Town of Greenburgh Supervisor Paul Feiner is what I would lovingly characterize as a mensch. The man drives a car that advertises his accessibility as a public servant, answers most – if not all – emails and messages from constituents promptly and directly (sorry to stake you to that, Paul) and, more importantly, is solution-oriented on behalf of every individual within his jurisdiction.
Look no further than his leadership in the years-long Snow Angels initiative, which dispatches citizen volunteers to help shovel and dig out cars and driveways of elderly, disabled or otherwise bereft neighbors in need.
I’ve participated in the program the past few winters when able, and been grateful for the chance to help. So, when Paul announced through local media that he was organizing a parallel program called Covid Angels, designed to assist seniors throughout the Town of Greenburgh in making appoints over the phone and online vaccine appointments, it was an easy call to assist.
The subsequent several weeks have been a case study in how community organizing functions at the grass roots to augment government aide and relief to our most vulnerable – if not fill the void left visible by its limitations. A remarkable cohort of selfless area residents has rallied around this cause, creating an infrastructure for contacting seniors in need, providing assistance when requested and logging progress in detailed databases. (And the press has been impressed, with everyone from NBC’s Lester Holt to the New York Times noting our efforts.)
We have been relentless, particularly when adapting to constant changes in not just the availability of appointments at state-run and pharmacy sites, but New York’s seemingly never-ending tweaks to eligibility protocol and screening processes.
Thanks to the Covid Angels’ collective will – and the determination of superstar team leaders and top-down advisors such as Supervisor Feiner, Carol Allen, Alise Curran, Laken Masterson, Anne Hoehn, Sara Kober, Cathy Brown and many more (apologies to all I have omitted), hundreds of appointments have been made on behalf of folks who’d otherwise be left behind in the red tape of this complicated vaccine rollout.
And we are counting on the continued participation of the community at large. If you are interested in volunteering, you can call the Town Supervisor’s office at 914-989-1540, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or complete the form at this address: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfJ1ug4xC2q9kcLaRaHMjQaAWtcN6gD5qp7OEWH9fDNPttJ3g/viewform?gxids=7628.
Let’s end this nightmare together.
Kenny Herzog is a writer, editor and longtime 10591 resident who currently lives in Sleepy Hollow with his wife and two sons, neither of whom is necessarily an angel.