Pelham Volunteers Heading to Howard Beach

Pelham group organizing volunteer trip to Howard Beach this weekend.

It only takes a spark to get a fire going; so go the lyrics of contemporary hymn called Pass It On and the intentions of the newly formed Pelham Community SANDY Relief Team.

With the goal of providing "immediate and long-term help and hope to victims of Hurricane Sandy in nearby communities," a group of Pelham volunteers including co-coordinators Kristen Bidwell and Kathie O'Callahan are using the Huguenot Memorial Church office as 'command central' with volunteers Tina Constable, Beja Keyser, Kathy Shea, Rachel Collens, Page Edmunds, Jeff Marcks, Bill Hoare, Lance Koonce, Syd Thayer, Rev. Steve Michie, Rev. Jacob Bolton and Eric Smith.

The group is soliciting donations for victims of Hurricane Sandy and asking people to volunteer their time and labor.

The core group of volunteers got together Wednesday and are mobilizing with efficient, lightning-like speed to marshall a donation drive and volunteer trip this Saturday to Howard Beach, an area hard hit by Hurricane Sandy last week.

If you would like to get involved, the team welcomes your participation in a Relief Run to St. Helen's Church in Howard Beach from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday leaving from Huguenot Memorial Church parking lot at 901 Pelhamdale Ave, Pelham Manor, NY. Cars will be packed with supplies then caravan to Howard Beach.

Given the conditions, this trip is not for the very young or faint of heart. The group needs adult volunteers who are prepared and able to deal with the safety and sanitation challenges in the storm-stricken area.

Even if you can't go with the group, Kelly hopes everyone in the community will consider dropping off donations to the Main Kitchen of the church starting today between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

"These are being collected for this and other runs since we will be making as many relief runs as needed and as possible in the coming days and weeks," stated Kelly in her appeal.

If you would like to get involved, email Kristen Bidwell:kbidwell@me.com or Kathie O'Callaghan: kathieo55@gmail.com. You can also contact the Huguenot Memorial Church office: phone:(914) 738. 3488 or email:info@huguenotchurch.

Pelham Community SANDY Relief Team will also have a newsletter. You can sign up at this link to the church's website.

Urgent Donation Needs 


  • Work gloves, face masks
  • Batteries, flashlights
  • Thick black contractor bags
  • Heavy-duty power and extension cords
  • Power strips
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Lights (to plug in)
  • Generators, water pumps (These all need to be CLEARLY marked so that we can distribute them easily and quickly.)

Blankets, socks, clean adult underwear, jackets, hats, scarves, gloves/mittens, etc. are ALWAYS welcomed, but no other clothes can be accepted at this time! We no longer need clothing at any of the locations!

Medicine/First Aid Items

  • Baby cough medicine
  • Band-Aids
  • Neosporin
  • Ace bandages
  • Advil, Tylenol, aspirin.

Please make sure the above are CLEARLY labeled in packets and we can start giving people band-aids and baby cough medicine.

Personal Care Items

  • Razors
  • Toothpaste & brushes
  • Personal wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Deodorant

Baby and Children Items

  • Jars of baby food
  • Baby formula and bottles
  • Children's toys
  • Diapers
  • Baby wipes

Food Items

  • Water
  • Orange, Apple - juiceboxes
  • Granola bars, canned goods, powdered milk
  • Jelly (have lots of peanut butter!)
  • Bread, soup
  • Pet food (including hamster food!)

Sandy Relief Volunteer Checklist 

What to wear, what to bring this Saturday...

Volunteer Needs

  • Waterproof shoes/work boots
  • Work gloves
  • Latex gloves to go underneath work gloves
  • Proper respirators if possible, paper masks
  • Long-sleeved shirt

Be well-prepared before going with safety in mind; i.e., proper boots, gloves, long sleeve shirts, etc.

  • Head lamp
  • Flashlight, extra batteries
  • Markers and pens, paper

Volunteer Materials to Bring

  • Shovels
  • Duct tape
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Rope
  • Tarps (things to help keep drafts out)
  • Thick contractor-sized trash bags
  • Extra Flashlights & batteries
  • Paper, pens, markers

Cleaning Supplies

  • Mops and mop heads
  • Brooms (especially push brooms)
  • White Vinegar - better than bleach, by the gallon
  • Buckets, scrub brushes
  • Garbage pails
  • Wipes

Team Suggestions - based upon Team trips made recently by team member:
Drivers will want to cover their car seats with plastic sheeting or tarps to keep them clean.

A Patcher November 15, 2012 at 11:21 PM
God Bless these volunteers and those who formed the "Pelham Community SANDY Relief Team." I am happy to see you have such a clear idea of what the volunteers need for their own protection and safety, as well as what is needed to do the job at hand. May God keep you all safe and healthy as you so unselfishly give your time and money to help those effected by hurricane Sandy. Our prayers are with you and with the needy.


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