I spent the day on the ground today in The New Dorp Beach area of Staten Island. Yesterday I spent the day in The Rockaways and I’ve come up with a list of things I know that people need. There is some consistency between all of the places, outposts and ad-hock stands on what they need and I can imagine that every location is like this as well. I can tell you that they definitely DON’T need water, food and clothes – in fact, these things are a problem now and if you even try to bring them to Staten Island, Rockaway Beach and probably every other location you will find they will be stuck with a ton of clothing. All places excepting donations are turning away clothing at this point. This is a major point – your efforts will seriously be thwarted if you accept clothing.
Pet Food is a necessity, for sure, but I’m sure they will get to a point that they don’t need it soon.
The biggest things you can gather for them and send are:
Cleaning supplies – Bleach, Ammonia, Mops, buckets, brooms dustpans, and Contractor Bags. Paper Towels & Shammies, Disinfectant wipes
First Aid stuff – neosporin, aspirin, tylenol, ibprofen and other OTC drugs, nasal spray
Tarps, granny carts, shopping carts, wheelbarrows to transport goods to homes.
Faces masks and respirators,
Gas, & Gas Cans (ideally filled with gas). Generators.
One big thing that they could really use is for people to make runs to PA to get gas. The lines here are ridiculous.
Also I read that Bedford Union Armory. 1579 Bedford Avenue was giving out free gas (10 gal, max pp). Not sure if that spot is still setup, but worth a try. turns out this did not work out as planned. Head to PA or CT for your fuel needs.
Take cash donations as well and turn it into cleaning supplies and lowes or home depot.
They also need working hands down there, ready to get dirty. You should come dressed warmly in layers, wear work boots bring work gloves. Cleaning supplies are severely limited, so bring your own. You will NOT be serving or making food – those jobs are taken.
Donations of these type can be dropped at St. Jacobi Church 5406 4th Ave @ 55th Street in Brooklyn. From there it will get dispatched out to The Rockaways and Staten Island. If you want to volunteer to do the dirty work, you can meet at this location and be picked up and get a ride back to The church.