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City's Leading Crisis Response Groups Join Forces to Strengthen Emergency Response Network for All New Yorkers


New York, NY (June 21, 2004) The American Red Cross in Greater New York and Food Bank For New York City today announced a significant new partnership to prepare for and respond to a wide range of disasters, from summer blackouts to winter storms or acts of terrorism. The organizations worked hand-in-hand to provide food, water and other supplies to the 9/11 ground zero relief and recovery efforts, and this is the first formal agreement between these two major disaster response organizations to provide as much as 8 million pounds of food to all New Yorkers who may need it during a crisis.

The American Red Cross in Greater New York's CEO, Theresa Bischoff and the Food Bank's President and CEO, Dr. Lucy Cabrera marked the occasion by transferring the first delivery of food and other supplies from one of the Food Bank's 18-wheelers to the Red Cross' emergency response vehicles at Red Cross headquarters in Manhattan. The partnership is part of a national effort by America's Second Harvest — the nation's largest hunger-relief organization — and the American Red Cross to strengthen the emergency response network in communities across the country.

"This partnership is a natural next step in a relationship that was forged in the days and weeks following 9/11," said Dr. Lucy Cabrera, president and CEO of the Food Bank. "Our organizations worked hand-in-hand to provide food, water and other supplies to the ground zero relief and recovery efforts. And since 9/11, the Food Bank has developed an extensive disaster recovery plan that will enable us, in partnership with the Red Cross, to distribute as much as eight million pounds of food in the event of a crisis."

"The American Red Cross in Greater New York responds to about 8 fire and other emergencies a day where we provide food, clothing, temporary shelter, counseling and other assistance. Today's agreement will enable us to expand our ability to serve all New Yorkers during any crisis. As we are taking extra steps to prepare before an emergency, we urge all New Yorkers to do the same," said Theresa Bischoff, CEO of The Red Cross in Greater New York.

By coupling the Food Bank's expertise and efficiency in food distribution with the Red Cross' capabilities in responding to disasters, the organizations will deliver nourishing food quickly to those who need it the most. As part of the initiative, the Food Bank has transferred water, power bars, coffee and other essential supplies to Red Cross store for immediate use. The organizations are also working on joint training exercises in preparation for potential disasters.

ABOUT THE AMERICAN RED CROSS IN GREATER NEW YORK
The American Red Cross in Greater New York helps people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. We also help them rebuild their lives after an emergency. In addition to responding to major disasters like September 11, 2001, the American Red Cross in Greater New York responds to an average of 8 emergencies a day such as fires, water main breaks and building collapses. The Red Cross also offers a variety of health and safety classes such as First Aid, CPR and classes to help people prepare for an emergency. To register for a health and safety class contact 1.800.514.5103. For general inquiries call 1.877.RED.CROSS or visit www.nyredcross.org.

ABOUT THE FOOD BANK
An estimated 1.5 million New Yorkers are turning to emergency food assistance to avoid going hungry. More than half of them are children and the elderly. Food Bank For New York City, the city's major supplier of food for the hungry, provides the food for over 200,000 free meals served each day by more than 1,000 nonprofit community food programs in the five boroughs.

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