Filmmaker Silent Launches Fundraiser for Puerto Rico’s La Perla Community

Nov 14, 2015
1:30 PM
La Perla is an ocean-side neighborhood in Old San Juan outside the walls of Castillo de San Cristóbal. (vxla/Flickr)

La Perla is an ocean-side neighborhood in Old San Juan outside the walls of Castillo de San Cristóbal. (vxla/Flickr)

Photographer and videographer Frank Rivera — who goes by the name “Silent” — is currently working on a documentary on La Perla, the historically poor section of Old San Juan in Puerto Rico, and he’s launched a fundraising campaign to donate money to the community this Christmas.

In March of this year, I set out to continue filming for my first documentary in La Perla, Puerto Rico. La Perla is one of Puerto Rico’s most notorious “slums” and is unfortunately known for negative aspects. The goal of my documentary was (and is) to shed light on the positivity within the community. I spent a month living in La Perla, and it opened my eyes and absolutely changed my life. I witnessed a lot of love, pride and humbleness between the people. The residents are eager to overcome the negative stigma and show that they are normal people just trying to survive through hardships.

I really wanted to give back in some way, and when I recently showed my family some footage, we decided to do a Christmas fundraiser. La Perla has a community center that houses pretty much all activities — karate, computers, arts & crafts, etc. — and we would love to gift the kids and adults gym and sporting equipment to help keep them active. Items we would like to buy include basketballs, footballs, bats and baseballs, roller skates, jump ropes, weights, and so on. We also want to get a printer for their computer and toys for the children, among other things. I figure this would be an amazing way to show my gratitude to the community, for opening their hearts and allowing me to tell their story.

With your help, we will be able to give back and brighten up an already amazing community of people. I thank you for your support and hope that we can exceed our goals and show the world what love and support can really do for others.

For more information on the documentary and to donate to La Perla, visit