Helping Superstorm Sandy Survivors

Form email from Civic Action:

… People still don’t have power or water, basements are still flooded, gas shortages have made it hard to run generators, and temperatures are getting down into the 30s. MoveOn members who have volunteered have told us about finding families wet and shivering in the cold, and meeting people who’ve stopped eating because they don’t have anywhere to relieve themselves.

Many of the worst-off places—Staten Island, the Jersey Shore, Long Island, and New York City neighborhoods like the Rockaways and Red Hook—are home to hundreds of thousands of working class and poor families. Families that don’t have the resources to get a hotel room, or take weeks off from work, or wait in gas lines for 7 hours.

It’s gotten so bad that Doctors Without Borders has set up their first-ever disaster relief effort in the U.S. MoveOn members across the tri-state area have been pitching in. But now we’re asking MoveOn members across the country to help.

Community organizations are doing some of the best relief work—providing hot meals, distributing supplies, helping residents dig out—and they could desperately use our help. We’ve identified a few making a huge impact. Can you chip in to help them? Civic Action will cover the credit card fees so every dollar of your donation goes to these organizations helping people in dire need…

Here’s the donation link. If you prefer to donate directly, or want to volunteer, the groups MoveOn is channeling funds to are Island Harvest, Red Hook Initiative, Make the Road New York, New York Communities for Change, and the Community Foodbank of New Jersey.

Linked Outside magazine article:

A BLOCK IN FROM what remained of the beach and its shattered boardwalk, in a community meeting room on the ground floor of the darkened Ocean Village apartment towers, the international humanitarian-aid group Doctors Without Borders had set up an emergency clinic with a volunteer staff of a dozen or so doctors, nurses, and assorted health professionals. A folding table was piled high with medical supplies, and a sheet strung up in a corner created a makeshift private screening area. An empty Starbucks jug doubled as an ad hoc sharps disposal container. Misha Friedman, a Moldovan photographer in his thirties with a shaved head—a veteran of Doctors Without Borders missions from Sudan to Uzbekistan—was briefing a pair of volunteers about the dire health situation faced by 800 senior residents in a nearby housing complex who had had no running water or electricity for a week.

“No one’s been evacuated,” he told me. “There is no evacuation. Doctors have been flooded out, pharmacies have been closed. Some patients are on dozens of medications, and they kind of fall off the grid.”

All across Far Rockaway, high up in the darkened towers and out in the flooded houses, scores of sick and elderly people, cut off from access to their doctors and medical care, needed help. When the clinic door opened at 10 a.m., there was already a group of patients waiting….

Prior to MSF’s arrival, much of the relief work was done by a highly organized group that had arrived on the scene earlier than most: Occupy Sandy. A new iteration of the lower Manhattan based anti-one-percent group, Occupy Sandy was incredibly fast and organized in its response, bringing food and supplies to hard-hit areas like New Dorp, Staten Island, and Red Hook, Brooklyn, as the official response only began. And it wasn’t slowing down; a week into the crisis, Occupy Sandy’s massive Rockaways relief effort looked like a DIY version of the Normandy landings. Its early reports of the dire medical need in Far Rockaway had helped stir Doctors Without Borders to action…

20 replies
  1. 1
    imonlylurking says:

    Occupy Sandy has a list of needed items up at Amazon, under their wedding registry. They’re asking for things like disposable plastic gloves, trash bags, blankets, and diapers. You can ship directly to the church they are using as a distribution site.

  2. 2
    Maude says:

    The Red Cross is around as well.
    Send money to the Red Cross if you can.
    NYC also has housing projects with no power.
    I haven’t read dire stories about NJ, but it could be because a lot of people who were dislodged have money.

  3. 3
    mai naem says:

    This is pathetic and depressing. Isn’t this what the fvcking government is for? Why doesn’t somebody grab Mitchy McConnell by his triple chin and shove him to Far Rockaway and explain why Mitt Romney needs to only pay 10 percent in taxes. Jeezus. I am sick and tired of these stories that make us look like a freaking third world country.

  4. 4
    Geoduck says:

    @mai naem: “look like”?

