Councilman Eric Ulrich gathered with local leaders last week to announce that his office has secured discretionary funding to cover the cost of bringing the Doe Fund to Rockaway Park's Beach 116th Street.
“This program is helping revitalize one of Rockaway’s main commercial strips,” said Ulrich. “The small business owners here embody the heart and soul of the peninsula. They’re resilient, hard-working and provide dozens of jobs to local residents.”
Krzysztof Sadlej, executive director of the Beach 116th Street Partnership, said he is happy to see funding for cleaning up Beach 116th Street, which has as a neighborhood gone through a rough couple of years. He said keeping the shopping corridor free of litter “is crucial to the continued success of our main shopping corridor.”
“The merchants on Beach 116th St. have worked hard to rebuild their businesses for the last two summers since Sandy,” Sadlej said. “Thanks to their collaborative efforts, the commercial corridor looks better than it has in years.”
George McDonald has been involved with providing assistance to homeless New Yorkers since the 1980s. After a woman known as “Mama” to the transients at Grand Central Station froze to death while clinging to a scarf McDonald had given her one Christmas morning, he realized he needed to do more to help than just hand out food and clothing. At that moment, the Doe Fund was born.
Today, McDonald and his colleagues help more than 1,000 people every day in their one-year transitional assistance program for homeless and formally incarcerated individuals, providing them with work, housing and other services.
“The 'men in blue' who will service this beautiful district are taking the first steps towards restoring their lives and reclaiming their place in society,” said McDonald.