More than 90 volunteers and staff helped to support the American Red Cross in Greater New York response after a 5-alarm fire swept through a 107 unit building on 47th Avenue in the Sunnyside section of Queens on Wednesday, December 20, 2023.
The night of the fire, the NYC Disaster Action Team, led by Uikki-Onosai O’Bryant, Senior Disaster Program Manager for NYC, together with Response Managers Doran Bercovici, Harry Davila, Jefferson Lee, and Elias Higgs, opened a reception center at the Children’s Lab School, to register families and provide meals and supplies for the displaced residents.
On Thursday, in coordination with NYC Emergency Management, the Red Cross opened a service center at Sunnyside Community Services (43-31 39th Street, Sunnyside, New York 11104). The service center operated until Saturday, December 23, 2023.
Since the night of the fire, the Red Cross alongside partners served more than 2000 meals and snacks, and distributed dozens of toiletry kits, kits with pet supplies, and kits for kids. At the center, Red Cross team members gathered daily to support the community, including disaster health, mental health, and spiritual care volunteers; case workers; logistics team members; mass care team members; external and community relations team members; and disaster action team members.
In total, the Red Cross Greater New York registered 101 households (242 individuals) for emergency assistance, including emergency temporary lodging (39 households housed through 12/27), financial assistance, meals, and other resources to meet immediate needs.
The Red Cross is profoundly grateful to Sunnyside Community Services and to the Children’s Lab School for their hospitality and support. We also extend our thanks to all the local elected officials, community leaders, local businesses, and partner groups, including NYC Emergency Management, the Department of Housing Preservation & Development, the Department of Education, Animal Care Centers of NYC, the ASPCA, the NYPD Community Affairs Unit, and Sunnyside Shines, who supported the residents in countless ways since the fire on Wednesday, December 20, 2023.
Any impacted resident who was unable to connect with the Red Cross for assistance should call 877-RED-CROSS (877-733-2767).
All Red Cross assistance is provided free of charge and made possible by the generosity of the public. To donate to Red Cross Disaster Relief and help people affected by disasters big and small, visit www.redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS. To become a Red Cross volunteer visit www.redcross.org/volunteer.