The 47 nonprofit recipients are addressing commercial waste, taxi driver rights, internet freedom, cancer care, and more.
(February 12, 2020) NEW YORK, NY – The New York Community Trust has announced new grants totaling $7 million to help nonprofits address urgent challenges—including reforms to the city’s commercial solid waste system, protecting the rights of taxicab drivers, increasing children’s access to healthy food, and fighting against gerrymandering.
[For each of the following grants, journalists can request background memos that detail the issues and how The Trust and its nonprofit partners are addressing them.]
Transforming commercial waste: As the city works to put in place a new zone system to manage the removal of more than 4 million tons of commercial waste produced annually, the Transform Don’t Trash NYC Coalition will use a $130,000 grant to work with City officials to help shape rules affecting the zones. The grant will also help raise public awareness among small businesses and community groups, draw attention to poor working conditions in the industry, and advocate for reducing pollution and improving labor provisions.
Advocating for taxicab drivers: New York’s yellow cab drivers remain underpaid and often struggle with debt related to the purchase of medallions. With an $85,000 grant from The Trust, the New York Taxi Workers Alliance will help debt-burdened drivers and continue to press the Taxi and Limousine Commission to set equitable fares and limit lease costs.
Building a better prison: The City Council recently approved a measure to close the jails on Rikers Island by 2026 and build smaller facilities in four of the five boroughs (all but Staten Island). The Bronx Neighborhood Advisory Committee proposed requirements for the new Bronx facility—including construction of affordable housing, the addition of a bus from the jail to the courthouse, and a dedicated visitation room for families with young children. An $80,000 grant to Urban Youth Alliance International will be used to promote the adoption of the committee’s recommendations.
Fighting against gerrymandering: Every ten years, state legislators establish boundaries for congressional, state, and county legislative districts. Unfortunately, many states use this as an opportunity to engage in partisan redistricting, or gerrymandering. With a $525,000 grant, LatinoJustice PRLDEF will lead an effort to engage New York City residents in the process with a newly created nonpartisan redistricting commission.
Increasing access to healthy food: The city provides more than 240 million meals annually through schools, jails, hospitals, senior centers, and early childhood programs. And more than 1,000 food pantries and soup kitchens help meet the need for food in low-income neighborhoods. With four grants totaling $610,000, The Trust is investing in projects that will increase access to nutritious food. With a $150,000 grant, the Urban Food Policy Institute at the CUNY School of Public Health and Health Policy will bring together policymakers, community leaders, and advocates to begin developing a food plan for the tri-state area. Lenox Hill Neighborhood House will use a $200,000 grant to expand a program that trains kitchen staff at community organizations to serve healthy, locally sourced meals without increasing costs. With a $160,000 grant, United Community Centers will operate three farmers markets, support community farms, and provide an urban agriculture internship program for young people in East New York, Brooklyn. Finally, West Side Campaign Against Hunger will use a $100,000 grant to coordinate food pantries to negotiate group prices on healthy, regional food, and find other ways to work more efficiently together.
Securing space for nonprofits: Many nonprofits are at risk of being displaced because of escalating costs for lease renewals. As a result, vital services, including after-school tutoring and health care, can be disrupted. With a $150,000 grant, Hester Street Collaborative will help service organizations acquire affordable space by purchasing property or negotiating leases, and it will explore long-term solutions to the problem.
Other grants include:
Arts and Culture
International Documentary Association: $300,000 for awards to help ten documentary filmmakers make, edit, and distribute films about issues facing the U.S.
Cancer Research and Care
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory: $200,000 to study a potentially game-changing new drug to treat triple negative breast cancer—a form of cancer that is especially difficult to treat and disproportionately affects black women.
Cancer Care: $700,000 for financial aid to at least 2,200 cancer patients who need help offsetting the cost of transportation, child care, pain medications, insurance premiums, and co-payments. The program will help ensure low-income people of color, immigrants, and working parents are able to afford the care they need.
God’s Love We Deliver: $100,000 to provide nutrition counseling and healthful meals to cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy or radiation treatments.
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: $100,000 to help immigrant adults and children get access to cancer treatment. It will also provide for transportation, nutrition guidance, counseling, and workshops.
New York Genome Center: $200,000 to lead a consortium of New York research institutes analyzing genomic cancer data from patients of color, who are rarely included in clinical data to develop cancer treatments. Systematically collecting data on racially and ethnically diverse patients and sharing it with the region’s academic and health centers is a step to better target cancer treatments for people of color.
New York Legal Assistance Group: $100,000 to provide legal help to cancer patients about public benefits and insurance so they can obtain care.
Institute for Community Living: $140,000 to add primary care services to mobile psychiatric teams in Brooklyn. Many of the patients who receive psychiatric care through the Institute’s mobile services have untreated physical health problems, which often result in avoidable emergency room visits and hospitalization.
NYC Health + Hospitals: $200,000 to begin an assisted walking program for adult patients at Jacobi and North Central Bronx Hospitals. To combat the prolonged immobilization that contributes to physical deterioration and increased chances of falls post-discharge, physical therapists will train patient care assistants to assess patients’ fall risk and then use techniques for safe transfer from bed and chair, ambulation assistance, and use of canes, walkers, pedometers, and other assistive devices.
Conservation and Environment
American University: $100,000 to evaluate technology for removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and oceans. The grant will provide resources to help advocates, academics, and government officials evaluate promising technologies.
Clean Air Task Force: $75,000 to oppose the rollback of federal climate change regulation. The organization will challenge the weakening of oil and gas industry regulations and efforts to weaken coal-fired plant regulations. The group will also educate members of Congress and their staff on climate policy issues.
