Posts Tagged ‘Staten Island’

Sandy Recovery: So Much Going On You Need a Road Map

Friday, November 30th, 2012

By Alice Kenny

After Hurricane Sandy tore through Staten Island, visits to this, the least populated and accessible of all New York City’s five boroughs, have multiplied in ways not seen since the Verrazano Narrows Bridge connected it to the rest of the city

“There is so much going on at the same time that you need a road map,” said Joe Panepinto, who, as director of Catholic Charities Staten Island Services is helping lead the hurricane recovery response.

Yesterday, US Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis flew in from Washington DC to visit with day laborers who are assisted by Catholic Charities and have been active in hurricane cleanup efforts. Mayor Michael Bloomberg drove over from Manhattan to announce interim property tax relief for storm-battered homeowners at the Staten Island Disaster Relief Center manned by Catholic Charities staff and others every day, Monday through Sunday, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.  And Staten Island Borough President Guy Molinari along with FEMA hosted a town hall meeting attended by Catholic Charities staff and packed by residents still reeling from the super storm.

Now as the immediate shock from Sandy’s devastation lessons, government leaders, local residents, Catholic Charities, parishes and communities are rolling up their sleeves to focus on the difficult issue of ensuring long-term recovery.  Catholic Charities is manning the front lines.

Want more information? Contact us at cccontactus@archny.org.

Volunteers and Staff Ignore Rotting Debris to Help Hurricane Victims Rebuild

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

By Alice Kenny

Donning face masks, work gloves and sheer determination, Catholic Charities staff worked with 24 volunteers it had mobilized to remove sheetrock, flooring and furniture in Midland Beach Staten Island homes destroyed by the super storm.

They ignored smells of rotting food and sewage, said Damian Buzzerio, one of the Catholic Charities staff members who joined the crew, to stuff garbage bags with debris left from the Hurricane’s destruction.

Catholic Charities Staten Island staff identified homeowners who needed help to recover from the hurricane.

Click here to watch a video of their efforts.

From Budgeting to Business Help, Catholic Charities Connects Sandy Victims to Local Resources

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

By Alice Kenny

At the NYC Restoration Center on Staten Island, there are several social service providers available to offer assistance and information to victims of Hurricane Sandy. As the only Staten Island-based provider at the center, Catholic Charities plays an essential role in helping people get the information they need because its case workers are especially knowledgeable about local resources.

The areas of service Catholic Charities covers at the center are varied. Counselors connect people to local organizations and community resources and help them understand and access public benefits. They also offer budget counseling to those who are starting over and need to figure out how to manage their finances in a situation they hadn’t planned for. In addition to helping people navigate the complex processes of filing for service from FEMA and Rapid Repairs, case workers help business owners apply for assistance from the Small Business Administration.

For those who would simply like to tell their stories to an empathetic listener, counselors are also on hand to comfort victims.

To contribute to ongoing recovery efforts:

Text SANDY to 85944 to make a one-time $10 donation.

Manning the frontlines; Catholic Charities takes the forefront of Hurricane Sandy Relief

Tuesday, November 20th, 2012

Mayor Michael Bloomberg shakes hands with Catholic Charities Staten Island Director Michelle LaVignera at the Staten Island Restoration Center.

By Alice Kenny

Catholic Charities is manning the frontlines, going door to door and staffing newly established restoration centers to help those hurt by Hurricane Sandy.

Staff are assisting at the New York City Restoration Centers now open every day, Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., in neighborhoods hardest hit by the super storm.  The Centers provide a single site to gather information, referral and support from government programs such as FEMA, private programs such as homeowners insurance and nonprofit and volunteer services.

Catholic Charities staff and volunteers have also mobilized to canvas the needs of homeowners struggling in neighborhoods hardest hit by the super storm.  This past weekend volunteers fanned out throughout Midland Beach in Staten Island, knocked on residents’ doors, assessed needs, and brought food, water, and other supplies from the Catholic Charities donation and distribution outpost established at the Disaster Assistance Service Center at the Mission of the Immaculate Virgin (MIV) Mount Loreto in Staten Island.

We are here to serve the multiple needs of everyone in the community, non-Catholics and Catholics alike.

