The Clinton Foundation and Clinton Global Initiative, with Team Rubicon, NYC Service, and New York Cares, mobilize more than 1,000 participants to join President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton in a day of volunteer service in the Rockaways
New York, NY – On Sunday, November 18, the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) brought more than 1,000 volunteers to the Rockaways in Queens to participate in “A Day of Action for New York,” an effort to bring relief to one of the areas hardest-hit by Hurricane Sandy. Joining President Bill Clinton and Chelsea Clinton, volunteers spent more than 5,000 hours clearing debris, cleaning out flooded basements, cleaning the beachfront, and distributing disaster relief supplies and coats to aid in the recovery of a community still reeling from Sandy’s devastation.
“The impact of Hurricane Sandy has devastated families and communities along the East Coast, including many right here in New York City,” said Chelsea Clinton. “Yesterday, the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative were able to bring people and organizations together for a Day of Action for New York to aid in recovery efforts. By working with friends, partners, and local community members, we were proud to be able to make a small but meaningful difference in an area hard hit by Sandy.”
The Rockaways, an 11-mile peninsula in Queens facing the Atlantic Ocean, was one of the areas most impacted by the storm. Thousands of residents experienced extensive damage, including loss of power and homes destroyed by floods and fires. Recovery has been slow for the many victims still without heat, power, and running water.
On Sunday, more than 1,000 volunteers, including staff, supporters, and friends of the Clinton Foundation, and CGI members and commitment makers, worked at locations throughout the Rockaways. More than 500 volunteers helped home-owners clear debris with Team Rubicon, a CGI member whose CGI commitment includes engaging veterans and military family members in 1.5 million hours of volunteer service in communities nationwide by July 2013. The remaining volunteers, in coordination with NYC Service and New York Cares, worked at the Key Foods and St. Francis Church distribution sites to hand out emergency supplies and canvass door-to-door to provide crucial information to residents. Volunteers were also dispatched to Rockaway Beach to help with park cleanup efforts and to Peninsula Library to help distribute winter coats.
In addition to the immediate response to Hurricane Sandy, the Clinton Foundation and CGI recognize that most disaster response involves a multi-year effort and will continue to explore the long-term challenges of how to best coordinate efforts, forge partnerships, and strategically respond to the devastating effects of man-made and natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy. Through its ongoing focus on “Resilient Cities,” CGI is looking for new ways to strengthen infrastructure and be better prepared to protect vulnerable populations from the rising sea levels, droughts, and increased frequency of storms that coincide with climate change.
Please visit clintonfoundation.org/main/get-involved/take-action/support-hurricane-sandy-relief-efforts.html to learn of other ways to support disaster relief efforts or commit volunteer hours in your own community.
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About Team Rubicon
Team Rubicon (TR) unites the skills and experience of military veterans with first responders to rapidly deploy emergency response teams into crisis situations. TR offers veterans a chance to continue their service by helping and empowering those afflicted by disasters, and also themselves. For more about Team Rubicon, visit www.teamrubiconusa.org.
The NYC Civic Corps is the signature initiative of NYC Service, which was launched by Mayor Bloomberg in April 2009 to meet his State of the City pledge for New York City to lead the nation in answering President Obama's national call to volunteerism. NYC Service is meeting its goals to make New York City the easiest place in the world to volunteer, target volunteer efforts to address the most pressing local challenges, and promote service as a core part of what it means to be a New Yorker. NYC Service aims to drive volunteer resources to six impact areas where New York City's needs are greatest: strengthening communities, helping neighbors in need, improving education, increasing public health, enhancing emergency preparedness and protecting our environment.
Since its inception in April of 2009, NYC Service has engaged over 2 million New Yorkers in a wide range of volunteer activities, from beautifying neighborhood blocks, to providing tax assistance to low-income families, to volunteering to teach free fitness classes at City recreation centers, to coating rooftops with reflective white paint to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. NYC Service oversees 25 new or expanded volunteer initiatives and the comprehensive website, located at www.nyc.gov, has made it easier for New Yorkers to find opportunities to make a difference. More than 560,000 unique visitors to the NYC Service website had access to over 5,700 volunteer opportunities.
New Yorkers can find opportunities to serve their communities by visiting www.nyc.gov or by calling 311.
New York Cares
New York Cares is New York City’s largest volunteer organization. Founded 25 years ago, New York Cares runs volunteer programs for 1,200 New York City nonprofits, city agencies, and public schools across the five boroughs. Last year, 54,000 New York Cares volunteers served on hands-on volunteer projects helping 400,000 New Yorkers in need. New York Cares offers a full range of volunteer programs that meet critical social needs, including helping children learn to read, preparing meals for homeless and housebound people, helping low income students get into college, and much more. For more information, visit newyorkcares.org.