Last Friday, May 23rd, was a happy day for many Red Hook senior citizens: NYCHA announced the relocation of the RAICES Red Hook Senior Citizens Program, which was devastated by Superstorm Sandy last October. The storm destroyed the previous senior center, which had served about 100 seniors within its daily programs.
“We are delighted that we are able to relocate our seniors in this very valuable RAICES Red Hook Senior Citizens Program to a new location that will continue to serve their needs,” said NYCHA Chairman John Rhea. The program has been alive for more than twenty years, and Rhea says he is glad that the tradition will now be able to continue.
Councilwoman Sara Gonzalez is largely responsible for the successful relocation of the program, which will now be held in a nearby vacant community facility. Thanks to her coordination efforts, $1.8 million in funding has been designated for the senior center by the City Council.
“When I witnessed the trauma Red Hook seniors were experiencing by losing their home away from home in the aftermath of Sandy, I immediately began a series of negotiations with Chairman Rhea and his staff at NYCHA, the Department for the Aging and community leaders to secure a new space for our seniors,” she said.
Gonzalez continued, adding, “I believe seniors are a true treasure in our community. All that we enjoy, we really owe to them. We can never do enough to repay them for all they’ve done for us.”
Among the programs RAICES offers to seniors are counseling services, breakfast and lunch daily, exercise and health programs, assistance with major benefits and entitlements, mental health services, crisis intervention, treatment for mental illnesses, and more.