When Covid 19 hit Long Island and businesses were forced to close we at Island Strong felt it was our duty to step up. Our Social Entrepreneurship model was built for unfortunate occasions like this. From the day we launched this site we have given a portion of proceeds to Long Island Charities and when our brothers and sisters were in need of assistance we made a plan. We began to sell select items at a discount and give $10 per item sold to struggling families in the form of gift cards to local businesses. Simultaneously stimulating the economy while providing relief to Long Islanders. We never thought we would raise almost $12,000 and give to 12 different families.
Understandably the request we received most often was for food supply so we teamed up with some amazing locals.
We teamed up with Alethea Shapiro, who was operating her own relief, and Center Cuts Butcher Shop in Roslyn. We donated $800 and they added $200 of their own to prepare packages of 2 whole chickens, 2lbs of cutlets, and 4 burgers given to 17 families!!
One of our biggest supporters was Dan from Eat Better Meals. He made providing relief to families easier than we could have ever imagined. We would purchase gift cards from his website, forward the email to the family and he would give them a discount code for 25% off every order! The families look through the online menus and Eat Better Meals delivers them directly to their door.
And we want to give a huge shout out to Chubs Meats in Medford. We had a few cards to buy for families in the surrounding areas and they were kind enough to throw in an ADDITIONAL $300 Gift card for us to give away!
It is thanks to all of you who purchased items and even donated money directly to the cause. We are only the vehicle, you all are the drivers. You as Long Islanders should be very proud of your individual and collaborative efforts. We certainly are.
Here are some photos and testimonials from the last few months. Some people have opted out of writing testimonials while others made our year with their poignant messages. We (at the request of the families or the loved ones who submitted for them) have kept the testimonials completely anonymous.
I was going through a difficult time both personally and financially... and then the pandemic hit. I told myself that if I could just hang in there things would start to get better in a few more weeks. The weeks turned into months and stay-at-home orders got extended, businesses were starting to pile up and I was having trouble keeping food on the table. I started to visit a local food bank once a week and I was grateful for the help; however the foods they provided were not meeting my children's nutritional needs. My car started to make a funny noise and I wondered how much longer I had until it completely broke down. I did not have the money to fix it. I was feeling hopeless.
But then the most amazing thing happened. I was contacted by Brian from Island Strong and he let me know he was organizing a relief fund care package for us. He took the time to ask just what my family needed and offered to purchase gift cards to some locally owned businesses. I was absolutely blown away by the generosity. Knowing that there are people out there who care and are willing to help others in need is very reassuring during these difficult times. It is especially comforting to know that locally owned businesses which were already suffering due to the pandemic are being supported in the process.
I am extremely grateful for the support my family received from Island Strong and to anyone who has made a purchase which contributed to the relief fund. Now my family will finally be able to eat some healthy and nutritious meals and I will be getting my car fixed as soon as possible! I know now more than ever that I am lucky to live here and we, as a community, will come out of this crisis stronger than ever. Thank you for liking our spirits!
It's hard to put into words how grateful I am. To everyone who made this possible I wanted to let you know how much I appreciate you! You eased my burden during a tough time for my family and I'm so grateful. But your donations go further than putting food on our table. They also are showing my children what a community is, and how we take care of each other. Stay strong Long Island we'll get through this! thank you to Long Island Strong, Eat better Meals, and everyone who donated!
I cannot thank Island Strong enough for their generous help with their Covid Fund!! I had submitted a request for donation for my daughter and four children, ages 21 months to 11 years. I was assisting them with food and supplies until my husband was laid off. Then it became difficult as I was trying to supply 2 households. But I was doing the best I could under the circumstances. I did without while I gave to them. Which is OK with me. Because children always come first. Then I heard about Island Strong. They were so generous with gift cards. When I gave them to my daughter she broke down in tears as did I. I didn't tell her what I was up to. So it was a big surprise. She was now able to go out and buy food for her family. The gift cards were a great idea as kids are picky eaters and she can buy them what they want. The first thing was to give them a little treat of ice cream. The smile on their faces was worth millions. And still makes me cry thinking about it. With everything going on with today's society its wonderful to know that there are really good people out there and will do anything they can to help during this pandemic. And Terrance from of Island Strong is one of those people that care about the people in the community!! Thank you again Island Strong for all your generosity. It was so greatly appreciated.
Dear Island Strong,
My Family and I wanted to take a moment to express our sincerest gratitude for your support, during one of the most difficult times in our lives. COVID-19 struck us hard in so many ways. Brian reached out to let us know help was on the way in lieu of gift cards to various local establishments. You helped eliminate so much stress and restored my faith in humanity. We would also like to thank Dan from Eatbettermeals.com, and all of the other businesses in the community who are donating their time and efforts to those in need. We wear our Island Strong gear with pride and will be paying it forward as soon as we are able. Stay Safe and thank you for caring!
I am one of the families you dropped off very generous gift cards! My family is just over the moon. I am a single mom of four children and have been working hard between my three jobs to stay afloat. I lost all my jobs due to covid -19 and have not received a dime yet. My point is this could not have come at a better time!! Ty from the bottom of our hearts
Thank you guys very much fro the gift cards honestly wa such a great help especially in these times with all this Covid-19 happening and not being able to work!