Months after Hurricane Sandy hit the region, local residents still have outstanding needs, and their fellow members of the community still have a desire to help.
That's why Margate resident Sheila Friedman had an idea to help supply five local families with all kinds of household items they lost during October's storm.
Friedman collected thousands of dollars worth of supplies recently at the "One Jewish Community Sandy Recovery Shower" at the Milton and Betty Katz JCC of Atlantic County on North Jerome Avenue in Margate.
The items filled the stage under a banner that read, "One Jewish Community."
Friedman said she got a list of five families in need whose homes were badly damaged from the Jewish Family Service of Atlantic and Cape May counties. She solicited donations from 12 local Jewish organizations.
"I'm so proud of our community," she said. "The outpouring of generosity is incredible."
Friedman likened the fundraiser to a shower - providing the families with items for the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom for a family starting in a new home. The items were to be distributed within a week of the event to help them get back on their feet in a new home, she said.
"When I saw the devastation in our community I thought we need to come together and help out," she said. "As a community, we can do so much when we put our resources together."
Even though there have been lots of local fundraisers to help Sandy victims, Deena Rotches, a co-organizer, said there was no fatigue from people who wanted to help out.
"People thanked us for the opportunity to participate," the Ventnor resident said. "People feel the pain others have gone through with this storm."
Andrea Steinberg, executive director for Jewish Family Services, said this was a good Sandy event where everyone could participate.
"People long for a way to help," she said. "Not everyone can do heavy lifting (by renovating damaged buildings)."
One of the residents who came Wednesday to help out was Margate resident Portia Parto, who has been collecting goods since the storm for JFS at the St. James Elementary School in Ventnor. She said she has no thoughts about stopping to volunteer for this cause.
"I figured I might as well finish it," she said.
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