  5. 5
    Cermet says:

    So, has the lame stream media said ONE FUCKING WORD about these hero’s – the Occupy Sandy!? Of course not – the media is, remains and always will be rightwing loving money hungry, and ass licker’s of the 0.01%

  6. 6
    NotMax says:

    Always recommend donations to Operation USA, whose track record is stellar and who strive to spend the minimum needed for administrative expenses and direct the maximum to actual aid and skilled on-the-ground operations.

  7. 7
    Culture of Truth says:

    @Geoduck: yes, because the U.S. is still the richest country in the world.

  8. 8
    Mnemosyne says:

    Another place that has wishlists up at is Covenant House in New Jersey — I sent them some of the requested diapers today.

  9. 9
    gex says:

    The Ali Forney Center for homeless GLBT youth was destroyed. And they had already had funding cuts from the state. Gotta cut spending you know!

    These kids have already been rejected by their families, so maybe consider them as well.

  10. 10
    PurpleGirl says:

    1) Con Edison is a private, INVESTOR-owned utility. Years of cutting staff have left it without the necessary crews to keep trees and plants in check, with the manpower to check for downed wires after storms.

    2) Bloomberg initially told FEMA the City wouldn’t their help. Later he came back and asked them for help. He also turned away President Obama’s outreach for a tour of the disaster areas.

    3) Without power gas stations couldn’t pump gas.

    4) Having transit down for many days didn’t help.

    5) Having the tunnels closed for many days made the connections to Manhattan that much harder for everybody.

    6) If stores can’t get deliveries, they run out of food. Even my local K-Food had problems getting bread; still today, they have little bread. (My apartment complex has its own power plant and we had no flooding in our area; K-Food has had problem with deliveries.)

    7) Which problem do you work on first? Obviously, the Bloomberg administration hadn’t planned very well as to how to start a clean-up effort and what to do first.

  11. 11
    kc says:

    Thanks for this.

    I can’t believe those people are still without electricity.

  12. 12
    russell says:

    just sent $100 to occupy sandy

  13. 13
    Culture of Truth says:

    It seems to me a situation like this has only 2 solutions:

    1. Get the power on.
    2. Get the people out.

  14. 14
    SuperHrefna says:

    I’ve been volunteering at Long Island’s first food bank, Long Island Cares, all this week. We supply over 580 food pantries & soup kitchens in Nassau & Suffolk counties & are working with the Red Cross & FEMA on disaster relief. Since I’m a trained volunteer there’s a lot I can do, so I just cleared by schedule & spent the week there doing it. And if need be I’ll do the same next week. There is so much need in our community. Long Island had a serious hunger problem before Sandy, and besides all the devastation you see on tv practically everyone on the Island lost power & thus all their perishable food. Since most people live paycheck to paycheck (cost of living is out of control here, but that’s another discussion) they absolutely cannot afford to lose this food. The need is monumental. If you can please send LI Cares a donation: I can tell you that I’ve volunteered all my life & this is the single best run organization I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. Your money is sorely needed & will be put to very good use.

  15. 15
    Chyron HR says:


    Here’s a friendly suggestion: In 2016, maybe you should nominate someone who actually does something when he’s behind in every swing state poll, rather than dismissing them all because he thinks he’s the Messiah foretold by Joseph Smith Jr.

  16. 16
    Mnemosyne says:


    I thought new efficient FEMA under Obama has got this all covered.

    It always astonishes me that you mock Democrats for supposedly believing that Obama is the Messiah while simultaneously believing that he controls the weather and could turn the electricity back on with a wave of his hand if he wanted to.

  17. 17
    NotMax says:


    I thought new efficient FEMA under Obama has got this all covered.

    Mandatory Princess bride reference:

    This word “thought” that you use…

  18. 18
    SuperHrefna says:

    You want to know how bad things are here? We’re resorting to Gangnam Style parodies. I give you: LIPA style

  19. 19
    Narcissus says:

    The truth is you need a constantly functioning emergency apparatus. If it has to be rebuilt every time a Democrat is in office, it’s never going to be big enough or experienced enough to actually deal with the huge scope of natural disasters.

    Of course, I’m sure if you tried to create an established emergency apparatus with organizational and structural continuity, conservatives would call it preparations for a concentration camp and lock up the legislature. Because they’re fucking nuts.

  20. 20
    Jerzy Russian says:

    I’m in for $100.

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