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Saranac Lake Community collects for Sandy relief

Northeastern NY 12/19/12 Saranac Lake Community comes together for Superstorm Sandy relief

(L to R) Red Cross North Country Chapter Board Member Susan Friedmann, Exec. Director Lynn Gilbert and Restaurateur Jacob Stanbro.

After learning of the damage and devastation from Superstorm Sandy, a local restaurant owner rallied the small community of Saranac Lake, NY in fundraising efforts for Red Cross disaster relief.

Jacob Stanbro, co-owner of Nonna Fina restaurant in Saranac Lake, presented American Red Cross North Country Chapter (NCC) Executive Director Lynn Gilbert and NCC Board Member Susan Friedmann with a check for $18,419.48 yesterday afternoon.

Stanbro, initially planned for a small fundraiser within his popular establishment. Upon speaking with other members of the community and learning of their interest to help, his plans changed.

Stanbro's small idea of gathering some food to bring down to the affected areas, quickly grew. It became a town-wide effort to raise as much money as possible for relief in the communities affected by Superstorm Sandy..

Due to the rapid growth of his fundraiser, Stanbro realized that logistically he was going to need some help, so he contacted Gilbert.

Stanbro said that calling Gilbert was his "saving grace" because she pointed him in the direction of a monetary donation to the Red Cross disaster relief efforts, rather than an in-kind donation that would be difficult to deliver to those affected by Sandy.

"I am extremely grateful for all of the hard work that Lynn and the American Red Cross have done to help our fundraising efforts go to the right place," said Stanbro.

"It was a pleasure working with Jake on this project and we at the American Red Cross are so grateful for the fundraising efforts of the Saranac Lake Community," said Gilbert.

Special recognition for assistance in this effort goes to: Barbara Rice, owner of Rice Furniture; Gregory Moore, owner of Bear Essentials; the Saranac Rotary Foundation; the Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce and the entire Saranac Lake community.

Thanks to the public's generous support, the American Red Cross has provided food, shelter, relief supplies and comfort to thousands of people impacted by Sandy. Our work includes:

Serving more than 9 million meals and snacks.

Handing out more than 6.7 million relief items, including cold weather items and clean-up supplies.

Providing more than 103,000 health services and emotional support contacts for people who have been living in very tough conditions.

Connecting with more than 93,000 families and individuals to determine recovery needs and provide access to resources

Mobilizing more than 15,800 trained workers to help people affected by Sandy. About 90 percent of them are volunteers from all over the country.

Overall, a range of groups provided more than 158,000 shelter stays for Sandy, and the Red Cross provided more than 81,000 of those stays.

More than 1,400 Red Cross workers are still on the ground supporting survivors through our relief work even as we begin our longer-term recovery efforts.

The Red Cross is providing food, water, relief supplies, health services and emotional support in some areas.

Trained Red Cross workers are also helping to connect people to recovery resources and working with community groups to identify available support.

The Red Cross is focused on how we can help support long-term recovery efforts as the need for emergency services declines.

Any funds donated for Hurricane Sandy beyond what is needed for emergency relief will be put to use serving the long-term needs of communities and individuals affected by this disaster.