As I'm sure many of you heard, yesterday the New York Marathon was called off, but many of the runners still got up, got out and headed to Staten Island. Instead of kicking off the race, they were there to help out with the relief efforts. This image, taken at the ferry terminal from Paul Sailer's instagram, is just one example of many that show a community coming together. For those of us both near and far who'd like to also lend a hand, we've gathered together a list of links...Help to Rebuild a Community's Home Destroyed by the Storm:
I'm leading off our list with a specific story of just one organization that one of my colleagues told me about that is close to his heart. He wrote: The Ali Forney Center is a drop in center for lesbian and gay kids. When their parents kick these children out -- often for being gay -- many kids head to Chelsea and the West Village. These kids end up homeless and sometimes have to turn to sex work to get by.
• The Ali Forney Center From the Center's site: Yesterday we were finally able to inspect our drop-in center in Chelsea, half a block from the Hudson River. Our worst fears were realized; everything was destroyed and the space is uninhabitable. The water level went four feet high, destroying our phones, computers, refrigerator, food and supplies.
This is a terrible tragedy for the homeless LGBT youth we serve there. This space was dedicated to our most vulnerable kids, the thousands stranded on the streets without shelter, and was a place where they received food, showers, clothing, medical care, HIV testing and treatment, and mental health and substance abuse services. Basically a lifeline for LGBT kids whose lives are in danger.
More Info: Ali Forney Center
Donating Money to Help by Text:
• Red Cross - $10 donation - REDCROSS to 90999 or through iTunes
• Salvation Army - $10 donation - STORM to 80888
• American Humane Association - $10 donation - HUMANE to 80888
• Direct Relief International - $10 Donation - RELIEF to 27222
Helping Out Food Banks:
• Community Foodbank of New Jersey
• Food Bank for New York City
• New York City Coalition Against Hunger
Helping Out on eBay and Amazon:
• eBay Auction to Support those Affected by Hurricane Sandy
• Assemblyman Titone's Relief Supplies Amazon Wishlist (Staten Island)
Helping Out Local Direct Assistance Organizations
• Brooklyn Recovery Fund
• Red Hook Initiative
• Rockaway Waterfront Alliance
• Plus many more at Sweet Fine Day
(Image: Paul Sailer on Instagram via Gawker)