Twisted Sister frontman and Long Island native Dee Snider’s pointed leather boots clicked softly on the concrete floor of the large warehouse used to store food for delivery at the Long Island Cares Harry Chapin Food Bank in Hauppauge.
Guided by Long Island Cares executive director Paule Pachter and a group of board members, Snider toured the facility, learning firsthand about the charity he has worked with for more than a year. Snider had never seen the facility before.
“It’s really motivating to put a place and a face to your efforts,” Snider said.
Monday afternoon, Long Island Cares Inc. welcomed "Celebrity Apprentice " star Snider to a special tour of the food bank as a gesture of appreciation for Snider’s recent work with the charity in providing aid for superstorm Sandy victims.
After Sandy blew through Long Island last October, Long Island Cares began reaching out to communities across Long Island to provide food, gift cards and other household supplies to families in need.
“When we go out to these communities, we listen to what they need and we try to give it to them,” said Robin Amato, the organization’s director of development communications.
Last month, Snider and his Twisted Sister bandmates put on a special benefit concert to help raise money for victims of Sandy. The event, held at The Emporium in Patchogue, helped raise $9,000 for Long Island Cares.
Snider, who grew up in Baldwin and graduated from Baldwin High School, developed a new appreciation for local charity through the experience.
“I was touched by the fact that people could appreciate where the money was going so much more,” Snider said about the concert. “It was so much more powerful, the local neighborhood feel.”
According to Pachter, Long Island Cares now services about 30,000 families across Long Island – a 10,000-family increase since the storm.
“The people that work here become more like their family than anything else,” Long Island Cares Board of Directors vice president Jim Lennon said.
Snider worked previously with Long Island Cares as a supporter of its Endowment Fund, a fundraising effort to help benefit the overall prosperity of the charity. He also received the Harry Chapin Music Legacy Award in 2012 for his work with the March of Dimes on its “Bikers for Babies” motorcycle fundraising event.
Long Island Cares will continue to provide aid for superstorm Sandy victims for as long as necessary. The most recent endeavor is the opening of a new storefront location in Lindenhurst to provide more direct support for communities in the surrounding area.
“It takes more than food to feed the hungry,” Pachter said.