James Foundation: $60,000 to support the eastern monarch butterfly’s migration through Central Missouri by helping create and maintain 19,000 acres of habitat.
Monarch Joint Venture: $75,000 to support the creation of monarch butterfly habitat on Midwestern farms and other private lands. The grant will help build on recent increases in the population in the region and ensure that the recovery stays on track.
National Wildlife Federation: $125,000 to create monarch butterfly habitat along roadsides leading to parks in east Texas and Missouri. These roadside corridors will help monarchs reach larger habitats that support breeding and migration.
Bell Voices: $70,000 for a student-led campaign to bring more resources to the City’s lowest-performing high schools. Students will advocate to provide their schools with full-time college and career counselors, coordinators to connect students with internships, advanced classes, and educational enrichment such as SAT prep classes.
Blue Engine: $200,000 to advance a promising program in which educators working in the same classroom collaborate to meet the needs of every student.
Facing History and Ourselves National Foundation: $75,000 to prepare school leaders to address racial inequality in their districts and schools. The grant will support an in-depth training program on the history of race in American education—with the goal of helping teachers better understand and address implicit bias.
Freedom House: $150,000 to help journalists, scholars, and activists from around the world conduct research on internet censorship and surveillance. Their findings will be published in two reports on global internet freedom.
New York Landmarks Conservancy: $130,000 for emergency repairs of historic buildings owned by nonprofit organizations. The funding will help ensure at least five nonprofits can address problems that threaten their architecturally significant buildings.
Gateway Demonstration Assistance Corporation: $100,000 to advance the redevelopment of seven homeless shelters and improve City contracting and financing of shelters.
Nazareth Housing: $75,000 to help at least 280 at-risk and formerly homeless Bronx families remain housed. The organization will also help provide nutritious food through its food pantry and provide free, on-site tax preparation services.
Public Policy Lab: $100,000 to use “human-centered design” to help homeless New Yorkers find permanent housing. The grant will help test and refine processes that could ultimately be expanded across New York’s shelter system.
Brooklyn Community Bail Fund: $200,000 to improve regulation and oversight of the commercial bond industry in immigration cases. The organization will work to reform the rules governing bond companies.
Pro Bono Net: $100,000 for a digital tool to help immigrant workers combat wage theft. The tool will calculate how much workers are owed and help them take steps toward recovering their wages.
HeartShare St. Vincent’s Services: $160,000 to provide and advocate for coaching and academic support for young people leaving foster care. The organization will connect young people over the age of 21 with career-related activities, such as internships and community service opportunities; help college students access on-campus resources; find vocational opportunities for those who are not college bound; assist with housing and finance management; and advocate for the need for long-term support.
NASW (National Association of Social Workers) Foundation: $370,000 for a scholarship program for social work students in health care. The grant extends an existing program that has helped expand the number of trained social workers who are available to help patients gain access to healthy food, stable housing, and reliable transportation.
Rutgers University Foundation: $97,000 to create a certification program that prepares social workers to better engage with Latinx populations. The program will increase the number of social workers prepared to serve the region’s substantial Latinx population—and will also provide online course offerings to help train social workers in other communities.
Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy: $150,000 to improve early childhood, child welfare, and tax policies that affect New York’s low-income children and families. The Center will work with the governor and lawmakers to set a target for reducing child poverty by 2030 and modify the state’s child tax credit to increase access.
Code Nation: $140,000 to increase the availability of computer coding classes in City schools. The program will provide students with instruction in several coding languages and offer them an opportunity to enroll in advanced courses at dozens of tech firms.
Reel Works: $200,000 to start a program to prepare high school and college students for careers in the film industry. The program will provide workforce readiness and technical training, paid internships, and job coaching and placement.
LiveOn NY: $150,000 to prepare senior centers to meet the needs of the City’s older adult population by developing training programs and workshops, delivering ongoing technical assistance, and creating an online resource for senior centers.
Release Aging People in Prison Campaign: $100,000 to advocate for the release of elderly prisoners by organizing formerly incarcerated individuals, their families, and affected communities for passage of a bill that makes all prisoners over 55 eligible for parole consideration if they have served at least 15 years.
People with Disabilities
Bridges from School to Work: $100,000 to expand an employment program for young adults with disabilities transitioning out of high school. The program will help young adults with disabilities master the technical and interpersonal skills needed to successfully apply for and keep good jobs.
Hunter College of CUNY: $150,000 to advocate for legal recognition of a practice called supported decision-making, which helps adults with intellectual disabilities make important life decisions with appropriate support rather than through guardianship.
INCLUDEnyc: $125,000 to expand services for Spanish-speaking families of children with disabilities. The program will expand outreach efforts to help families of teenagers and young adults with disabilities, who are less likely to have access to services, yet need assistance.
Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC): $130,000 to develop and test an intensive work skills training program for young adults with autism.
Candid: $60,000 to upgrade the collection and analysis of performance metrics for community foundations to help these vital organizations benchmark their work, identify areas of improvement, and communicate their impact.
Change Capital Fund: $280,000 to help innovative community development groups reduce poverty and track their results.
SeaChange Capital Partners: 150,000 to strengthen nonprofits through mergers and other formal alliances.
About The New York Community Trust
The New York Community Trust connects past, present, and future generous New Yorkers with vital nonprofits working to make a healthy, equitable, and thriving community for all. We are a public grantmaking foundation dedicated to improving the lives of residents of New York City, Westchester, and Long Island. For more information, visit us at nycommunitytrust.org.