We are here now and we will be here for the long term.

Do you need help?

Come to our new Disaster Relief Site:

1976 Hylan Blvd

Staten Island 10306

Call Catholic Charities Toll-free Helpline: (888) 744-7900

Click here for more resources and information

Would you like to help others recover?

Text SANDY to 85944 to make a one-time $10 donation


Cardinal Dolan Visits Sandy Recovery Centers on Staten Island as Archdiocese Continues Sandy Relief Efforts

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

By Alice Kenny

Nearly three weeks after Sandy left the New York area, victims are still struggling to rebuild their lives. On Saturday, November 17th, Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director of Catholic Charities New York, visited disaster recovery sites and Holy Rosary Parish on Staten Island to continue assessing ongoing needs and providing help to individuals and families.

Mount Manresa, a temporary housing facility for Sandy victims, is currently housing 30 families who lost their homes. At FEMA’s NYC Restoration Center on Hylan Boulevard, Catholic Charities workers are staffing the case management service at the center.

Catholic Charities, in conjunction with parishes and communities, will continue assisting Sandy victims with everything from the basics like food and clothing to long-term services such as counseling and legal assistance.

“We know that it will take time for people to be able to put all of the pieces of their lives back together, but the Church – our parishes, Catholic Charities, the Al Smith Foundation, and so many dedicated volunteers – will be there with them every step of the way,” Cardinal Dolan said. “I am particularly grateful to those who contributed to our Sandy relief fund, because that will enable us to provide direct assistance to those who need it most right now.”

The Sandy Relief Fund, which has so far raised close to $1 million for relief efforts, is being distributed to the parishes so pastors can put the money directly into immediate services the nearly 1000 families and individuals need.

If you’d like to contribute to the ongoing relief efforts:

Text SANDY to 85944 to make a one-time $10 donation

Chased from their homes by Hurricane Sandy, families find shelter and safety.

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

By Alice Kenny

A father whose home in Midland Beach was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy sat in the main lounge of Mt. Manresa Jesuit Retreat House’s in Staten Island on November 7, the night of the nor’easter, watching out the window as his young daughter laughed and made snowmen with other children.  Just over one week earlier, the dad huddled on his roof with his three young children while storm winds whipped around them and waves lapped their feet.

”I’m so glad she can be out here and all she’s thinking about is snow balls and snow men and going to school tomorrow,” he told the retreat house Executive Director Fred Herron.

Thirty-one families chased from their homes in Midland Beach, Staten Island, one of the neighborhood hardest hit by the super storm, have found shelter and safety at Mt. Manresa, the oldest retreat house for laity in the United States.

“People say to me that ‘I’m not Catholic but I feel special here; I feel safe here,’” Mr. Herron told Catholic Charities Executive Director Msgr. Kevin Sullivan on JustLove, Catholic Charities weekly radio program. Listen to their conversation aired today, November 17, on Sirius XM Channel 129.

People come to Catholic Charities to learn what can be done fast and what can be done now.

Friday, November 16th, 2012

By Alice Kenny

More than 400,000 people whose homes were damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Sandy are lining up for help with the federal FEMA program, the local New York City Rapid Repair program and other first responders.  They come to Catholic Charities to find out what can be done fast and what can be done now, said Michelle LaVignera, director of Staten Island Social Services for Catholic Charities, who, along with staff and volunteers, is helping them navigate the process.

In Staten Island, one of the hardest-hit areas by the super storm, Catholic Charities set up an information booth at the New York City Restoration Center at 1976 Highland Blvd, a main hub established so that hurricane victims can get services and support from first responders at a single site.

Catholic Charities is also offering food and supplies through its mobile food pantry and information and support at the Staten Island Catholic Charities agency MIV / Mt. Loreto.  And now, as temperatures drop and mold becomes an increasing concern, Catholic Charities is obtaining infrared heaters to distribute among those in need.

“Our main focus now is serving people in crisis,” Ms. LaVignera said.  “But we are also planning for the future.  Since we are an agency with locations in Staten Island we will be here long term.”

