Entries in Relief (5)


NYC Mayor Pushes for Sandy Relief Funds in Washington

Michael Loccisano/FilmMagic(WASHINGTON) -- Trying to inject some urgency into getting new federal aid for victims of Hurricane Sandy, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg met with several lawmakers in Washington Wednesday.

"Our reception was very good. Everyone I met with understands the severity of the damage and the importance of helping," Bloomberg said after meeting with members of Congress.

New York State officials think Hurricane Sandy inflicted $42 billion worth of damage in the state, with nearly half of that in New York City.  Mayor Bloomberg hopes others will spring into action to help New York recover as they have in the past.

"America's come to New York's assistance before and I think New York has an admirable record in trying to come to assistance of other people around this country. We're all Americans. This is not a partisan thing," he said.

But one lawmaker calls it a "hard sell," especially since Congress is wrestling with the nation's budget. New York Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer says the appropriations requests should be substantial.

"We want the first to be as large as it can be, as large as the damage we know we already have…and that number will grow," Schumer said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Volunteers Use Wedding Registries to Help Sandy Victims

Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- When Ashley Diamond envisioned herself helping out a fellow runner last Sunday she thought it would be along the course of the New York Marathon, the race for which she and nearly 40,000 other runners had spent months training.

Instead Diamond, an influential blogger in the tight-knit New York running world, found herself in front of a computer, still helping a fellow would-be marathoner but in a very different way.

Diamond, 28, logged on to to help Jen Correa of Staten Island, New York, who was also planning to run the marathon but instead found herself homeless and left with nothing after superstorm Sandy decimated her neighborhood last week.

The "wedding registry" Diamond created for Correa had nothing to do with weddings, however, and everything to do with what more and more people are doing in the aftermath of Sandy: trying to help those devastated by the storm.

"I was expecting Target to have a housewarming or new home registry and when I only saw 'wedding' or 'baby,' I thought I would just go into the wedding because I knew the items they'd suggest would be similar items," Diamond said.

Diamond renamed the registry "Jen and Pedro's Rebuilding Registry," after Jen and her husband, Pedro, an Iraq war veteran who stayed behind and narrowly survived the storm while Jen evacuated with the couple's two young children, ages 2 and 7.

"Registries are everywhere and have everything on there and allow people to choose things of all prices," Diamond said. "I listed their wedding date as Christmas Day and went to the top sellers, within a reasonable price point, and figured if it was a top seller and the ratings were good I would add it to the registry."

The idea to create a gift registry for the Correas came to Diamond, appropriately enough, while she was out on a run with her husband, Bo, who was also planning to run the marathon last Sunday. They saw it as a more tangible alternative to the fundraising site the family's friends had already created.

"This is finally a way that when someone buys it online they'll [the Correas] start getting things in the mail the next day," she said. "And, for the Correas, can you imagine a child who has nothing being able to open a box and have a princess or, for her son, to have a Mario wall decal, because that's something from his room that doesn't exist now?"

A wedding registry's direct impact also appealed to a trio of volunteers with Occupy Sandy, an Occupy Wall Street-offshoot created to help Sandy's victims. The three 25-year-old Brooklyn residents built their own "wedding registry" for Sandy's victims after spending a day volunteering in the field.

"We realized that they [Occupy Sandy organizers] knew exactly what they needed and just weren't getting it quickly enough so we thought a wedding registry would give them exactly what they needed," said Katherine Dolan, one of the organizers.

Instead of wedding items like china and monogrammed towels, the Occupy Sandy registry lists items like cleaning supplies, blankets, flashlights and shovels. Forgoing the wedding fluff, the registry lists the couple's style as "warm and non-perishable" and says that the couple has requested that the gifts not be gift-wrapped. Buyers can ship the items directly to a local church in Brooklyn now serving as a hub for Occupy Sandy volunteers.

"The first delivery came this morning and there was over $3,000 worth of products," Dolan said. "It's going to be weeks of recovery so we're going to keep up with it."

Diamond says the outpouring she has received from her single blog post Monday announcing the registry is also unlike anything she has ever seen before. From the time that Diamond told Correa of her efforts, to the moment when Correa got to her sister's home and was able to view the registry, everything listed had been purchased.

"Monday was the highest traffic day I've ever had on my blog," Diamond said. "I think when they [donors] can really put their donation and their money with a face and a family it just gives them that extra incentive. They love that they know exactly where their donations are going."

The Minneapolis-based Target, which announced last week it had donated $500,000 in money and products to assist with Hurricane Sandy relief efforts on its own, did not reply to a request for comment placed by ABC News as of this writing. also did not reply to a request.

