10 Months - Semeo Doe and Nelson Sarweh. The Action Center - Far Rockaway
More than half of the public housing in the borough of Queens is in Far Rockaway. In the 1950s, Robert Moses’ urban renewal plan moved New York’s poorest residents to cheap land by the coastline. Thousands of units in high-rise public housing now create a concentrated poverty on the eastern end of the Rockaway peninsula.
Since Hurricane Sandy, one of the only community organizations still providing hot food, medical care, education and relocation and legal services to the residents of Far Rockaway is The Action Center at 57-10 Beach Channel Drive. For the past 12 years, they have relied predominantly on private grant money to sustain their work. The Action Center received no further funding from the millions of dollars of Hurricane Sandy aid raised by federal and nonprofit organizations. However, they were presented with the Mayor’s award for exceptional community service. This award came with no monetary attachment.