On Saturday, November 10, Grammy Award-winning musician John Legend and Amar'e Stoudemire of the New York Knicks joined over 200 volunteers tat the Thirftway parking lot on Mott Avenue. There the volunteers distributed clothing, toiletries and food.
Some other volunteers helped clean the streets and went door-to-door in high-rise apartment buildings to check on elderly residents.
In addition to the supplies, nurses were on site to help anyone who needed medical assistance or first aid.
Reshma Saujani, former deputy public advocate of New York City, organized the event.
“Today shows the power of New Yorkers advocating for New Yorkers,” she said. “While the devastation presents incredible challenges for residents, I hope that these volunteer efforts show them that the people of New York will be there to help them every step of the way.”
While out in the Rockways Stoudemire used social media to spread the word and encouraged others to continue or begin volunteering throughout New York City.
Legend joined Stoudemire, tweeting “Went out to Far Rockaway this morning to view the aftermath of sandy and distributed food. Still no power out there, Keep giving. They need you.”
With a strong focus on keeping people fed and warm, Sanjuani said that the short-term solutions are important, but organizers need to start thinking about the long haul.
“We also need to focus on rebuilding and making sure this community is sustainable over the long-term,” she said. “Getting small business up running again is a huge priority, and not just for healing the economy but also for lifting the spirit of the community.”