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From left to right: Annabel Wu, her father Gongxi, baby sister Alice, and mother Ru.
NYCHA Lends a Helping Hand to Family Who Lost Home in Hurricane

A helping hand from NYCHA, along with a random act of kindness, made a big difference for a family that lost their home and belongings as a result of Hurricane Sandy. With smiles on their faces, the Wu family were led on a tour of their new home at Carver Houses in Manhattan for the first time. Thanks to an anonymous $5,000 donation, the light-filled three-bedroom apartment came complete with furniture and other essential household items selected by NYCHA’s Family Services Department staff.

“We like this apartment and are very happy,” Gongxi Wu said. “All we can say is thank you to everyone at NYCHA for your help.”

Four-year-old Annabel gleefully followed her parents, Mr. Wu and Ru Lin, and baby sister Alice through each room, trying out the new sofa and eagerly examining the Disney toys and art supplies that were also part of the anonymous donation. She gave her seal of approval on her older sister Angela’s bedroom after noting the perfect placement of the stuffed animals on the bed.

After their Staten Island home was devastated by Hurricane Sandy, the Wu family was referred to the Authority in April 2013 as part of the City’s Hurricane Sandy re-housing efforts. NYCHA wanted to locate an apartment close to the hospital where Annabel is being transferred for her leukemia treatments, and Carver Houses definitely fit the bill at only a few blocks away.

“We like the neighborhood and being close to Central Park, which will be very good for Annabel – she will get stronger by taking walks and getting exercise there,” Mr. Wu said. “And the subway is close; it’s a good commute to my job at a hotel on Central Park South.”

In addition to the living room, bedroom, and kitchen furniture sets, the donation enabled NYCHA’s Family Services Department to stock the Wu’s apartment with kitchen appliances and cookware, a high chair and crib, sheets, towels, and decorative items. “Thank you, everybody, for helping,” Annabel exclaimed after posing for photographs with her family. “My room is very pretty!”

By Michael Corwin
July 3, 2013