National Grid employees clean up Brooklyn parks, community gardens for Day of Service

people pose on field at national grid day of service
National Grid employees took part in a beach cleanup at Gerritsen Beach on Sept. 16 as part of their Day of Service.
Photo courtesy National Grid

Energy company National Grid worked to give back to the communities it serves with a Day of Service on Sept. 16.

“Partnerships for Parks is thrilled to support National Grid on their company’s first anniversary of Project C Day of Service that brought 124 volunteers out to help in Canarsie and Marine Park in Brooklyn and Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens,” said Jennifer Cucchiarella, corporate engagement manager at the Partnership for Parks. “Volunteers removed nearly 170 bags of litter and natural debris and painted 30+ benches,  15+ lamp posts, and an entire skate park. We are grateful for the National Grid’s partnership and the many accomplishments completed today by our volunteers.”

people pose at beach cleanup
The Day of Service was part of National Grid’s Community Commitment, in which the company pledged to build a better future for its customers. Photo courtesy National Grid

More than 2,000 employees of the company, which provides gas for nearly 2 million people in Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island, volunteered at events throughout New York State. As part of its Project C Community Commitment, National Grid pledged to build a better future for New Yorkers by investing in clean and sustainable energy, caring for its neighborhoods, addressing challenges faced by its customers — including environmental justice and social equity issues – and collaborating with “customers, partners, stakeholders and so many others to deliver the clean, fair, resilient and affordable energy future.”

National Grid, one of the largest utility providers in Brooklyn and Queens, partnered with the City Parks Foundation to hold cleanup events at Marine Park and Gerritsen Beach, Canarsie Park, and Flushing Meadows Park in Queens. 

“From training clean energy workers to aiding local businesses, the past year has been filled with love and support for our New York communities,” said Rudy Wynter, National Grid’s New York president. “Thanks to the hard work of our employee volunteers, partners, and other stakeholders, we have already accomplished so much. There is more work to be done, and we are more motivated than ever to continue to deliver for our customers and our communities.”

person painting skate ramp
Employee volunteers also painted skate ramps, benches, and other items at parks throughout Brooklyn and Queens. Photo courtesy National Grid

Employees helped to tidy and maintain flower beds, plant new trees, paint a skate park, and more — including taking part in a Parks Department-sponsored “It’s My Park” event in Marine Park. At the nearby Plumb Beach Gateway National Recreation Area, volunteers picked up trash and cleaned up the beach, and did some maintenance and beautification work at the Sunkissed Garden in Brownsville.

“The Day of Service is a microcosm of our year-round efforts,” Wynter said. “We’re inspired by the partners who we work with, by their resilience and their resourcefulness. Project C is about being present, engaged, and driving positive impact in the communities and neighborhoods where our customers live, work and play. It’s reflected on days like today and in the hundreds of other projects our employees commit to throughout the year.”

Not all the work was physical — some volunteers helped out with an after-school reading program at the Greenpoint YMCA or helped to serve got meals to members of the Bay Ridge Center for Older Adults. At the Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Center in Crown Heights, National Grid employees helped with a tech session for seniors — helping some older Brooklynites navigate the internet, their smart phones, and social media.

national grid day of service coalition against hunger
Some National Grid volunteers also worked to serve meals with the Coalition Against Hunger, taught seniors how to navigate the internet and technology, and more.Photo courtesy National Grid

“I love our parks. Therefore, I want to offer a big thanks to National Grid and their team of dedicated employees for their volunteer efforts to help beautify Gerritsen Park,” said Brooklyn councilmember Mercedes Narcisse in a statement. “I am a staunch advocate of clean streets and parks, and will do whatever appropriate to keep our public areas as clean as possible, and look forward to a continued partnership in these efforts with National Grid.”