Bags of Hope

Here’s a great project for all those that know how to operate a sewing machine.

 

 

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It doesn’t end this weekend

The lives, families, and communities turned upside down by Sandy will continue to reel for the next several weeks and months.  Some things will never be put right.  But, through the hard work and generosity of thousands, damage is being limited.  People are being fed, housed and clothed.  Emergency assistance is helping people meet these basic requirements for survival.  The need for this kind of assistance continues.  In addition to these basic survival needs, these communities are STARTING the long process of cleaning up and rebuilding.  Residents and volunteers are working hard to limit the losses that continue to occur.  The nor-easter this past week serves as reminder that nature does not call time-outs.   They are going to have their hands full for long time.

As a drop in the bucket, we will continue collecting materials next week at the Steel Yard, 27 Sims Ave, Providence, RI.  So, take a good hard look at what you have in your home already and find those things you can part with that might really help out the folks trying to rebuild communities such as

  • Breezy Point, where dozens of homes were destroyed by fire
  • Gerrittsen Beach, community in Brooklyn, that is so tight knit and so hard hit that among the scores of homes destroyed and hundreds damaged, one extended family lost five homes.
  • Broad Channel, where not one home escaped flooding
  • The Rockaways, Staten Island, Hoboken, Atlantic City, Ocean City, Coney Island, Red Hook…the list goes on

Remember, they not only need to rebuild their homes and their communities, they need the tools and materials to rebuild.  A flooded basement means lost tools.  A leveled garage means lost materials.  A destroyed car means no way to make a run to the store.  Boarding up a broken window, putting a tarp over the hole in the roof or even waiting to fill out FEMA or insurance paperwork means lost wages, which means that even if the car was working and fueled, there isn’t a lot of money to spend at the hardware store.  So, what ever COULD be used, SHOULD be used as soon as possible by the people who are trying to hold on to what they have and hopefully return to where they were.

See the original post for what we are looking for.

Check out our facebook page for updates.

And please, if you have cash that you want to donate, consider Occupy Sandy’s Wedding Registry or check out the Occupy Sandy page for other options.

And remember:

  • Restoring the shore will require both immediate actions and long-term efforts.
  • Enough drops in the bucket fills that bucket.  Enough buckets in the hand of a brigade makes a difference.
  • If you send any goods anywhere: box them (instead of bagging), label them, and make sure they are being received by folks who are expecting them and can use them.
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OCCUPY BASEMENTS Providence to Gerritsen Beach (Brooklyn) edition

Here is the plan:

Donations will accepted at The Steel Yard Wednesday through Friday 27 Sims St. Providence RI

Donations will be delivered to the Gerritsen Beach Volunteer Fire Dept.  They are able and willing to distribute collected items.

 

So…that stuff you kept because “it might come in handy someday”?  Well, if it is a working handtool, power tool, lighting, extension cord, tarp, or an unused box/roll of construction related material, that “someday” is today.  See post below for details on what we need.

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OCCUPY BASEMENTS – Sandy Relief Effort

OCCUPY BASEMENTS is a relief effort concentrated on putting tools in the hands of those affected by Hurricane/ Superstorm Sandy.  On top on the injury suffered by coastal communities, it is a cruel insult to the folks on Long Island, Staten Island, and the Mid-Atlantic Shore that they have lost many of the tools they need to help themselves and their neighbors.  Basements, garages, and sheds have been filled with with salty, oily, sandy water and muck.  Along with the damage to the structures that must be repaired, tools have been lost or damaged beyond repair.  OCCUPY BASEMENTS will mitigate this damage by replacing as many of these tools (and supplies).

WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP 

Go to your basement, garage, shed or wherever you have tools that you are willing to donate.  The drill you kept “as a backup” after you upgraded last year? That pex crimper that cost 40 bucks but you haven’t used since you finished the plumbing job three years ago?  The roll of tar paper leftover from the roofing job?  The half case of silicone caulk that was such a deal you couldn’t pass it up?  That thing you’ve been keeping around because it might come in handy some day?  People can use this stuff NOW.  Dust it off and get it to the folks that need it.  Tell your friends to do the same.

How do you get it where it needs to go?  Well, if you live in or near Providence, RI there will be a drop off point organized by the end of this week.  Check back here for details on time and location.  OCCUPY BASEMENTS will be making contact with locations in the affected areas to organize delivery.  We will be working to make sure that these items go into the hands of people and organizations that are able and willing to handle the distribution of these items.  Please do not stop sending cash, blankets, water, tarps, and anything else you can get down there by whatever means you can as quickly as possible.  

WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR: we will be able to receive all item by week’s end, but if you can only get some items together now, and some items together later, needs have been prioritized.

High Priority (If you can these items down there today by some other means, do it.  This stuff is needed NOW.)

  • Tarps, plastic sheeting, and other items to help weather proof buildings against further damage
  • Shovels, Heavy duty pushbrooms, and contractor and other clean up tools
  • N95 masks, Work Gloves, and other items to the folks doing the heavy lifting safe and warm
  • Anything that generates heat
  • Lighting

Priority (these are the items that we will send as soon as feasible, both in terms of our resources and the ability of people affected to put them to good use)

  • Crowbars, nail pullers, saws, hammers and other tools useful in the gutting of damaged homes
  • Nails, screws, nailguns, stapleguns
  • Drills, sanders, planers, 
  • Levels, squares, tape measures, screwdrivers, pliers and other simple hand tools
  • Construction Material (tarpaper, flashing, un-used, useful lengths of pipe, wire, ductwork)
  • Supplies (Un-used electrical boxes, switches, outlets, wire nuts, etc.)

PLEASE:

  • Donate useful and usable items.  A box of leftover roofing nails saves someone down there a few bucks.  A box of leftover tiles from YOUR bathroom is a burden.
  • Don’t stop donating critically needed items that are helping people survive this crisis. Occupy Sandy has updated information on current needs and locations.  Baby supplies, food, disposable utensils, winter (not general) clothing, tarps and cleaning supplies are desperately needed.
  • Don’t go out and buy this stuff.  If you have cash that you want to spend helping the survivors of Sandy, please donate it to folks in that area that can put it to better use getting the the things they need today.  Again, check out Occupy Sandy for more info.  OCCUPY BASEMENTS exists to supplement, not replace, any current efforts.  OCCUPY BASEMENTS exists to extend how much you can give, by providing an outlet to put currently unused resources (tools and supplies) into hands that use them rebuilding Sandy-ravaged communities.

WANT TO DO MORE? (Please say “yes”)

  • Spread the Word (facebook, churches, whatever you can think of)
  • Organize a neighborhood collection point
  • Volunteer to sort items
  • Help secure donated (or at least cheap) transport

IF ANYONE TAKES ON THE JOB OF ORGANIZING A COLLECTION OUTSIDE OF PROVIDENCE, I WILL POST INFO ABOUT IT HERE.

AGAIN, CHECK BACK FOR SPECIFICS ON PROVIDENCE AREA COLLECTION

 

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Signs for tip jars

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