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  • Writer's pictureEpiscopal Charities

Weekly Resource Round-Up: April 2, 2024

This Week's Resources



If you have resources to share with our network, please contact Tobi Mojeed-Balogun our Associate Director of Programs Support.


2024 Bulk Buy Application


We are thrilled to announce that we will begin accepting proposals for our 2024 Bulk Buy Program! Bulk Buy allows us to aggregate food purchasing across the Diocese and means free high-quality food for EC programs. This is a rolling application and the first round of granting will end April 15th. You can find our brief application form HERE! Please contact me (Tobi) with any questions or concerns.


City Council calls for reversals of cuts to early childhood programs, more money for school food (Chalkbeat)


"New York City Council members unveiled their response to Mayor Eric Adams’ budget proposal on Monday, calling on the city to reverse recent budget cuts and provide millions of dollars in additional funding for school food, early childhood education, and other programs.

Adams’ preliminary city budget cut about $100 million in funding from the city’s schools in January. Those cuts — though less severe than anticipated — came on top of roughly $600 million in cuts announced in November." Read more here.


Prepaid Debit Cards for Families of Migrants in NYC, Explained (Documented)


"New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced a pilot program to provide pre-paid debit cards to 500  asylum seeker families with children. The debit cards, administered by the company Mobility Capital Finance (MoCaFi), will be solely used for migrants to buy food and baby supplies at bodegas, grocery stores and supermarkets. 

The program is one of the efforts introduced by the Adams’ administration to reduce spending on food provided in shelters, while improving the access to cooked, nutritious and culturally appropriate food — which has been a point of contention between the administration and immigrant advocates." Read more here.


Judge: Lawsuit over pandemic-era services to NYC students with disabilities can proceed (Gothamist)


"A class-action lawsuit filed by students with disabilities and their parents claiming the city Department of Education failed to provide them with services during the pandemic will proceed, a federal judge ruled Thursday.

The lawsuit was filed in 2020 during the early days of the pandemic, demanding that the education department provide services like remote learning devices. The case was dismissed in 2022, but an appeals court later overturned that ruling.

Lawyers for Advocates for Children New York, the group that brought the lawsuit, said they will now begin discovery in the case." Read more here.


Cots, food scarcity and constant confusion: the toll of New York’s migrant shelter evictions (The Guardian)


"...“It’s a deadline for us as a city to effectively help you,” said Long, adding that before an eviction happens, every family gets to brainstorm their next steps with case managers. According to Long, the fact that less than half of the evicted families return to the Asylum Seeker Arrival Center for new shelter placement is a testament to the system’s efficiency.


But the Guardian spoke to several non-profits and human rights organizations that say the reality is completely different. From interviews with the Legal Aid Society, the New York Immigration Coalition, Black Alliance for Just Immigration, Project Rousseau, and Advocates for Children of New York, what emerged was a picture of a systematic eviction practice that many are calling unfair, unnecessary and a tool to deter people from coming to New York. Still, these organizations are stopping short of calling the practice a violation of the right to shelter. “It’s not that these people are losing that right [to shelter],” explained Liza Schwartzwald, the director of economic justice at the New York Immigration Coalition. “It’s that they’re just making it more difficult to access that right.” Read more here.


Op-ed | It’s about time for congestion pricing, and a big boost in MTA service (amNY)


Please note that this Op-Ed is by Janno Lieber, the MTA Chair and CEO


"After five years of intensive study, passionate debate, and far-reaching public outreach, the MTA Board voted overwhelmingly last week to approve the proposed tolling structure for congestion pricing. It’s about time.

Now we can look forward to starting tolling sometime (hopefully) in mid-June. The MTA is ready for Day One – running more service, more efficiently than ever before to support New Yorkers taking transit.

While peer agencies nationwide have been forced to make painful cuts to service, we were able to work with Governor Hochul and the State Legislature to substantially increase subway service as part of last year’s budget..." Read more here.


NYC has to now measure the true cost of living (NY Daily New via FPWA)


"Everyone knows the lyrics of the classic Frank Sinatra song about New York City: “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere.”

But we’re seeing that long-time truism turned on its head, with hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers now deciding to take their chances on making it anywhere but here after building a life in our beloved city has proved impossible due to our affordability crisis.

We all may love New York, but the exodus of residents we’ve experienced over the past few years — 78,000 in 2023, on top of 125,000 in 2022 — is proof that even love can’t overcome skyrocketing costs of child care, housing, food, and other essential needs." Read more here.


"Seize the Day" : A benefit concert for the Washington Heights Choir School


Here's a note from our friends at WHCS:


Dear Friends,

The Washington Heights Choir School (WHCS) is thrilled to invite you to join us on Friday, May 3rd for a joyful evening of music and fellowship celebrating over 12 years of providing our free after-school choir program to the neighborhood.The evening will feature performances by our WHCS choristers, special collaborations with the Washington Heights Community Choir and the Dance Project of Washington Heights, and an exciting guest appearance by flamenco artist Paloma de Vega, followed by a festive reception. 

We hope you’ll consider supporting this program by purchasing tickets, becoming a WHCS sponsor, placing a journal ad, or perhaps making a donation of goods or services to our raffle.  We are grateful for your support and hope to see you there!



