Lending a helping hand after Sandy
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As Nassau County’s Human Rights commissioner, a volunteer position to help fight discrimination, Abid knows a thing or two about protecting people’s dignity, and doing it for free. While volunteering at the shelter, he saw people who were suffering and who were worried about the future. Yet, he said, he also saw a spirit of hope.
In fact, Abid said, despite the circumstances, the atmosphere at the shelter was very cordial. “They were very peaceful, very calm, very appreciative of the services provided by Red Cross,” he said of the people there.
The Red Cross provided people at the shelter with meals, blankets, water and juice, blankets, pillows and cots. There was a big screen television so people could watch the news to pass the time. Kids played games. Seniors huddled together.
Abid said that many of the more than 100 volunteers were high school and college students. He said helping out was a rewarding experience, and noted how prepared the Red Cross was to handle the disaster — perhaps more than any other agency.
“I believe the Red Cross has done a tremendous job of helping these victims,” he said. “A lot of them might have lost their homes.”