The American Red Cross has awarded a $500,000 grant to Food Bank For New York City to support recovery services for senior citizens affected by Superstorm Sandy in parts of Staten Island, Brooklyn and Queens.
Funding will be used to help an estimated 5,680 senior citizens with benefits, including enrollment in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the Senior Citizens Rent Increase Exemption Program, Voluntary Income Tax Assistance (VITA), a senior grocery program and other benefits for Sandy-affected seniors. Food Bank For New York City will provide grants, program support and training to community-based organizations that will deliver these services to seniors, specifically in the east and south shores of Staten Island, Coney Island, Red Hook and Far Rockaway.
“Hurricane Sandy has been devastating for many of our neighbors in need. Recovery has been especially difficult for our frail elderly living in the storm surge areas who were already vulnerable to hunger and poverty before the storm,” said Margarette Purvis, president and CEO of Food Bank For New York City. “The grant from American Red Cross will allow Food Bank and our citywide network of member charities to connect seniors to resources to support their recovery, including SNAP (food stamps), tax services and other benefits they need to sustain themselves as they continue to recover from the storm.”
The Food Bank For New York City previously had received $4.48 million from the Red Cross to support emergency feeding services for people affected by Sandy throughout the five boroughs.
“The Red Cross is committed to helping all Sandy survivors recover, and continuing our partnership with the Food Bank For New York City will increase our ability to help the most vulnerable people affected by the storm,” said Josh Lockwood, CEO, Red Cross Greater New York Region.
Superstorm Sandy is the largest U.S. operation by the Red Cross in more than five years, and thanks to the public’s generous support, the Red Cross has received $308 million in donations for Sandy emergency relief and recovery efforts. As of September 30, the Red Cross has spent or committed $280 million – more than 90 percent of the donated funds.
The Red Cross has partnered with and funded numerous community-based organizations to support the recovery of individuals and families affected by Sandy. These partners include Brooklyn Community
Foundation, City Harvest, Community Development Fund of Long Island, Cooper Square Committee, Disability Opportunity Fund, Feeding America, Food Bank For New York City, FEGS Health & Human Services, Friends of Rockaway, Health and Welfare Council of Long Island, Henry Street Settlement, Island Harvest, Jewish Community Council of Rockaway Peninsula, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, National Baptist Convention USA, National Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters, New York Disaster Interfaith Services, Operation Hope, Points of Light Foundation, Salvation Army, Save the Children, The Staten Island Foundation, Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, United Way of Long Island, Visiting Nurse Service of New York and World Cares Center on Sandy recovery efforts in the areas of housing assistance, case management, mental health services, volunteer coordination and food security. Additional community grants will be announced in the weeks ahead.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCrossNY.
About Food Bank For New York City:
Food Bank For New York City recognizes 30 years as the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end food poverty throughout the five boroughs. As the city’s hub for integrated food poverty assistance, Food Bank tackles the hunger issue on three fronts — food distribution, income support and nutrition education — all strategically guided by its research. Through its network of community-based member programs citywide, Food Bank helps provide 400,000 free meals a day for New Yorkers in need. Food Bank’s hands-on nutrition education program in the public schools reaches thousands of children, teens and adults. Income support services including food stamps, free tax assistance for the working poor and the Earned Income Tax Credit put millions of dollars back in the pockets of low-income New Yorkers, helping them to achieve greater dignity and independence. Learn how you can help at foodbanknyc.org.