As 2013 begins, the American Red Cross continues to help people affected by Superstorm Sandy by providing food, emotional support and assistance almost 70 days after the devastating storm made landfall.
Approximately 1,000 Red Cross workers are still on the ground supporting survivors as longer-term recovery efforts begin. Red Cross caseworkers are working with thousands of people to connect them with resources to help them recover from Sandy’s devastation. In addition, to date the Red Cross has distributed more than 6.7 million relief and clean-up items.
The Red Cross has provided more than 9.6 million meals and snacks since Sandy came ashore. In addition to serving thousands of meals each day in New York at fixed sites and from mobile distribution routes, the Red Cross is also working with partners to distribute thousands of additional food packages every day. The Red Cross is helping to fund and bolster the capacity of several community food banks to make sure people in the hardest hit areas have access to food.
PARTNERS IN ACTION Red Cross volunteers have provided more than 106,000 health and mental health services contacts for people affected by Sandy and have worked with partner organizations to help ensure assistance is available as people continue to live in difficult conditions.
One example of this work includes an urgent call to help a far Rockaways resident who was partially blind and in declining health. The man lived on one of the top floors of a high rise building and had gone without his diabetes medication for several days. Red Cross volunteers contacted area pharmacies for medication for the man. When a pharmacy turned them away, they worked with the NAACP Disaster Relief Team to get the man help. They were able to get him into a van and to a local drug store to fill a prescription for the medication the man so desperately needed.
More than 100 NAACP volunteers from all over the United States have been working with the Red Cross since the Sandy response began. These volunteers have distributed food in Breezy Point, distributed relief supplies on Coney Island, and on occasion, helped someone who needed medical assistance in the Rockaways.
DEDICATED VOLUNTEERS Sandy and Joe French are Red Cross volunteers who traveled to New York from Santa Cruz, California to help the people affected by Sandy. The cold, snowy weather couldn’t deter the dedication and compassion of the couple who spent the holidays helping victims of Sandy.
Out in the battered Rockaways, the couple’s spirits are high as they drive the Red Cross emergency response vehicle on their daily mobile feeding route. “We’ve been volunteering with the Red Cross for eight years,” French said. They are but two of the thousands of trained disaster volunteers who have traveled from all over the country to support the Red Cross Sandy relief response.