Social service agencies join forces for Sandy recovery

CERT members giving out water in Ridgefield. (Macklin Reid photo)

In the wake of the destruction wrought by Hurricane Sandy, more than two dozen social service providers and government agencies from the greater Norwalk area have come together to form a task force to maximize resources and meet the short term needs of neighbors who have been impacted by this devastating storm.

The task force is sponsoring a “Help for Hope” community event on Saturday, Nov. 3 from 3 to 6 p.m. at South Norwalk’s Nathaniel Ely School located at 11 Ingalls Ave. The event will provide a hot meal and bring disaster relief information, encouragement and inspiration to residents who have suffered from damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, the organizers said.

Social service agencies will be present to offer information on services and programs available to assist families who are in need of food, medical attention, shelter, clothing and home clean-up and repairs. Games, face painting and other activities will be organized for children who attend the event.

The meetings, which have been organized by Norwalk’s Office of Emergency Management and have been held at the offices of NEON, the city’s Community Action Agency, have focused on identifying the community’s disaster relief needs, locating resources to address those needs and assigning organizations specific tasks to get the work done.

Urgent needs the new task force is currently addressing include:

  • Providing food/medicines and other commodities to families and individuals in need
  • Collection & distribution of clean-up supplies
  • Collection of construction materials & recruitment of skilled volunteers to help with home repairs
  • Provide immediate referrals to residents in need of health care and mental health services
  • Appealing to area residents and businesses for monetary contributions to support local relief efforts
  • Working with area’s faith-based community to coordinate relief efforts and recruit volunteers

To donate food, supplies, money or to volunteer your time for the relief effort, contact one of the representatives of the Greater Norwalk Hurricane Sandy Social Services Task Force listed below:

1) Chiquita Stephenson, NEON – 203-451-5567
2) Christie Pope, Christian Community Action – 203-939-1650

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