November 26, 2012
1. Save the Fire Station in Broad Channel
The Broad Channel Volunteer Fire Department and Ambulance Corp. has protected the life and property of local residents since 1905. Departments across the country have helped replace the fire trucks and ambulances destroyed by Hurricane Sandy, but the fire station was flooded with six feet of water and is in desperate need of repair.
The group is trying to raise $55,000 so that it can replace damaged siding/sheetrock/insulation, conduct mold remediation, repair the engine room, replace the boiler and electric wiring that was submerged in salt water. Please help the Broad Channel Volunteer Fire Department to serve Broad Channel in a safe building.
If you’d like to donate, or for more information, click here.
November 22, 2012
Thanksgiving is here and it’s amazing to me how hard people are working to make it a day of gratitude - and delicious turkey - for everyone in New York City.
This week I posted a list of Thanksgiving-related volunteer opportunities, but there’s still much to be done if you and your family want to spend some of the day helping other people.
1. Occupy Sandy needs drivers to run meals to distribution sites. They also need hotel pans, tents, and other supplies . Check out their site for more information.
2. An Occupy Sandy guy named Fab says he wants live music for a Thanksgiving block party he’s organizing today in Sheepshead Bay at the corner of Emmons and Brown. Due to the lack of power, you gotta be an acoustic act that can get loud, but Sheepshead Bay needs some love. If you want to play or help in the neighborhood, contact Fab at 575-779-5899
3. It them a long time (LONG time) but the Red Cross is here and doing their part. In some places they’re absent and in some places - like Sheepshead Bay and Coney Island - they’ve been the primary force serving hot meals. They’re hosting a three-day people-feeding event (which they call a “bulk distribution event” for that feedlot feel…) starting today; and they need volunteers. You can sign up here.
4. Today, Coney Recovers needs volunteers to help distribute Thanksgiving meals to thousands of residents. Please RSVP here to volunteer. (via Bill DiBlasio)
5. The Imperial Room (located Inwood, NY on the Queens/Long Island border) will be hosting a Thanksgiving Dinner for their neighbors in the Rockaways. Volunteers are needed to help set-up and serve dinner. Please RSVP here to volunteer. (via Bill DiBlasio)
6. Post a message of support to first responders who helped people survive the storm. The Public Advocate’s office put together a site where you can post messages of support and gratitude. It’s very touching so only read all the messages if you want to get all verklempt. (If you have a heart of stone then this won’t be a problem.) Wouldn’t it be a lovely Thanksgiving day activity to sit with the kids and write a nice note to the total badasses who saved this city? Some suggestions… the National Guard, the volunteers who came ‘round with cupcakes, your neighbors who worked at the Park Slope Armory, the Occupy Sandy guy who put you in a car to the Rockaways, THE SANITATION DEPARTMENT WORKERS WHO ARE GETTING NO CREDIT BUT WHO HAVE BEEN THE MOST AMAZING PEOPLE EVER, Johnny Bravo for offering Red Bull and succor to the masses.
1. The Thanksgiving fly around
So much to do before the holiday… buying food, booking tickets, renting cars, peeling all that damn squash. And sharing the holiday with your fellow New Yorkers. Here are a few opportunities that some of you may be able to work into this hectic week.
1. Fall food crawl (via Food to Eat)
FoodtoEat is hosting a Sandy benefit crawl today from 12-4pm to get people to restaurants that need your business. Tickets can be purchased online or at a Evelyn Drinkery: 171 Ave C.
Sales go to a donation pot that will be split between participating venues and used for their recovery efforts.
"Food Crawlers" receive a map of the participating venues after they buy a ticket, and from 3-4pm everyone meets at Kafana for an "after party" including entertainment and a raffle.
Buy your ticket online here.
I wondered about this yesterday as stories came in about lung killing mold and seniors with medical problems trapped in public housing projects. How long will it be before Sandy morphs from natural disaster into a public health crisis?
Now a volunteer with Occupy Sandy name Eric Moed, an architect who lives in Clinton Hill, has been tweeting at public officials about the terrible conditions in the Coney Island housing projects. He tells the Huffington Post:
The situation in public housing projects in Coney Island, Brooklyn remains a “humanitarian crisis” in which the government and the Red Cross have been nearly completely absent… Moed says all of the supermarkets on Coney Island have been flooded or looted.
Catherine O’Leary, a registered nurse from Mamaroneck, and Matt Richter, a photographer from NYC, spent Sunday in Coney Island, which has been relatively forgotten when compared with the Rockaways and Staten Island (which, despite the press and the widespread volunteer efforts and the celebrities, are still utter disaster area shit shows).
If you’ve gone into the projects in the Rockaways or Coney Island, then you get what they heard and smelled and saw. Richter’s stunning photos (from Coney and other places) are here. O’Leary’s entire account is here (and it’s a very good read). Below is an excerpt.
Let me explain, this was not your typical day of providing home health aid. The project buildings are still without electricity! The hallways are completely dark and there is stagnant sea water still in the buildings. It is COLD! The elevators don’t work and you must climb cold, dark stairwells with only a small flashlight. The smell of gas is overpowering as remaining residents use stove top flames to try to get warm. The wonderful people I met had simple requests for hot food and more water. They asked over and over “when would help be coming, why had they been forgotten”. I monitored blood pressures and assessed blood sugars – but felt helpless when I couldn’t offer refills of medications or insulin. Most of residents were elderly or disabled – some immobile or wheelchair bound. There were infant babies wrapped in blankets with coughs and no way to get warm. I spent most of the day lugging buckets and cases of water up numerous dark stairwells. I gave hugs and listened to stories from lonely, disenfranchised individuals who just want to be heard.
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
"The legendary Coney Island roller coaster was covered with some ocean muck, but the city-owned ride survived Hurricane Sandy’s wrath unscathed, according to operator Central Amusements."
Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012
1. Head to Coney Island (via everywhere)
If you’ve been to Coney Island and looked beyond Luna Park you’ve no doubt noticed that high rises dominate the landscape. Those building blocks are full of elderly and disabled residents who need your help. An Occupy Sandy volunteer is predicting a humanitarian crisis could consume the area, and frankly I don’t think he’s wrong.