From losing more than 24,000 New Yorkers to COVID-19 to the shuttering of beloved local institutions to continued violence against Black communities, we have collectively faced many tough days this year.
Yet, with the holiday season upon us, we still have a lot to be thankful for, particularly the actions and generosity of everyday people who have stepped up for their neighbors.
From the weekly food distribution events hosted by our local elected officials and nonprofits, to the donations given by private-sector partners, our communities have stepped up to the challenge.
Since September, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams has honored local “COVID Heroes” for feeding their neighbors, distributing personal protective equipment (PPE) and providing virtual programming for seniors and youth.
Though we are not out of the woods yet, fellow elected officials should also recognize the work that mutual aid groups, food pantries and many restaurants have done, and encourage them to continue their good work.
With food insecurity on the rise and unemployment still at an alarmingly-high rate, an increasing number of New Yorkers, especially undocumented immigrants, are in need of assistance now more than ever.
While the city and state are hoping that the Biden administration will work with Congress to pass a new stimulus package that provides relief, we can take action now and contribute to organizations working on the ground.
In April and May, during the height of the first wave of coronavirus, the sounds of cheers, applause and the banging of pots and pans at 7 p.m. filled the streets in tribute to the brave frontline workers keeping our city alive.
As we enter the second wave, we should not only keep that tradition alive, but also start a new tradition of giving back to community groups that rose to the moment when we needed them most.
We salute every organization, company and person who has contributed during the pandemic, and hope that many more will join the cause to become COVID heroes.