Providing Relief After Hurricane Sandy

Courtesy of James Schafer of Cranford, NJ –

It seems that there is no one in the New York City area or New Jersey that has gone untouched by the recent devastation of Hurricane Sandy.  While most of us have our own tales of woe, I am touched and inspired by how many have taken the initiative to help neighbors and those in areas that have been utterly destroyed.

The big question over the past week and a half or so has been “what can I do to help?” Therefore, I’ve put together a list of ideas and links to organizations that are working tirelessly to make a difference.

Also, while many places need donations of physical goods (i.e. diapers, ointment, industrial garbage bags, food, clothing, etc.), the word on the street is that what they need more than anything is donations to organizations that can get them what they need in bulk.  So while it may seem less personal, please consider giving to organizations that are helping with the effort.

1. The NYC Mayor’s Office is urging people to sign up through NYC Service.  This site provides multiple sources for providing help — definitely check it out.

2. The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) is a key member of JVOAD (Jewish Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster).  They immediately released $10 Million in funds towards the relief effort, but could use more.  Click here for more information.  If you’d like to get out there and do something, UJA has various volunteer opportunities posted on their site: click here.  Or, you can donate by clicking here and 100% of donations will be used towards aid.

3. New York Cares is constantly providing ways for people to volunteer, including working at distribution sites and cleaning up parks.

4. The Salvation Army is aiding those in crisis with hot meals, water, and shelter. To send a $10 donation via text message, you can text the word STORM to 80888, and confirm the donation with the word, “Yes.” They are also accepting used clothing and furniture donations to local Salvation Army locations (via NBC News).

5. The Food Bank For New York City is distributing emergency food and supplies. To donate, text FBNYC to 50555 or make a monetary contributiononline. Their local food pantries and kitchens also need disaster response volunteers–sign up, here.

6. The Humane Society is leading pet search and rescue efforts. To support their initiatives, click here.

7. Help rebuild Hoboken, NJ by donating to and getting a very cool shirt in the process!  100% of the proceeds will go to the Hoboken Relief Fund and/or the American Red Cross.  (Heal Hoboken was started by a group of tech collaborators including Short Hills’s very own Aaron Price!)

Wishing you all the best.  Stay safe and stay warm.

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