Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a volunteer effort for New York State residents to help each other clean up from Hurricane Irene's devastation in Schoharie Valley, Catskills and North Country. According to the press release, "Labor For Your Neighbor" will be a "Labor Day weekend effort to tap into the good neighbor instincts of New Yorkers and rally volunteers to pitch in on local clean-ups of public and private property following the devastation of Hurricane Irene."
Cuomo said, "In village after village and town after town, we have witnessed the wonderful spirit of New Yorkers turning out to help others in need. Grocers have thrown open their doors and given away all their food. Customers have come out to clean up local businesses and return them to operation. Neighbors have shared food, clothing and shelter. Through ‘Labor for your Neighbor, we want to stimulate even more neighbor-to-neighbor help on this long holiday weekend. We've given it a name, but there is no copyright on the kindness of friends and neighbors. While government at all levels organizes resources for the great leaps toward full recovery, individual New Yorkers can, with just a few hours of work, help their neighbors take small steps toward normalcy. As an elderly woman in Prattsville told us this week, even someone to help get the mud out of her basement would give her the hope for a new start."
Home Depot, WalMart and other companies are supplying cleaning pails, mops, shovels, rakes cleaning supplies, food, water and other equipment. The clean-ups, which will be supervised by the National Guard and State Office of Emergency Management, will take place this Sunday and Monday. The press release adds, "Volunteers will be safely shuttled into villages needing assistance, and provided appropriate supervision and equipment"—there are more details and sign-up here.
Cuomo will be volunteering, along with members of his family, too.