As residents of Long Island continue to cope with the effects of Hurricane Sandy four months after landfall, the American Red Cross and Island Harvest, Long Island’s largest hunger relief organization, have partnered to ensure continued delivery of meals to thousands still in need.
“Lives have been forever changed by Sandy and many are still doing what they can to make it through each day,” said John Miller, CEO of the American Red Cross on
Long Island. “Through the generosity of our donors and the expertise of respected food banks like Island Harvest, we can shift our efforts from emergency relief to recovery.”
In the months following Sandy, the Red Cross has served approximately 13 million meals and snacks across the entire region—more than 1.7 million on Long Island.
Despite this, local food banks, like Island Harvest, have seen an increased need for services. Through the partnership, the Red Cross will provide financial assistance to Island Harvest—boosting its capacity to supply the region’s food pantries, soup kitchens and emergency feeding programs.
“Many Long Islanders are still struggling with rebuilding their homes, and their lives, and Island Harvest continues to be a resource in those efforts by supplying such vital resources as food, cleaning supplies, heaters, clothing and other necessities,” said Randi Shubin Dresner, president and CEO, Island Harvest. “The partnership with the Red Cross will greatly help us in our ongoing efforts, as well as being prepared for future disasters.”
While the formal partnership is new, both agencies worked closely together in the immediate days following Sandy to deliver meals in affected neighborhoods.
“During our visits to the hurricane-stricken areas, we’ve received an outpouring of gratitude,” Dresner said. “Many residents, and first responders, expressed their thankfulness to receive fresh food, cold water, and other essential supplies. So many victims of the hurricane remain positive and their resilience is remarkable.”
A thought Miller echoed.
“This disaster is bigger than any one agency,” said Miller. “It will take time to recover but by coming together, we—as Long Islanders—will bounce back.”
To learn more about the continued Red Cross response to Hurricane Sandy, visit www.redcross.org/sandy-response.
To find out more about Island Harvest’s ongoing relief efforts, visit www.islandharvest.org.