The Correas, who at first had the registry gift items sent to Jen's sister's home, now also have a place to house the generosity of others, in their new, temporary rental home.

"I got a text last night at 9:30 from Jen saying, 'I'm so excited to have four walls. There may be no gas and no heat but there are four walls. And it's really easy to move when all you have is two air mattresses,'" Diamond said.

For more information on the "Jen and Pedro Rebuilding Registry," click here. For more information on the "Occupy Sandy Wedding Registry," click here.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


ABC to Hold ‘Day of Giving’ to Help Hurricane Sandy Victims

ABC(NEW YORK) -- Disney and ABC will launch a “Day of Giving” Monday, Nov. 5 to raise money for hurricane relief efforts. Starting on Good Morning America and ending with Jimmy Kimmel Live, ABC shows will encourage viewers to help those impacted by the storm by making a contribution to the American Red Cross.


Here’s how you can participate in ABC’s “Day of Giving:”

  •     TEXT: Text ABC to 90999 to give a $10 donation to the Red Cross.
  •     ONLINE:  Go to to make a donation of any amount.
  •     BY PHONE:  Call 1-800-HELP-NOW. This number will bypass all the other menu options and direct your call to Hurricane Sandy relief.

Hurricane Sandy has affected millions along the East Coast, causing massive devastation and destruction and in its wake. Recovery efforts are underway as emergency crews scramble to get supplies to the hardest-hit communities, but many estimate that the relief effort may be the most expensive in U.S. history.

The Walt Disney Company kicked off the effort Thursday, announcing a $2 million donation for Sandy relief and rebuilding efforts, including $1 million to the American Red Cross and $1 million to organizations working on rebuilding efforts.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


How to Help Victims Affected by Deadly Southern Storms, Tornadoes

Jessica McGowan/Getty Images(TUSCALOOSA, Ala.) -- Deadly tornadoes and thunderstorms ripped through the South Wednesday and early Thursday, devastating dozens of cities and killing more than 300 people across six states.

The majority of the deaths have been reported in Alabama, where 200-mile-per-hour winds swept homes off their foundations in one area.  President Obama pledged full federal government support for all those affected by the storms and signed a disaster declaration for Alabama to assist in recovery and clean-up efforts.

Here's how you can help and donate to the April 2011 tornado relief effort:

American Red Cross: The Red Cross is providing relief to people across the hardest-hit states, providing shelter, and relief to survivors. To make a donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief, visit its online donation page. You can also call 1-800-RED-CROSS or text "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

The Salvation Army: The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services is responding to the deadly tornado activity throughout the South, mobilizing feeding units and providing support to the victims. To donate to the Salvation Army's tornado disaster response, visit, click on their donation page and designate "April 2011 Tornado Outbreak." You can call 1-800-SAL-ARMY and donors can text "GIVE" to 80888 to make a $10 donation. Checks can be made out to the Salvation Army Disaster Relief, P.O. Box 100339, Atlanta, Ga., 30384-0339.

Alabama - Governor's Emergency Relief Fund: The Fund, part of the Alabama Governor's Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, provides additional recovery assistance to Alabama residents who have exhausted all other coverage provided by relief organizations, government programs and insurance. To donate, visit their online donation page.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Be the Change: Students Help Haiti Rebuild

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(BOSTON) -- One year after a 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti, college students around the world are still raising funds for relief efforts to help the estimated one million people displaced in the earthquake's aftermath.

Even in the best-case scenario, rebuilding will take years. But Haiti is not the best-case scenario -- violence, political uncertainty, and the recent cholera outbreak have slowed relief efforts -- and a helping hand is needed now as much as ever.

In 2010, following the earthquake, students at Dartmouth College volunteered to help in the crisis, leading school fundraising efforts in the United States for Haiti, collecting over $1.5 million in money and donations of medical supplies.

The relief group Partners in Health is helping distribute supplies on the ground by working with the Haitian government to build clinics, as well as supporting and training medical teams to provide care for more than 100,000 Haitians.

"The first $200,000 went solely to Partners in Health already on the ground. In addition, the funds since have been used by Dartmouth to send their own medical teams and supplies, and for educational initiatives to bring Haitian students to Dartmouth," said Molly Bode, a 2009 Dartmouth graduate who spearheaded the Dartmouth Haiti Response last year.

Because of Bode and the Dartmouth efforts, over 51 medical professionals and 40 tons of medical supplies have been sent to Haiti. Seven water purification systems were also sent to help with the cholera outbreak that has infected 171,304 and left 3,650 people dead since October. Each purification system can provide enough clean water for 750 families.

This week Partners in Health said more supplies are needed to prevent further death and illness. Most urgent are cholera vaccinations and large-scale municipal water and sewage treatment facilities.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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