Fast track grants for 26 neighborhood groups

Stepping up its efforts to support Brooklyn’s recovery from Superstorm Sandy, the Brooklyn Recovery Fund (BRF) on Nov. 21 announced it was awarding its first round of fast track grants to 26 neighborhood organizations in the borough.

Launched by the Brooklyn Community Foundation with support from the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President, the Brooklyn Recovery Fund raised $1.5 million in less than three weeks, with support from a broad spectrum of donors – including founding contributions from the Barclays Center, Brooklyn Nets and Forest City Ratner – as well as other corporations, foundations and hundreds of individual contributions via online and mobile giving.

Following an expedited open application and review process, the BRF has awarded $250,000 to 26 community nonprofits serving all the neighborhoods most affected by the storm such as Brighton Beach, Canarsie, Coney Island, DUMBO, Gerritsen Beach, Red Hook and Williamsburg. These first round grants are focused on basic services – providing emergency food, home visits to seniors and the disabled, cash assistance, benefits counseling, volunteer coordination, making spaces usable for services, and similar high priority activities. This follows an earlier $25,000 grant to Gerritsen Beach Cares, which is using its grant to coordinate work by local electricians to expedite the restoration power to high priority occupied homes in which seniors, the disabled and families with small children live.

“The suffering in the aftermath of the Storm demanded that we act strongly and swiftly to raise money and get it out to local nonprofit organizations who immediately stepped forward to help residents of their communities with food, shelter, supplies, clean-up, health care, and warmth said Marilyn Gelber, president of the Brooklyn Community Foundation. “The generosity of the Brooklyn community has allowed us to announce a first round of $250,000 in fast track grants to 26 organizations working in our most damaged communities. This is only the beginning of the recovery process but we hope that these grants will provide an extra boost of support and hope during this Thanksgiving Holiday”

“It is very exciting to know that the money people have donated is on the ground and being used to help those in neighborhoods affected by Hurricane Sandy,” said Carlo A. Scissura, president and CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce. “People across Brooklyn have opened their wallets since the storm, and now that money is making a difference in so many coastal communities across the borough. This would not be possible without the generous support of so many Brooklynites. I want to thank everyone who donated to the Fund and I want to commend the Brooklyn Community Foundation and its President Marilyn Gelber, Chairman Alan Fishman, and the entire team at the Foundation, along with Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, for starting the Fund and for being at the forefront of all that concerns Brooklyn.”

“For our hardest hit Brooklyn neighborhoods, time is of the essence when it comes to providing emergency relief for basic needs such as food, cash and home visits—support our most affected residents need sooner than later. That’s why the Brooklyn Recovery Fund is focusing on Brooklynites helping Brooklynites and is putting these 26 grants on the fast track,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “My office is proud to be a partner, and I applaud the Brooklyn Community Foundation and the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, as well as founding contributors Barclays Center, the Brooklyn Nets and Forest City Ratner. And, of course, bravo to the individuals, corporations, foundations and nonprofits who have given so much toward this relief effort, which will help Brooklyn rebuild, rebound and recover—and come back bigger and better than ever.”

About the Brooklyn Recovery Fund

The Brooklyn Recovery Fund is a joint effort between the Brooklyn Community Foundation, the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President and the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce to create a pooled fund to provide support to Brooklyn’s nonprofit organizations working with the communities and individuals most affected by Hurricane Sandy.

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