As the New Year begins, donations to the American Red Cross for people affected by Superstorm Sandy continue to be put to work every day in hard-hit communities across the Greater NY Region. The Red Cross is collaborating with community-based organizations like Friends of Rockaway and the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation to help low-to-moderate income homeowners restore their homes to livable conditions.
The work of both organizations is being done in conjunction with St. Bernard Project (SBP), which is serving as a strategic management partner. SBP is a disaster recovery organization, established following Hurricane Katrina.
Through support from a Red Cross grant of $721,550 last summer, Friends of Rockaway has provided carpentry, electrical or plumbing services to nearly 40 homes damaged by Sandy. The organization estimates it begins work on an additional three homes each week. Through the grant, Friends of Rockaway expects to be able to assist as many as 90 homeowners in the Rockaway Peninsula with local, skilled labor – plumbers, electricians, carpenters and handy men.
“Friends of Rockaway is doing the work, but we’re nothing without the Red Cross,” said Todd Miner, director, Friends of Rockaway. “We can’t get out here and actually work without the money that allows these skilled trade crews to get out here and do it.”
Another key partner of the Red Cross in Sandy recovery, the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, continues to make progress on damaged homes each day. As of Jan. 1, 2014, the organization has completed repair jobs that involved plumbing, framing and electrical work on more than 30 homes.
"Without the skilled labor that the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation has been able to hire as a result of the grant from the American Red Cross, more than 30 families affected by Sandy would not be back in their homes,” said Frank Siller, chairman and CEO, Tunnel to Towers. “The Red Cross has been a blessing to the Staten Island Community."
Tunnel to Towers is using funding from a $721,550 Red Cross grant, awarded in October, to hire local, skilled labor – plumbers, electricians and carpenters – over the next year to help repair up to 110 homes on the East and South Shores of Staten Island.
“We’re proud to partner with great organizations like Friends of Rockaway and Tunnel to Towers that are working hard to help people whose lives and homes were devastated by Sandy,” said Josh Lockwood, CEO, Red Cross Greater New York Region. “Sandy was a major event and by working together, we are able to help more and more people every day.”