Community Response to COVID-19
In keeping with our mission to lead change from within, we are responding to the rapidly developing COVID-19 crisis by following the lead of Red Hook Initiative staff who are also local residents and are best able to advocate and identify the needs of their neighbors.
Recognizing that social distancing is the best recommendation around COVID-19 transmission prevention, we have activated the following non-touch plans to ensure dissemination of reliable information, identification of needs for Red Hook’s most vulnerable residents, and support systems for young people facing major disruption to academic and professional plans. RHI is in regular communication with Red Hook’s elected officials and stakeholders to coordinate and advocate on behalf of our community of over 6,500 residents of public housing.
Accessing reliable information
- Daily Updates: We provide daily COVID-19 updates here (and in Spanish here) and via the Red Hook HUB.
- RHI Social Media: Our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter is updated daily with COVID-19 information and resources.
- RHI Community Center: For those who don’t have internet access, we use RHI’s glass doors (767 Hicks Street in Brooklyn) as a physical HUB for flyers and information posting.
Identifying needs of Red Hook’s most vulnerable residents
- Activating Red Hook Local Leaders: We are working with our Local Leader graduates – over 250 bi-lingual Red Hook residents – to support identification of vulnerable neighbors, sharing of critical information, and identification of community needs.
- Phone Banking & Vulnerability Survey: RHI is calling hundreds of Red Hook residents to check on an array of needs that will range from medical needs to food security.
Advocating for Red Hook’s needs including food security, medical access, employment, and education
- RHI’s leadership is in daily contact with elected officials, City Hall, City Council, and RHI’s local partners.
- We are currently working on a plan for food distribution and medical services through Red Hook Farms, NYC Green Markets, NYC Department of Health, and NYU Langone Health.
Support services for Red Hook youth
- Given the widespread closure of college and universities, our team is in touch with young adults transitioning to online coursework and traveling home to Brooklyn.
- High school youth produced a PSA video to distribute accurate information to their peers.
- Our team is in touch with parents of middle school youth to determine support systems during the duration of NYC Department of Education’s school closure.
At this time, Red Hook Initiative’s community center and farms are closed. We are augmenting our staff pattern and youth programming to allow for these services to take place from remote locations.