If you’re in need of support, text “I need support” to (929) 251 – 5044 or e-mail ridgewoodmutualaidnetwork @ gmail.com
Si necesita apoyo, mande un mensaje de texto con “necesito apoyo” al (929) 251-5044 o un correo electronico a ridgewoodmutualaidnetwork @ gmail.om
We’re in a public health crisis and neighbors in Ridgewood, Queens and surrounding neighborhoods are coming together
The Ridgewood Mutual Aid Network (RMAN) was formed when organizers with the Ridgewood Tenants Union (RTU) put out a call for volunteers in the neighborhood to come together and support other neighbors in need during the COVID 19 pandemic. The Ridgewood Tenants Union is an anti-gentrification, independent and tenant-led housing rights group run by volunteers that was formed in 2014 to build tenant power and fight displacement in a neighborhood long controlled by homeowners and the politicians that advocate solely for them.
We put out that call on March 16. The weekend prior, four organizers with RTU met right before the city started to shut down to curb the spread of COVID 19. We already knew that the local government would not provide our community with the resources it would need to ride out what we were about to experience. At monthly RTU tenant assemblies we start meetings by going over four main tenets:
- We want to hear about the issues you are going through as tenants
- We want to come up with a plan together to tackle those issues
- We want this to be a space were we are supported by one another
- We believe that in joining forces as tenants and with our allies we can create a neighborhood that is no longer controlled by the interest of developers and corporate landlords that only want to make a profit
Mutual aid has always been at the very foundation of our work and since March 16 the Ridgewood Mutual Aid Network has grown by over 300 members that have agreed to practice safety protocols while engaging in mutual aid work. Our original fundraising goal of $500 has been surpassed multiple times and thanks to countless supporters that believe in our work, we now have raised close to $14,000. In our first month, we have supported 60 families and individuals with access to food by providing small cash grants or contactless grocery drop offs. This support has helped feed 150 individuals with healthy food and staples that will last them and their families for several weeks. Currently, we are supporting 20 immigrant families with bi-weekly access to groceries.
Donate what you can to support our efforts
We’ve started an online crowdfunding campaign: https://chuffed.org/project/ridgewoodmutualaidnetwork
We’re raising funds to prepare for the coming weeks and months. The novel coronavirus has created a public health crisis that has left many living in uncertainty and it is scary and many of our neighbors will be left unable to meet their needs as days pass. The funds raised from this campaign will be put to good use by supporting those neighbors that are in need of resources and also to help with the purchase of safety materials that will help make our mutual aid possible.
Be a part of the Ridgewood Mutual Aid Network
Please fill out our volunteer form to join us. Once you have agreed to adhere to safety protocols and fill out the form, you will receive a link to our welcome guide that provides informatio on how to get invovled. The form can be found here:
We’re developing our infrastructure and we anticipate we’ll be living in times of uncertainty for weeks if not months to come. You can help by helping to coordinate or helping to fulfill requests. Send an e-mail to email@example.com if you have any questions.
Members must adhere to safety protocols while practicing mutual aid
Please read this page for our safety guidelines: Safety Practices for Mutual Aid
Help us spread the word
How we communicate
The main ways we communicate are through Slack and Google Groups. You will be added after filling out our volunteer form.
Information for Tenants
For the most up to date information on the eviction moraturium and other news related to your housing rights, please check out the Right to Counsel Coalition page.
What is the Ridgewood Tenants Union (RTU) and mutual aid and what do these two things have to do with one another? The Ridgewood Tenants Union is an all volunteer run and tenant-led anti-gentrification group that was formed in April 2014. We don’t have an office, we don’t receive any funding, and we don’t have non-profit status. Mutual aid is about our own resiliency and about putting the focus on the power of the collective as a whole and how powerful we can be together. It is not charity. When we build up our collective power we are better positioned to fight back against developers pushing us out of our own neighborhood and we can work together on placing people over profit and make sure everyone has what they need.