Thousands of volunteers have fanned out this weekend across towns and neighborhoods still reeling from damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. In Brooklyn’s Red Hook, for example, New Yorkers and visitors hauled out debris from flooded basements and handed out blankets and warm clothes from church steps and garages. At shelters in Park Slope, locals were helping the ill and the elderly with basic human necessities such as using the bathroom and brushing the teeth. In Coney Island, teams of volunteers carried food and water to residents stranded in high rise buildings still without power. Sandy’s victims need all the help they can get. According to the latest estimates, more than 1.3 million homes and business along the East Coast are still without electricity.
GE and its employees have been helping out, too. GE Foundation gave $1 million to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund and another $100,000 to the United Way of America for local community needs. The company will also match in full employee donations to the American Red Cross and other disaster relief organizations. GE volunteers have also reached out to local non-profits to help on the ground.
“While state and local governments as well as relief organization are still in the middle of determining the exact needs as a result of Hurricane Sandy, we have employees, customers and neighbors who have lost or damaged homes, or who are still living without power,” said Bob Corcoran, vice president of GE Foundation. “Through our partner relief organizations, GE can help those in need in the aftermath and we will.”
In addition to the Sandy relief donations, the GE Foundation supports disaster relief through a $1 million grant to the American Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program. The money helps the Red Cross mount an immediate response to any disaster and help people who are affected by it. GE also helps local communities through more than $8 million in contributions to 500 United Way organizations throughout the United States and in other countries.
Friends in Need: Hundreds of volunteers traveled to Brooklyn’s Red Hook neighborhood to help clearing out flooded basements and handing out water, food, and warm clothing.