Team Work Scores For Sandy Homeowners

Team Work Scores For Sandy Homeowners

Gina Grubbs


NYAC - Disaster Ministries - Done in a DayThe field was set. The teams were ready. There was a kickoff, play-action passes, interceptions and definitely some touchdowns. Saturday, February 1 kicked off our first “Done in a Day” Sandy recovery effort.

The call to action was answered. With homes as far west as Island Park and as far east as Babylon, there was much work to be done and many ways to spread hope. Volunteer teams from the New York Annual Conference, the Presbytery of Long Island, Unitarian Universalists, and Elon University shared their time and talents with homeowners. God’s light was shining, both indoors and out as the weather was a mild 50 degrees. Approximately 50 volunteers worked on seven homes.

“I have met so many great volunteers and homeowners,” said one volunteer. “It’s one of the reasons I keep coming back . . . that and learning new skills. It truly is an inspiring experience.” This was a common theme as I walked through the home sites, witnessing the bonding over buckets of paint and laughter through demolition. It brought a smile to my face and joy to the homeowners’ hearts.

And, just to make their volunteer experience even better, the team of students from Elon University was able to take the train to New York City and participate in the festivities along “Super Bowl Boulevard.”

When asked what was most surprising about the current recovery situation, a first-time volunteer said, “It’s surprising that the homes look nice on the outside, but when you walk in the front door it is complete devastation. There are no walls or floor or heat. It’s crazy and it’s unacceptable.” Which brings the most important point home: It is unacceptable. The “Done in a Day” program is trying to help and it looks like we are off to a good start.

So while the nation was contemplating who would win the big game, there was big game going on in Long Island, the volunteer game. Yes there was a kickoff and some play

Teams worked on seven homes for the “Done In A Day” program on February 1. Above, Stephania Petit and Gus Sagredo, from left, check in with one of the teams working on Long Island.

action. There was passing (of paint brushes and crow bars). There were interceptions (of homeowners’ despair) and of course there were the touchdowns (bringing hope, love and help to those who need it most). Everybody came out a winner!

Call to Action: “Done in a Day” is moving forward. Please consider volunteering for our next date, March 1. To work in Brooklyn, call Gillian Prince at 718-594-7972; for Staten Island, call Samantha Christian at 347-252-7979; and on Long Island, call Peggy Racine at 516-795-1322.

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NYAC Sandy Recovery for updates on “Done in a Day” and volunteer opportunities!