Thursday, July 24, 2014

Save the Date: September 4 Fashion Show Fundraiser

Health Empowered Beauty

Join us on September 4, 2014 for our annual Health Empowered Beauty Fashion Show Fundraiser to benefit Susan's Place. A fashion show unlike any other, this inspiring event will feature Susan's Place homeless clients as models.

Tickets start at $20! Click here to purchase tickets and get more information.

Health Empowered Beauty Fashion Show
Thursday September 4, 2014 at 6:30 PM
@Subud Chelsea Center 
230 West 29th Street (Map
Subway: 1 to 28th Street or B,D,F,M,N,Q,R 
to 34th Street Herald Square 


Will you be in the front row
on the runway this year?




Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Municipal ID Signed into Law

On July 10, 2014, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed the Municipal ID Law, creating a creates a municipal identification card that will be accepted by city agencies and give New Yorkers greater access to cultural, educational and commercial services. Care for the Homeless strongly advocated for the Municipal ID bill since its introduction.
One of our client leaders, Anthony Wiliams, was one of 12 advocates who testified at the Mayoral Public Hearing the day before the law was signed and the only homeless advocate who spoke. Read his testimony below. Earlier this spring, Care for the Homeless testified at a New York City Council Hearing on the bill. Read more after the jump.

Care for the Homeless Client Testimony Supporting Municipal ID Legislation
By Anthony Williams, Client Leader
Presented to New York City Mayoral Public Hearing, July 9, 2014

My name is Anthony Williams. I’m a client leader with Care for the Homeless in New York City, an organization that has advocated for the municipal ID legislation - we’re very appreciative to the Mayor and Council for this law.

Anthony Williams
On May 28th of this year I was mugged on a subway platform – for the past 5 weeks I’ve been living without government accepted ID. As a person who has lived through chronic homelessness, this isn’t the first time I’ve been in need of ID or struggled to get one. When I thank you for this legislation I’m speaking first-hand about something I’ve lived through.

New York is the greatest city in the world, but it’s difficult to live here without government approved identification. Up until now getting proper ID hasn’t been easy or convenient. Having acceptable ID gives a person confidence and makes it much easier to access city and other resources and services, it makes it easier and more pleasant to interact with police and law enforcement and it makes it possible to use cultural and business services. We have world class services and opportunities in New York, but being without ID denies you the full opportunity to enjoy them.

If this municipal ID bill did no more than assist our undocumented non-citizen neighbors, why wouldn’t we support it? But it actually does far more. It opens up access and opportunities for New Yorkers like me, who though life-long citizens have difficulties due to losing ID and other documents through theft, natural disaster or for whatever reason. It will afford me the opportunity to say that I count. That is what this about, counting as a New Yorker.

That makes this law an opportunity I welcome, I support and I truly thank you for. 

Care for the Homeless Testimony Supporting Municipal ID Legislation
By Jeff Foreman, Care for the Homeless Policy Director
Presented to New York City Council Committee on Immigration, 
April 30, 2014
 
Chairman Menchaca and Members of the New York City Council Immigration Committee, thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today in support of Intro 253, the proposed New York City Identity Card legislation. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Cuomo Says About AIDS, New York Can Be “First State in the Nation Committed to Ending this Epidemic”

Jeff Foreman, Director of Policy

Governor Andrew Cuomo, marching in the New York City Pride Day event on Saturday, committed New York to “bending the curve”on HIV/AIDS policies in order to “end the AIDS epidemic” and assure that those living with HIV/AIDS remain healthy He announced a three point program to “decrease new HIV infections to the point where the number of people living with HIV in New York is reduced for the first time.”

The Governor’s plan, much of which has been advocated by Care for the Homeless, includes:
1.       Identifying persons with HIV who remain undiagnosed and linking them to health care (as CFH does through rapid HIV testing, diagnosis and treatment, every day);
2.       Linking and retaining persons diagnosed with HIV to health care and getting them on anti-HIV virus suppression so they remain healthy and prevent further transmission (CFH provides primary care to people living with HIV/AIDS and health education concerning HIV every day); and,
3.       Providing access to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for high-risk persons to keep them HIV negative.

