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Red Cross Awards Sandy Grant to Help Immigrants in Staten Island

"Many people continue to face housing challenges."

The American Red Cross has awarded a $250,000 grant to Make the Road New York to provide disaster case management services for vulnerable communities in Midland Beach including immigrants and low-income households, who were affected by Superstorm Sandy.

The funding will be used to deliver long-term recovery assistance to 90 clients. Make the Road New York also will assist the foregoing by providing with housing support and coordination as part of the organization’s Sandy Recovery Support Services. The grant will fund two full-time case managers, an outreach coordinator position and a program assistant for 12 months.

“Even though Sandy hit over a year ago, for most people the recovery has barely even started, and especially renters are struggling to find a safe place to live,” said Deborah Axt, co-executive director of Make the Road New York. “Because rents have increased so much, many renters are now struggling to meet basic needs such as food for their families. We look forward to partnering with the Red Cross to address the needs of these vulnerable populations."

Make the Road New York opened a satellite office in the Midland Beach area, one of the hardest neighborhoods in Staten Island, soon after Sandy struck to help immigrants and low-income workers navigate recovery resources. Families with undocumented immigration status are ineligible for FEMA aid and also often face language barriers. Make the Road New York works to ensure that clients have access to as many services and resources as possible in order to reduce obstacles to long-term recovery.

“Many people continue to face housing challenges, and the Red Cross is proud to partner with Make the Road New York to help some of the most vulnerable families in Staten Island” said Josh Lockwood, CEO, Red Cross Greater New York Region.

Local elected officials were also pleased about Make the Road New York's collaboration with the Red Cross.

Senator Andrew Lanza said: "This partnership between the Red Cross and Make the Road New York will provide a new infusion of support to those Staten Island families still recovering from Sandy more than a year later.”

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 $309 million in donations for Sandy emergency relief and recovery efforts. As of December 31, the Red Cross has spent or committed $287 million – nearly 93 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 in Staten Island who were affected by Sandy. These partners include Staten Island Alliance, Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation and The Staten Island Foundation. Sandy recovery efforts focus on the areas of housing assistance, case management, mental health services, volunteer coordination, and food security.

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 or follow us on Twitter at @RedCrossNY.

About Make the Road New York:

Make the Road New York (MRNY) builds the power of Latino and working class communities to achieve dignity and justice through organizing, policy innovation, transformative education, and survival services. We have 14,000 members and operate four community centers in Bushwick, Brooklyn; Elmhurst, Queens; Port Richmond, Staten Island and Brentwood, Long Island.