Stop & Shop School Food Pantry Program


Thank you to Susan Fowler for this tip:


"More than 9 million children in the United States are food insecure, according to the USDA. Stop & Shop works directly with schools to establish and support food pantries to ensure that kids don't have to go to school hungry—and to help them perform their best. Stop & Shop Food Pantries nourish students ranging from pre-K through college.


How it works


  • Stop & Shop identifies schools in need within its communities and works to support a schools' existing food pantry program—or to help them establish one.

  • Submit an application for school pantry needs here

  • If you need assistance, please contact SSSchoolFoodPantry@StopandShop.com"



New York Common Pantry Personal Care and Hygiene Wishlist


Here's a message from our friends at NY Common Pantry:


"Dear Friends of NY Common Pantry,


As you may have read, a building in the Bronx collapsed [December 11th]. NYCP was asked by the Bronx Borough President's office to provide hygiene kits for the residents that were displaced by this event.  While we could answer the need, it meant that all our supplies have been depleted and we need these kits for our participants who come daily. While we should manage through the holiday - we will need these in the new year.The kits consist of a mix of  toothpaste, shampoo, shaving kits, toothbrush, soap and chapstick etc. They can be made into kits or items can be collected and donated to NYCP where kits can be made.  It might be a perfect January event after the holidays if your schools could help us out with a much needed collection. If your students will travel or parents travel for work, those hotel size toiletries are perfectly fine.This is the link on Amazon to make it even easier to see what is needed and how easy it is to create the kits at home or at work - https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/1DM1TOXUVSRL7?ref_=wl_share."



NYS COVID and MonkeyPox Updates (Plus Info about the Flu, RSV, and Norovirus)


A lot of the news around mandates, vaccines and restrictions have been a little confusing so I will list some resources below that might help.

  • Interview with NYC Health Commissioner on COVID bump. Link here.

  • NYS Department of Health COVID website - It's a one stop shop with an info summary at the top. Link here.

  • NYC Department of Health Monkeypox Webpage - lots of information and resources about the virus with pictures of the rash included. Find the link here.

    • With Mpox at Risk of Flaring, Health Officials Advise, ‘Get Vaccinated’ - New York Times - Read here

  • COVID vs Flu vs RSV info - I found a good article from the Washington post that gives information about three viruses that have been spiking this winter. Read the article here.

  • The Time Magazine article on the new variant (XBB.1.5) - Link Here

  • US News and World Report article on newest variant (BA.2.86) - Link Here

  • COVID is back in NY. What to know about schools, nursing homes and more (lohud.) - link here

  • How to Keep Tabs on COVID Through Wastewater Testing in NYC (The City) - link here


Scams pretending to be immigration agencies: How to protect yourself (Documented)


"Fraudulent emails and messages have circulated social media, masquerading as communications from federal immigration agencies, that falsely promise migrants legal representation for obtaining a Green Card in exchange for a small fee. Scammers specifically target Spanish-speaking, migrant New Yorkers who are in the process of adjusting their immigration status.

Rosa Santana, the Bond Director at Envision Fund, contacted Documented regarding scam messages circulating on Facebook and WhatsApp. The emails also falsely claim that failure to respond to the correspondence could result in a “negative report in the migration system,” making individuals “prone to deportation.”

Scam messages that target migrants are nothing new, as Documented reported in the past during the Excluded Workers Fund. However, these new scams exploit the necessity of migrants as they seek asylum in the United States. Here are some of the common scams targeting migrants with immigration cases and how to avoid them." Read the rest of the guide here.


Safe Church Training


Safe Church is handled by the Diocesan Human Resources Department which can be reached at safechurchinfo@dioceseny.org. You can also call 917 414 0156.



Documented's Mental Health Resources for Immigrants in New York


"A list of organizations that provide free or low-cost mental health care services to immigrants in New York

It can be overwhelming to find mental health care services, so Documented compiled a list of organizations and groups that offer low cost options, accept Medicaid, or render free services to individuals who are seeking counseling.

Most of these locations provide services in English and Spanish. We recommend reaching out to the location for more information, as some of the prices for services given are based on the level of income. For emergencies always call 911.


You can also contact NYC Well for free, confidential crisis counseling, mental health, and substance misuse support, information, and referral. You can reach the toll-free helpline 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by phone, text and online chat. Mental health professionals there can link you to the services you need. Phone: 888-692-9355 | (Espanol): 888-692-9355"



Documented's Immigrant Resources and Job/Housing Discrimination Guides


"Documented has gathered all of the resources we can find to help immigrant New Yorkers. New links will be added and the following pages will be constantly updated. If you would like us to add information to this list or have questions, please reach out to us at info@documentedny.com."



"The New York City Human Rights Law is one of the most comprehensive anti-discrimination laws in the country, prohibiting discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations based on race, color, religion/creed, age, national origin, immigration or citizenship status, gender (including sexual harassment), gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, military service, marital status and partnership status. As a newsroom that serves immigrant communities, Documented has written a comprehensive guide for immigrants."




Hudson Link Employer Toolkit


Our friends at Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison put together an employer toolkit for hiring formerly incarcerated people. Thank you to Sean Pica, Eldredge Blalock, Elisabeth Santiago, and the rest of the team at Hudson Link for this important resource. The toolkit can be found here. If you have any questions about hiring formerly incarcerated people, please contact Elisabeth Santiago from Hudson Link's Alumni Services at esantiago@hudsonlink.org.




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That's all for this week -- thanks for all you do!


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