Just over a year ago, on October 29th, Hurricane Sandy touched down in New Jersey just south of Atlantic City. An estimated 160 people were killed in the U.S alone, and 69 more throughout Canada and the Caribbean. Thousands were displaced from their homes and an estimated 650,000 structures including at least 366,000 structures in New York and New Jersey were damaged. Today the rebuilding effort is ongoing and the residents of 27,000 households in New York and New Jersey are still displaced.
More than half of the world’s population lives in urban areas and by 2020 10.4 percent of this population is expected to live in “mega-cities” – 10 million people or more increasing the exposure to more extreme storms, especially in coastal areas like those impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
The effort to rebuild homes lost to Sandy has not been a quick or easy one. This week we highlight the organizations that were on the ground providing emergency assistance after Sandy and have stayed committed to the long-term recovery of the affected communities. Listed below are some of the organizations working on the rebuilding efforts and ways you can contribute.
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Rebuilding Together – everyone deserves to live in a safe and healthy home
This organization provides structural repairs, accessibility modifications and energy efficient upgrades to low-income homes and community centers at no cost to the recipients. They have been at it for nearly 25 years. Through its affiliates in New York City, Long Island, Bergen County, Jersey City, and Essex County and with the help of 3,150 volunteers Rebuilding Together has assisted more than 430 people and repaired more than 200 homes and community centers impacted by Hurricane Sandy. At this year’s Super Bowl, being held in New Jersey, Rebuilding Together will partner with the NFL, Lowe’s, Carter’s Kids, and The American Red Cross as part of their Kick off to Rebuild event that will benefit families in Bergen County, New Jersey. You can watch their web series on their efforts to rebuild after Sandy here and can donate to the Rebuilding Together here.
Waves for Water – providing clean water to communities in need around the world
While this organization typically focuses on providing clean water to people living in impoverished areas around the world they, jumped into action to help with initial survival needs including first responder assistance, rubble removal, and rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Sandy. To date, Waves for Water has raised $1,387,289 as part of their Hurricane Sandy Relief Initiative and focused their efforts on some of the hardest hit surf-based coastal communities in New Jersey and New York. Waves for Water used their organization as a bridge to connect the global surf community to those in need along the East Coast and even held supplies drives in Southern California, many in our firm’s hometown of San Diego County, where they collected everything from diapers to shovels to space heaters to bedding for the families in need. The organization recently released the first edition of their Hurricane Sandy Relief Initiative Impact Report which can be viewed here. To donate to Waves for Water or start a fundraiser through their organization for the Hurricane Sandy relief effort, click here.
The Robin Hood Relief Fund – dedicated to fighting poverty in New York City
On December 12th, 2012 a historic and star-studded concert was held in in New York City at Madison Square Garden to benefit the Robin Hood Relief Fund for communities in the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut devastated by Hurricane Sandy. The concert received $73 million in contributions from all 50 states and more than 90 countries. 100% of the proceeds went to hundreds of non-profit organizations working directly with affected communities. The majority of Robin Hood Hurricane Sandy relief funds have gone to housing, including rental assistance, new construction, repairs, mold remediation, and moving fees.
Robin Hood is the largest independent poverty fighting organization in the New York City area. Since 1988, it has worked to find, fund, and create programs and schools benefiting families in New York’s poorest neighborhoods and distributed contributions to hundreds of soup kitchens, homeless shelters, schools, job training programs, and other vital services. To donate to the Robin Hood Relief Fund for Hurricane Sandy click here.
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We thank these organizations for jumping in to help our neighbors in need. If you know of other organizations helping the Hurricane Sandy relief and rebuilding effort please share them with us.
The Collaborative Services Team