MAP: You Won't Believe What These States Did Last Night -
They legalized what for the who now!
The following post is the e-mail that my girlfriend Rachel sent out last night thanking those who helped us and our friends help so many people around New York City for a third day in a row:
Dearest Friends, Friends of Friends, Parents of Friends, Friends of Parents (and, therefore, me!), Utter and Complete Stranger(angels), and Makers-of-Dreams-Come-True,
The sun has set on Day 3 of #blankets4brooklyn - the most rogue fundraising operation to hit Brooklyn since … ever?
We started out the day with just over $700 and are ending the day with nearly $8000. You have helped us raise nearly $1000 on a work day (when most folks are busy getting back to “life as usual”) so that we could get much-needed supplies to the Far Rockaways and Coney Island. All of the money that has come in has either been spent or will be spent by tomorrow.
"So," you may be asking, "what did my dollars help buy today?"
"Another perfectly coordinated day with Rachel GM. It began at 9am when Erika Davis, Miriam Aronoff and Elissa Moore picked me up in our zipcar van. We picked up another friend Arlo T. Paust and headed to St. Jacobi’s Church in Sunset Park - a major hub distribution for goods and supplies but also a station for volunteers to be assigned. Picked up goods and supplies and added another volunteer, Shannon, and we were off to the Rockaways - another day doing what we can. We stopped at a Rite Aid on the way, bought A LOT of batteries, the few flashlights that were left and probably 30 Jesus candles (is there a real name for these candles?). The 59th Street Firehouse didn’t need our help so we headed back over to St. Gertrude’s Church. I’m telling you, Facebook family - it is powerful to see what is happening on a grassroots level here in NY. It is powerful to see the devastation that has affected so many. The amount of organization that was taking place today warms my heart. We had someone managing new volunteers coming throughout the day. People in the kitchen organizing and making food. People in a room organized by Erika Davis for supplies (diapers, batteries, cleaning supplies, paper towels, etc..) I was in the front with a few others, managing cars and people with new goods and supplies to drop off. On the other side of the church, a line began - people in need of all of these goods, supplies, clothes, shoes, hats, towels etc. And, at one point in the day, the doors opened up and volunteers helped as these families made clear what they were in need of.”
Thank you for enabling us to do this much needed relief work; we literally couldn’t do it without you.
Next on the agenda: coolers to transport hot soup to people who are freezing and hungry and sitting in the dark … and may continue to be sitting in the dark until as long as Thanksgiving … you can imagine how important hot soup and hot food will be.
We’ll also be providing seed funding for a project starting up in Long Island to get supplies to folks who are working on cleaning out their absolutely destroyed homes. Soon, the fund will be empty. Which is exactly what we want to happen - this is all about real aid to real people in real time … no money languishing in a bank account, no goods languishing in a warehouse.
As I returned to work today (albeit to coordinate the relief efforts of the wonderful synagogue for which I work), it heartened me to know that donations would still be coming in so that we could help volunteers get goods into the hands of folks who need them.
Thank you for being our partners,
The following post is the e-mail that my girlfriend sent out last night thanking those who helped us and our friends help so many people around New York City for a second day in a row yesterday:
Dearest Friends, Friends of Friends, Parents of Friends, Friends of Parents (and, therefore, me!), Rabbis of Wonderful Fundraising-Religious-School-Students, Utter and Complete Stranger[angels], and Makers-of-Dreams-Come-True,
The sun has set on Day 2 of #blankets4brooklyn - the most rogue fundraising operation to hit Brooklyn since … ever?
Yesterday I wrote an email to the day 1 contributors that started by talking about how, while I was COMPLETELY exhausted (and without a charged cellphone battery from all the charting of donations and disseminating of funds), I was filled to the brim with love and wonder at the goodness of my loved ones and the generosity and trust of complete stranger[angels]. As today comes to a close, I have to tell you that, though I know I’m still pretty exhausted from all the yawning I seem to be doing, I FEEL completely energized by the love and wonder that has grown to epic proportions.
We started off the day just over $4000, and we are ending it just over $7000. You have helped us almost double the funds we are collecting to get much-needed supplies all over damaged parts of Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, and Staten Island. At this point, the only borough we’re missing is the Bronx!
"So," you may be asking, "what did my dollars buy today?"
• $1600 for the materials needed to convert 4 bicycles into bicycle-powered charging stations - 2 will go to Staten Island and 2 will go to the Far Rockaways tomorrow/Tuesday
• $300 for 1 car-load of baby food, peanut butter, dry milk, and SO much more that went directly to the Fire Station in Far Rockaway Queens to be distributed by strangerangel, Linda Rosenblatt
• $600 for cooking supplies to continue getting hot food to distribution centers in the Rockaways, Coney Island, and Staten Island TODAY and the rest of this week AND for hand warmers, D batteries, and 180 bars of soap that were delivered directly to residents in Coney Island today by yours truly
• $367 for 50 winter hats, 25 pairs of men’s winter gloves, 15 mega packs of baby wipes, 27 tubes of toothpaste, 63 toothbrushes, 10 boxes of tampons, 7 Queen-sized blankets that all went straight to Coney Island (I went with this carload and put many of these things directly into the hands of residents)
• $100 that went to two stranger angels, who we met while buying our supplies at the dollar store, to purchase tons of children’s games, toothpaste, and personal hygiene products for those in evacuation shelters in Brooklyn - we bought this load and they promised that they’ll go and buy another load … we doubled the mitzvah!
Attached are photos of that - the quinoa bought yesterday cooked into quinoa salad that was delivered today, the trunk of the car-load that went to Coney Island (the one with the blankets), PART of the trunk of supplies that went to the Far Rockaways with baby food and peanut butter …
We’ve got 3 (maybe 4) more car-loads of goods in the pipeline for this week (tomorrow, Wednesday, and Thursday/Friday). I’ll personally be back out on the road next Sunday … and who knows where this will take us! I just got word from my accountant that I don’t have to worry about the IRS coming to get me, which means we’ll just keep doing this for as long as we can sustain getting supplies immediately to folks who need them or until there’s not a need - may the second scenario come sooner than the first.
I want to share with you a piece from my first contributor update that I sent out last night because it so TOTALLY still applies:
"And, while it wasn’t my intention at ALL, your dollars have done something else for which I will NEVER be able to fully thank you: they have begun putting the pieces of my very broken heart back together. When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans 7 years ago, I knew my life would never be the same. And it isn’t. And there are so many people who now share an anguish I hoped no one else would ever know. The pain is so great. And, yet, the potential for love and healing is enormous.
If I’ve learned anything today, I’ve learned that no dream is insignificant, no idea is silly, and, when we work together, we can truly change this world.
There’s a saying that goes, “Each one, teach one.” That is how we raised this money. I don’t know half of you. And I probably will never meet you (though, if I do, there’s a Brooklyn-sized hug coming your way). I was just one person. Who reached out to another person. Who reached out to another person. Who reached out to another person. TOGETHER we did this. Some of you are clearly crazy - you sent money to a perfect stranger but that makes me know you are TRULY “my people.”
So, from the bottom of my ever-expanding heart, THANK YOU.
We’re in this together,
I saw similar scens in Coney Island yesterday.
Seen on Staten Island.
These two women came from the Netherlands to run in the marathon today. Instead of moping about the event being cancelled, they spent their time volunteering on Staten Island. Saw so many people in running gear today, helping New Yorkers remove debris from their houses. Makes sense— because nobody who signed up for a marathon is afraid of hard work.
Seen in Sea Gate, Brooklyn.
Seen in Breezy Point, Queens.