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Fernando Cabrera

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Helping Our Global Neighbors: One Bronx Solution to the Haiti Crisis

Posted: 01/13/10 02:05 PM ET

Our thoughts and prayers are with the families in Haiti who underwent a devastating tragedy yesterday. No one expects tragedy, but when it arrives, those in position to help have an obligation to do so. Together with the community leaders in my district, I will do all that is within my power to provide relief to those in Haiti who desperately need it.

My father was from the Dominican Republic, Haiti's island neighbor, so I have a special connection to the island and feel deeply for those who have suffered so much. My district is also home to a thriving Dominican community that empathizes with their Haitian ties. Our strong network of community leaders and clergy will turn empathy in to action by sending aid over to Haiti via the Dominican Republic as soon as possible.

Treating your neighbor as you would want to be treated is not a concept restricted to religious lexicon; it is a principle I firmly believe in and know the benefits of first hand. Helping not just our immediate neighbors, but also our global neighbors, enhances the global community, and plants the seeds of service within our local communities.

In the Bronx, the poorest county in New York, we know first hand the mal-effects poverty can have on every aspect of people's lives. Coupled with the devastation natural disasters bring, we understand the unimaginable damage that this earthquake has inflicted on Haiti. We intend to respond swiftly to this emergency, and we call on everyone who is in a position to assist to do so.

The greatest need at this hour is monetary funds and medicine. Anyone who can contribute funds to L.A.C.A State of New York, a 501(c)3, can either call (718) 842-8555, or write a check out to LACA State of New York, 1112 Garrison Ave, Bronx, NY, 10474. You can also contact our district office at (347) 590-2875 to see how else you can contribute.