Over a week that saw arctic temperatures sweep through our area, American Red Cross disaster responders supplemented its ongoing Sandy relief efforts by driving to affected areas to assess needs and distribute blankets to Sandy affected residents who were experiencing heat issues in their homes and apartments.
Workers drove Red Cross vehicles to areas including the Rockaways and the heavily impacted South Beach, Midland Beach, Cedar Grove Beach, Fox Beach and New Dorp Beach in Staten Island.
“On Arverne Boulevard and Beach 57th Street in Far Rockaway, people told us they had only intermittent heat and were using towels and drapes on windows to help keep the cold from penetrating their homes,” said Tracy Duncan, public affairs representative for the American Red Cross. “They seemed grateful to receive blankets that would supply them with a little extra warmth.”
The Red Cross distributed nearly 1,000 blankets, as well as water, heater meals and hot chocolate to those still feeling the effects of Sandy.
Since Sandy hit, the Red Cross has close to 7 million meals and snacks residents .of Greater New York, distributed more than 5 million bulk cleaning supplies, clean-up kits, comfort kits, toiletries and additional materials and contacted more than 70,000 people contacted in-person outreach to assess their needs including counseling and referrals to organizations and agencies including FEMA.
Photo: Greater New York volunteers Richard Sanford, left, and Matthew Huff, right, hand blankets to residents of The Rockaways, Queens. During the coldest time of the year, these residents were experiencing sporadic heat in their apartments.