Donations of assorted supplies to help Hurricane Sandy victims started coming in so quickly to the New City firehouse on Saturday that volunteer firefighters and their family members quickly ran out of tape for boxes of supplies they were putting together.
"The response from the community has been amazing," said 2nd Asst. Chief
Dennis Rodriguez. "People are showing they really care."
The volunteers of the New City Fire Department are planning to make a special trip to Breezy Point with a truck loaded with supplies to support the relief and recovery effort in that severely damaged community. New City FD members on Saturday opened up the doors of the firehouse on Maple Avenue so the public could drop off a wide variety of supplies — ranging from work gloves and cleaning supplies to blankets, water and even pet food.
The drive continues today, Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and then continues Monday, Nov. 12, to Friday, Nov. 16, 6 to 9 p.m. each day.
As New City firefighters and their family members sorted, packed and stacked supplies that came in for the donation drive, they were excited by the response they were receiving from the community.
Rodriguez said supplies came in to the firehouse houses before the drive began. He noted that one of the first donations to come in was from a family that drove to New City from Rhode Island in a car that was jam-packed with donations. Rodriguez said the family originally planned to drive right to Breezy Point with their donations, but heard from a friend about the New City FD effort and drove to the Maple Avenue firehouse to drop off their donations.
New City Fire Chief Kenny Flynn said he has received calls and e-mails from as far as California from people wanting to help with the donation drive. Patch received an e-mail from a Florida resident seeking to donate clothing for residents of Breezy Point. However, the New City FD drive is not collecting clothing or coats. Instead, the fire department is focusing on many other items needed in Breezy Point.
Here are items being sought:
- Non-perishable food items, such as canned soups/vegetables, canned soups, boxed pasta, etc.
- Cases of water.
- Cases of sports drinks, such as Gatorade.
- Coffee/Tea/hot chocolate mixes
- Personal hygiene items such as soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste, contact lens solution, etc.
- Baby wipes/diapers.
- Cleaning materials.
- Work gloves.
- All sizes of batteries.
- Extension cords
- Sleeping bags
- Pet food (pre-packaged)
Donations that came in to the firehouse on Saturday ranged from small bags of canned food to carloads filled with water, food and blankets. One parent dropping off boxes of food and cleaning supplies had his two elementary-school age children with them, and had them help him unload the supplies so they could have the hands-on experience of helping others.
As Rocklanders drove into one of the fire truck bays at the firehouse to drop off their supplies, many asked what else was needed and they went out to buy more items to be donated.
If you go: The New City firehouse is located at 15 Maple Ave., New City, opposite Clarkstown Town Hall, just off Congers Road. Firefighters are directing cars into the firehouse, where supplies are then unloaded by the firefighters and then sorted, stacked, packaged and prepared for shipment.
For more information on the donation effort or on donating other goods or services, contact Flynn by e-mail at email@example.com