Catholic Charities Mobilizes Disaster Response Despite Nor’Easter

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Catholic Charities persisted with its disaster-relief mobilization as a nor’easter whipped through the New York region yesterday, dumped a half-foot of snow and took a sucker punch at neighborhoods still reeling from the super storm’s destruction.  Staff continued going door to door by foot and in the Catholic Charities Rusty Staub Mobile Food Pantry to hand out non-perishable food and cleaning supplies to people stricken by the storm.  Catholic Charities, teaming up with FEMA and other first responders, is also manning disaster relief centers that are being established throughout the region.

 

Looking for help?

  • In Westchester County, visit the Emergency Operation Center opening today, November 8, 2012, at Westchester County Center, at 198 Central Ave., White Plains, NY 10606.
  • In Staten Island, visit the Disaster Assistance Service Center at  Mission of the Immaculate Virgin (MIV) Mount Loretto at 6581 Hylan Blvd. at Sharrotts Road in Staten Island, NY  10309.

Need advise with photos to prepare for an insurance claim?

  • When possible, take photos of all destroyed property BEFORE you begin reconstruction
  • If you have already begun reconstruction, take photos of the dumpster where you placed sheetrock and other destroyed property.
  • Make sure to take photos that show your home in the background.

Click here for more resources and information.

Catholic Charities Mobilizes Response to Hurricane Sandy

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

Multi-prong approach pulls together staff and volunteers to serve those hardest hit.

As soon as Hurricane Sandy hit the New York area, Catholic Charities volunteers and case workers took action.  Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director of Catholic Charities New York, offered the agency’s help at an emergency shelter for hurricane victims at John Jay College and spoke with survivors on Staten Island.  Msgr. Sullivan participated with Governor Andrew Cuomo in distributing emergency food at the New York City Armory on Saturday.

Catholic Charities mobilized staff this past weekend and coordinated with 136 volunteers to reach out to people whose homes were flooded and livelihoods ruined in Staten Island’s Midland Beach.  It  served meals on Sunday for hungry New Yorkers  at Cardinal Spellman Center in Lower Manhattan.  Case managers hand-delivered disaster relief information including safety tips and shelter lists and provided support to individuals, parishes and communities, non Catholics and Catholics alike, throughout Staten Island, Lower Manhattan and Westchester County and communities without electricity.  This included Holy Rosary Parish in the South Beach section of Staten Island, an area particularly hard hit by the hurricane.

The Catholic Charities agencies in conjunction with the entire Archdiocese of New York is working closely with FEMA and other first responders to maximize resources available to those hit hard by the storm. The Mission of the Immaculate Virgin (MIV) Center is open as a disaster relief center effective Tuesday, November 6, 2012.

“Catholic Charities has been in the forefront of helping the disaster victims,” said Executive Director of Catholic Charities Monsignor Kevin Sullivan.  “Our workers, trained in disaster response, are prepared to meet the human needs such disasters cause.”

 

Feeding the Hungry After Sandy: Emergency Food Distribution in NYC

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

On Saturday, November 3rd, Catholic Charities Executive Director Monsignor Kevin Sullivan participated with Governor Andrew Cuomo and Senator Chuck Schumer in the loading and distribution of emergency food at a New York City Armory in Manhattan. Catholic Charities staff and volunteers from around the city, in collaboration with other non-profit organizations, handed out emergency food and water to those suffering continuing hardships caused by Hurricane Sandy. Catholic Charities made a concerted effort to visit every home in one of the hardest hit areas of Midland Beach on Staten Island.

As Margaret Purvis, CEO of the Food Bank For New York City, noted, some people still had no water as of yesterday, so this donation was vital.

“We cannot plan a future if we’re hungry today,” she said. “These resources are needed on the ground, and because of today, we’re going to get them out there.”

As the immediate crises of power and flooding are dealt with, Catholic Charities is responding to the ongoing human needs caused by Sandy – particularly on Staten Island and Lower Manhattan. The entire community continues to demonstrate the resilience New Yorkers are famous for, along with the willingness to help neighbors in need.

If you’d like to help New Yorkers affected by the storm, donate to recovery efforts at www.catholiccharitiesny.org/donate or sign up to volunteer at www.catholiccharitiesnyvolunteer.org