Immediately following the hurricane, K.I.D.S.’ team members were on the ground responding to the needs of individuals and families severely stricken by this Superstorm. While some K.I.D.S. team members evaluated the storm’s damage in Brooklyn and East Rockaway, others distributed clothing, hats, gloves and diapers in Coney Island. To date, K.I.D.S. has distributed well over $3 million worth of critical relief supplies to victims of Hurricane Sandy. Below are a few examples of children and families that have benefited from K.I.D.S.’ Hurricane Sandy Relief Efforts.
In Brooklyn, K.I.D.S. team members distributed kid-essentials: socks, undergarments, sweatpants and sweatshirts. It was here that we met Kitley, a struggling mother of three, who had experienced the damage and displacement of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. “I couldn’t believe this was happening to me again. I lost all of my children’s winter clothing, but thankfully, K.I.D.S. came when I needed help,” said Kitley.
It is clear that K.I.D.S.’ services are of dire importance to those affected by the storm. Sandy continues to challenge the lives of adults and children alike. K.I.D.S. is proud to have already distributed well over $340,000 worth of children’s winter clothing and blankets, as well as $170,000 worth of winter shoes and boots to help families like Kitley’s. All of this was made possible thanks to our generous product donors: Jockey International, Kahn Lucas, Nano, and UGG Australia.
In the midst of immense pain and destruction, stories of hope and rebuilding are a beacon of light. Currently, K.I.D.S., in partnership with The Legacy Center (TLC), is in the process of reconstructing a home-based daycare center in Rockaway, owned by Damaris, a TLC volunteer. In the note below, The Legacy Center’s Operation Director, Diana Denis, speaks about Damaris’ loss:
Damaris is a TLC volunteer and a mother of three. She and her husband bought their dream home in Far Rockaway a few years ago. She opened a private daycare center in her home over a year ago. When her husband, Pedro, became physically disabled and could no longer work, their daycare center became the major source of the family’s income. Hurricane Sandy destroyed her first floor, taking her children's bedroom furniture, their clothing, and living, dining and kitchen furniture. The biggest hit, however, was losing the daycare center.
There are countless other stories of families suffering immense loss, but K.I.D.S. will not be deterred by those numbers. As David Coleman, K.I.D.S’ Interim President states: “Whether it’s addressing the day-to-day challenges of poverty and homelessness, or taking action at a moment’s notice to address the needs of children and families who are struck by a natural disaster like Sandy, it’s been K.I.D.S. mission for 27 years to offer hope and let people know someone cares.” There is indeed hope, and we thank you for making K.I.D.S.' work possible.
Please find photos of our team on the ground in Coney Island and Rockaway, and a big thank you from the K.I.D.S. team, attached!
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