ecuador quite a while, and Ecuador had an earthquake not too long ago,” said Julio Rocha, creator of Dimelo USA app.

Rocha knows what it's like to have your country devastated by a natural disaster. When Hurricane Maria destroyed Puerto Rico, it was only natural for him to find a way he could help.

"I said the time that Puerto Rico needs me, you won't even need to ask me, I will show up first,” said Rocha.

For months, the Ecuadorian entrepreneur has been hard at work creating the Dimelo USA App.

“It's a hub — I'm not re-inventing the wheel,” Rocha said.  

It's a one-stop app for Puerto Rican families to use when they're in need of information. The app, created in Spanish, identifies five main needs: identification, transportation, housing, health centers and jobs.

Rocha quickly realized that families coming to Central Florida don't necessarily arrive with many belongings but most of them have phones.

In collaboration with an app-developing agency in his home country of Ecuador, Dimelo USA is slowly coming together.

"It's not just going to help Puerto Ricans, it's going to help people from Venezuela, people from Colombia,” said Rocha.

Rocha also said he’s invested his own money creating the app and has no plans of gaining revenues for now. He expects the app to be live and ready to download in a few weeks.

The app will be free to download and available for both Apple and Android phones.