Anniversaries of disasters, like Hurricane Sandy, are important, because they help gauge what’s been learned and what progress has been made. They allow people an opportunity to grieve. But just as often, anniversary coverage overlooks the most important detail that inevitably comes up in a humanitarian situation—peoples’ resilience.
When Hurricane Sandy hit, I had been living in Brooklyn’s Red Hook neighbourhood for two months. Long enough to know where to drink a beer, and where to go for a pick-up game of soccer on the weekend. Not long enough to have any kind of relationship with my new community, which since 1939 has been home to the Red Hook Houses — with more than 6,500 residents, Brooklyn’s largest public housing development.