Mission & History

Mission Statement

The Lower East Side Long Term Recovery Group (the LES LTRG) is a coalition of community groups and institutions that will cooperatively coordinate our response, resources, preparedness planning and training in response to Hurricane Sandy and in the event of future disasters. Our work will focus on Manhattan’s Community Board 3 area and the immediately adjacent neighborhoods that our groups may serve.

Future disasters may be events that disrupt/dislocate residents, disrupt power, communications, transportation, cause shortages in basic goods and services, threaten life and/or the community’s built environment.

The LES LTRG is inclusive and open to community groups, organizations, and institutions that wish to be actively involved in responding and preparing collaboratively.

As such, the Coalition will address the following to ensure that even the most vulnerable in the community are prepared, trained for and recover from disaster:

  1. To formulate, coordinate and provide for the dissemination of information related to Disaster Response and Preparedness that serves both residential and institutional use, collectively serving the welfare of the wider community.
  2. To formulate, coordinate and provide for a long-term recovery and mitigation in response to Sandy or future disasters, which serves both residential and institutional use, collectively serving the welfare of the wider community.
  3. To advocate for and thereby assure additional long-term assistance in the wake of Sandy or future disasters to the most vulnerable affected populations who are eligible for basic needs, referrals, and other additional needs that the LES LTRG might advocate as necessary.

History

It all began when Superstorm Sandy made its way to New York and the Lower East Side. With the loss of power, water, communications and heat, residents, businesses and organizations across Lower East Side neighborhoods turned to one another to find a way through the disaster. From this “boots on the ground” experience of so many groups responding to the needs of neighbors and neighborhoods, the Long Term Recovery Group was born. Our first meeting took place March 11, 2013 hosted at the Chinese-American Planning Council.

Since that time, the Lower East Side Long Term Recovery Group (LES LTRG) has grown into a coalition of over 25 community groups and institutions. Our commitment to the neighborhoods and one another is that we will work to cooperatively coordinate our response, resources, preparedness, planning and training not only in relation to Sandy and its aftermath but in future disaster situations as well.  Our Executive Committee and the full coalition meet once per month.

With a focus on Manhattan’s Community Board 3 area and the immediately adjacent neighborhoods that our groups may serve, the LTRG has recently taken on the name: LESReady! We work to ready our selves, our organizations and our neighborhoods for advocacy, future disasters and to sustain the response and rebuilding needed as a result of Sandy.

LES Ready! is inclusive and open to community groups, organizations, and institutions that want to be actively involved in planning, advocacy and responding to disaster related issues. We seek to ensure that all stakeholders, especially the most vulnerable in the community are prepared, trained for and recover from disaster.

The coalition is open to a variety of groups including: nonprofits, tenant organizations, small businesses, HDFCs, governmental agencies, political leaders, and national groups. Membership can be voting or non-voting. All groups are asked to identify what resources they bring to support the common effort.

LESReady! has launched this website and a Facebook and Twitter page to provide information for members and the general public on Sandy on disaster preparedness and community resources.

LESReady! demonstrates the resilience of the Lower East Side. Together we make a way when challenges arise. Together we help rebuild and recover. Together we advocate for resources and public policy that makes the Lower East Side, where we live and work, safer now and in the future.