NPPA & NPPF Launch Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund

Nov 19, 2012
Firefighters arriving in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Long Island were confronted with streets flooded by storm surge and they were unable to stop a wind-driven wildfire than destroyed more than 110 homes. Photograph by Todd Maisel-New York Daily News
Firefighters arriving in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Long Island were confronted with streets flooded by storm surge and they were unable to stop a wind-driven wildfire than destroyed more than 110 homes. Photograph by Todd Maisel-New York Daily News

DURHAM, NC – The National Press Photographers Association, along with the National Press Photographers Foundation, today announced a joint effort to help photojournalists who were displaced or affected by Hurricane Sandy.  

The NPPA and NPPF Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund has been established to help photojournalists who have lost their homes, lost their jobs, or been otherwise adversely affected by the storm that struck the Northeast at the end of October.

The application form to seek support from the NPPA/NPPF Hurricane Sandy fund is now online here.

In addition to photojournalist Al Bello's home being destroyed for the second time in as many years by storm surges (see earlier story), New York Daily News night photo editor Kevin Coughlin told News Photographer magazine that his home in Freeport, NY, was also destroyed. Coughlin's house is currently being ripped out by a demolition crew and treated for mold. He also reports that former Newsday staff photographer Paul Bereswill had his Freeport house destroyed by the storm, along with Daily News staff photographer Debbie Egan-Chin's house in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Queens. And photojournalist Mark Dye's apartment, his possessions, and car were destroyed in the storm.

“As the NPPA and NPPF did in 2005 for our colleagues who were devastated by Hurricane Katrina’s impact on the Gulf Coast, we will now take-up the cause of helping those in need today,” NPPA president Sean D. Elliot said today. 

“Dubbed a ‘superstorm,’ Sandy has affected the lives of residents of states from Virginia to Massachusetts and among those residents are photojournalists who’s job it was to go into the storm and document it’s effect on the lives and property in their communities,” Elliot said. “The NPPA believes it is our duty to help those who were also devastated by the storm that had to work to cover.”

NPPA and NPPF are soliciting donations from the journalism community and the public alike. The NPPF, often referred to simply as “the Foundation,” is an IRS-approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

To contribute your tax-deductible gift via credit card of Paypal, go to the Foundation’s Web site and click on the “Donate” button before December 21, 2012. Or you can send a check to: Frank Folwell, NPPF Treasurer, 1175 Huntover Court, McLean, VA, 22102. Make checks payable to NPPF/Sandy Relief Fund. 

A special ad-hoc committee of the NPPA and NPPF will meet to review applications for relief and disburse funds early in the new year, Elliot said.

Also announced today, NPPA and the New York Press Photographers Association will hold a fundraiser for our colleagues who were victims of Hurricane Sandy. The event will take place at the Museum At Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge Street (near Canal Street), Manhattan, on Monday, December 17, at 6 p.m. Suggested donation is $20, and food and drink will be provided.

In addition, NPPA's president today encouraged all NPPA members who are available to join in helping the volunteer organization Shoot4Change, which has launched the S4C Photo Rescue Project in New York. The project is offering free service to restore photographs that were damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Sandy. 

So far, S4C volunteer photographers are working in Coney Island, Breezy Point, Staten Island, Rockaway, Sheepshead Bay, Brighton Beach, and Red Hook to assist families with their damaged photos, S4C founder Antonio Amendola in Rome told News Photographer magazine today.

NPPA members who would like to join the effort can do so by going to this link and filling out a form.