Archive for the tag 'vollies'

sb_heart911HEART 9/11, a disaster response organization dedicated to facilitating physical and emotional recovery after traumatic events, is offering an eight-week Resilience Boot Camp course for residents of Gerritsen Beach and the surrounding area who were impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

The program, which is free of charge, will teach mindfulness and stress reduction skills to better manage traumatic situations and improve resilience.

Weekly sessions will take place at the Gerritsen Beach Fire Department “Vollies,” 52 Seba Avenue, every Thursday from March 27 to May 22, 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Once trained, community members will be able to offer the program in their own community to others on an on-going basis.

“With the number of natural disasters on the rise, this is an important step to creating permanent improvements in the psychological health of individuals, families and communities impacted by disaster,” said Dr. Leo Flanagan, HEART 9/11’s, director of Community Resilience.

Resilience Boot Camp’s benefits to participants include:

  • Increased well-being and happiness
  • Ability to set and achieve goals that are important to you
  • Reduce feelings of stress and negativity
  • Recovery from cognitive, emotional, and social impacts of traumatic events
  • Improved behavioral and physical health post-disaster

To register for Resilience Boot Camp, email katiechace@heart911.org or call (862) 902-5471 extension 101. For more information, visit www.heart911.org.

Photo by Erica Sherman

Just a reminder that State Senator Marty Golden will be holding another in a series of follow-up town hall meetings for those affected by Superstorm Sandy, January 24, 7:00 p.m. at Public School 277, 2529 Gerritsen Avenue.

Also, another reminder that the final day residents affected by Sandy may apply for assistance from FEMA is Monday, January 28. FEMA has a nearby Disaster Recovery Center at the Gerritsen Beach Volunteer Fire Department, 43 Seba Avenue, everyday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The following agencies have been invited to the meeting: Rapid Repairs, Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit, National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), FEMA, Department of Financial Services (Insurance), Department of Buildings, Department of Health, Department of Finance, the 61st Precinct, Department of Environmental Protection, National Grid and Con Edison.

For further information, contact Golden’s office at (718) 238-6044.

State Senator Marty Golden. Photo by Erica Sherman

State Senator Marty Golden will host two follow-up town hall meetings for those affected by Superstorm Sandy.

The first meeting will be held January 16, 7:00 p.m. at the Sheepshead Bay Yacht Club, 3076 Emmons Avenue. FEMA has a Disaster Recovery Center stationed at the Sheepshead Bay Yacht Club, everyday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

The second follow-up town hall for those affected by Sandy will be held January 24, 7:00 p.m. at Public School 277, 2529 Gerritsen Avenue. FEMA also has a Disaster Recovery Center at the Gerritsen Beach Volunteer Fire Department, 43 Seba Avenue, everyday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The following agencies have been invited to both meetings: Rapid Repairs, Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit, National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), FEMA, Department of Financial Services (Insurance), Department of Buildings, Department of Health, Department of Finance, the 61st Precinct, Department of Environmental Protection, National Grid and Con Edison.

For further information, contact Golden’s office at (718) 238-6044.

Paul Paradiso, left, Michele Thorne and Christopher Thorne at Gerritsen Beach Fire Department hall on Thursday.

By Paul Moses

Owning little more than he wore, Paul Paradiso lumbered forward on crutches into the cool dark training hall of the Gerrittsen Beach Fire Department to see if he could find some clothes.

A bar-on-a-barge floated into Gerritsen Beach. Neighbors lightened the mood by sharing shots in it after the water receded.

Doreen Garson, assistant chief of the Vollies, as the volunteer department is called, told him to look inside the big plastic bags heaped on a set of folding tables– there weren’t enough people available yet to sort clothes local residents had donated.

Like nearly everyone living in Gerritsen Beach’s old section, Paradiso, 42, was wiped out Monday night by the rising floodwaters from Hurricane Sandy. The couch floated in the living room of his Canton Court home and the refrigerator flipped over and drifted in the kitchen. His wife, Michele Thorne, 45, said she nearly drowned trying to move their Volvo to safety; she and her 17-year-old daughter got out when the window opened automatically. Then they linked arms and held onto a street pole to withstand the water gushing through their street.

There are harrowing stories to be heard everywhere in Gerritsen Beach, as in Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach, Coney Island, Sea Gate and Rockaway. But somehow, Gerritsen Beach has largely escaped attention, especially in the daily newspapers. The New York Post did, however, run a 150-word story in Thursday morning’s paper that called the Gerritsen Beach “the forgotten disaster zone.” A few broadcast news operations then reported from the neighborhood on Thursday.

“We sort of got lost in the mix over here,” Thorne said as she paused from looking through piles of clothes to find a coat for her 12-year-old son, Christopher Thorne. When she had the opportunity on Wednesday, she posted her own message-in-a-bottle on Facebook, saying that “We need help” and “nobody knows how bad it is out here.”

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Source: gbfd.net

In 1922, after a fire destroyed a house in Gerritsen Beach, residents came together to form the Gerrittsen Beach Fire Department, the only all-volunteer fire department in Brooklyn.

The GBFD is celebrating its 90th anniversary with a journal compiling photos and stories of the “Vollies” throughout the years. From their press release:

Everybody who has ever lived in Gerrittsen Beach has seen the Vollies in action whether it be a summer brush fire, investigating odors, operating at a car accident or even in your own house treating your family or plugging a broken pipe. In order to make this journal a success we need to hear your stories. Please share any photos or personal stories you may have with us so we can document the past ninety years of Brooklyn’s only Volunteer Fire Department.

The journals will be available at the 90th Anniversary Dinner on October 20 at AOH Hall 2750 Gerritsen Avenue.

The Vollies are also encouraging local businesses to take out ads in the journal to help its funding.

Please send any photos, stories, ad inquiries or questions to Pat Klein at journal@gbfd.net or call 718-332-9292 and leave a message with the dispatcher on duty.