ROCKLAND COUNTY, N.Y. -- As a humanitarian crisis unfolds in Haiti, where at least 1,000 people were killed from Hurricane Matthew, and a cholera outbreak is taking hold, Rockland County Executive Ed Day announced Thursday that unused supplies from the Summit Park nursing home will be donated to local groups assisting with the Haitian relief efforts.
"We want these supplies to go to good use," he said. "There are strong ties between Rockland County and Haiti and there is no better use than sending these items to Haiti, which is in dire need following Hurricane Matthew."
Day met Thursday with Renold Julien and Sandra Oates, local leaders of the Haitian relief efforts, in the laundry room of the former Summit Park nursing home. They looked through stacks of items once used by the now-closed nursing home that the county would like to donate to the relief effort.
The items include both used and new sheets for hospital beds, towels, patient gowns, baby powder, shaving cream, oral swabs, toothbrushes among other supplies.
"There is such great need in Haiti," said Renold Julien, executive director of Konbit Neg Lakay, a Haitian-American organization in Spring Valley.
Julien and Oates, who is with the HACSO Community Center in Spring Valley, are leading the Rockland County Haiti Relief Campaign. The campaign is raising funds to ship donated supplies to Haiti.
Myrnia Bass-Hargrove, Rockland County's director of Community Relations, is assisting the organization. She is helping to facilitate donation of the county supplies.
Before the items can be donated, the Rockland County Legislature has to declare the supplies surplus. The County Executive's Office is preparing a resolution for the legislature to approve the donation.
Other items once used by the Summit Park nursing home are being auctioned. The county was forced to close the money-losing nursing home a year ago when a prospective buyer pulled out of the deal at the last minute.