UWNYC Announces $100,000 in Grants to Community Organizations Severely Affected by Hurricane Sandy

Individual grants up to $10,000 to organizations to help with rebuilding destroyed facilities, replenishing damaged supplies, client transportation to alternate sites, renting temporary relocation spaces, and replacement IT equipment

New York, NY—United Way of New York City announced today it is awarding $100,000 in grants to local community-based organizations that were severely impacted by Hurricane Sandy in some of the most devastated communities.

United Way of New York City is distributing grants to 12 organizations ranging from $3,300 to $10,000 to support each organization’s recovery efforts in the wake of the hurricane. All grant recipients are 501(c)3 organizations that provide health and/or human services to low-income populations in Staten Island, Coney Island, Red Hook, or the Lower East Side and that, because of the hurricane, have been compromised in their capacity to serve their communities.

"United Way of New York City recognizes that many of our closest partners have been decimated by Hurricane Sandy and still need serious help to get back on their feet and serve those who were already vulnerable before the storm," said Sheena Wright, President and CEO of United Way of New York City. "These new funds, in addition to our Recovery Fund, will provide an immediate infusion of money and support to help our City recover."

Selected grantees were each damaged by the Hurricane but have found ways to continue to serve their clients. The grant money will provide these organizations with immediate relief as they replace boilers, rebuild walls and floors, replenish damaged supplies for clients, transport clients to alternate sites, relocate temporarily, and replace IT equipment and lost files.

The organizations receiving grants are:

  • CAMBA (Coney Island)
  • Coney Island Light House Mission/ACTS Community Development Corporation (Coney Island)
  • YWCA/Roberta Bright Early Learning Center (Coney Island)
  • Added Value and Herban Solutions, Inc. (Red Hook)
  • Center for Court Innovation/Red Hook Justice Center (Red Hook)
  • Staten Island Mental Health Society, Inc. (Staten Island)
  • Asian-Americans for Equality (Lower East Side)
  • The Bowery Mission (Lower East Side)
  • Chinese-American Planning Council (Lower East Side)
  • The Father’s Heart Ministries (Lower East Side)
  • Hamilton Madison House (Lower East Side)
  • Henry Street Settlement (Lower East Side)

Organizations receiving grants serve a diverse set of needs in their communities, and include early childhood centers, community development corporations, homeless shelters, food pantries, and settlement houses. Some examples include:

The Coney Island Lighthouse Mission, overseen by ACTS Community Development Corporation, serves approximately 35,000 impoverished individuals in the Coney Island community each year. They provide hot meals once a week as well as food bags with fresh local produce twice a week. They also offer free benefit screenings to help move individuals towards self-sufficiency, free after-school programming, ESL education, GED preparation, and job readiness services. A Hurricane Sandy induced surge sent water swirling into their building, destroying thousands of dollars’ worth of food, stoves, freezers, computers, and other equipment. They will use the grant from United Way of New York City towards new walls, new computers, furniture and other materials that are necessary for their operation to function.

The Staten Island Mental Health Society, Inc. (SIMHS) provides mental health services for more than one in ten children and families in Staten Island each year. Following Hurricane Sandy, the organization lost power, heat, e-mail and phone service for a week. While many of the organization's employees themselves were struggling, they traveled to emergency shelters to offer free counseling to survivors and try to connect with existing patients. SIMHS plans to continue providing emergency counseling to those in need, particularly in Staten Island schools at the request of principals and teachers. United Way of New York City's grant will support these efforts and offset the cost of crisis services.

Added Value and Herban Solutions, Inc. promotes sustainable development in Red Hook by creating opportunities for youth in South Brooklyn through the operation of a socially responsible urban farming enterprise. Hurricane Sandy submerged the organization's community farm in several feet of sea water, contaminating all of the produce, and also took the office offline for two and a half weeks. Despite these major damages, Added Value was able to continue its youth programs and coordinate volunteer food efforts. They will use the grant from United Way of New York City to replenish supplies for their food and farm-based learning programs, which engage more than 1,300 local elementary school children annually.

In addition to these grants, United Way of New York City also has partnered with United Way U.S.A. to create the regional United Way Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund (#sandyfund). Contributions to the Fund will be used by local United Ways along the Eastern Seaboard to address the near and long-term recovery needs of communities hardest hit by the superstorm.

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About United Way of New York City

United Way of New York City fights poverty across the five boroughs. We design and invest in evidence-based programs that help low-income New Yorkers achieve educational success, income stability and good health. We rigorously evaluate our work and use lessons learned to inform and advance public policies and practices that prevent and alleviate poverty citywide. To learn more about our work and how to get involved, visit UnitedWayNYC.org.