Like the waves that crash on its beaches, time after time over its 100-year history Coney Island and its amusement parks have been razed to the ground by fire and flood, only to rise like a phoenix from the ashes and return bigger and better than ever.
How should we approach the reconstruction and restoration? We must first answer the question of how we can help both the people and the bay they live on prepare for, withstand and emerge stronger from an acute crisis like Sandy. Five key steps could help to accomplish this goal.
This Thanksgiving morning was spent in the Rockaways to participate in providing a holiday meal for an anticipated 500 guests. The helping hands and open hearts that gathered to share the day with a community in need was stunning.
Sometimes it seems strange to give thanks for what we have when so much has been taken away. I went to the Rockaways for the first time the weekend after Hurricane Sandy hit New York, and then again this past weekend.
Gather supplies, fill the car, hand donations directly to the people who need them and provide hope with your kindness and compassion. Speak to people -- ask their needs and gather contact information, and spread the word.