“New York State has reached an important milestone in controlling the AIDS epidemic,” Governor Cuomo said, “and through this comprehensive strategy we are decreasing new HIV infections to the point where by 2020 the number of persons living with HIV in New York State will be reduced for the first time.”

Earlier this year, CFH and a strong statewide advocacy community won the fight to put a 30% rent cap on the portion of HIV patient’s income that can be charged for those housed in government housing programs like the HIV/AIDS Services Administration (HASA) housing system in New York City. That major victory assures housing stability for the first time to thousands of people living with HIV in New York. “That was a huge achievement,” according to CFH Executive Director Bobby Watts, “because housing really is healthcare, and it’s a real threat to anyone living with HIV to be unstably housed.”

The first report of AIDS occurred 33 years ago on July 3, 1981, with some of the earliest cases occurring in New York City. For most of those years, and continuing today, CFH has been on the forefront of fighting, diagnosing and treating HIV/AIDS among our city’s unstably housed.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Mobile Health Clinic Ready to Roll

The map at Care for the Homeless is about to change.

Through a partnership with The Brooklyn Hospital Center, Care for the Homeless is giving new life to a Mobile Health Clinic, set to launch later this summer.  This program addresses two distinct and time-sensitive problems in NYC: meeting the health needs of homeless people and the need for greater disaster preparedness.

Thanks to a generous award from Direct Relief, the required renovations on the Care for the Homeless Mobile Health Clinic were completed ahead of schedule.

 
The Mobile Health Clinic is a cost-effective approach to disaster preparedness—it’s not waiting in storage when catastrophe strikes.  And, according to Executive Director Bobby Watts: “Who better to assist in a disaster than Care for the Homeless? Our everyday work, in many ways, resembles disaster treatment. We frequently serve patients who arrive in personal crisis, without identification or medical records. We’re grateful to Direct Relief for funding this project. It makes perfect sense that our teams should join first responders.”

In an emergency—large or small-scale disaster—the Care for the Homeless Mobile Health Clinic is not limited to serving homeless people.

The renovation of the interior took several weeks, while an overhaul of the generator and a mechanical upgrade took place. We added new tires, upgraded medical equipment and a new safety ladder. Inspected by the Federal Safety Motor Administration and the NYS Dept. of Motor Vehicles and Dept. of Health, the Mobile Health Clinic is set to launch later this summer.



“As soon as our application for licensure and certification is approved by the NYS Dept. of Health,” says Assistant Executive Director Debbian Fletcher-Blake, “we’re ready to roll.”

“The application is being expedited, as the State knows the need that Care for the Homeless is working to address,” Fletcher-Blake continues. “The NYS DOH is also placing our program onto the list of reliable providers for large-scale and community-scale disasters.”

The Mobile Health Clinic made its red carpet debut at our April 24th Health, Care and Hope Gala:





Initially, the Mobile Health Clinic will travel to two sites with high need and poor health outcomes in the South Bronx. Over 1,000 men, women and children sleep in homeless shelters in these targeted neighborhoods every night.



We thank Direct Relief, our generous Gala Sponsors and all the donors who support our mission for helping us launch this critical new program. Care for the Homeless plans to hold an open house in September, several weeks after the program has launched. Stay tuned for more details.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Care for the Homeless Clients Celebrate Successes in Overcoming Homelessness

And Second Opportunities for Those Still in Need

Each year on the day of the winter solstice in December, the “longest night of the year”, Care for the Homeless and hundreds of other groups across America observe Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day to remember those who have died during the year without housing and to recognize that better policies can end modern day homelessness as we know it.

This past Saturday, on the occasion of the summer solstice, the longest day of the year, the client leaders at Care for the Homeless inaugurated a new event: a Summer Solstice Success Celebration. It’s an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the success people have had in overcoming obstacles to beat homelessness by finding and maintaining permanent, stable housing.  It also recognizes that with better policies every New Yorker who is unstably housed or on the verge of homelessness could have an opportunity for the same kind of “second chance” the honorees at the Celebration were able to take advantage of.

“Homelessness is a crisis,” Care for the Homeless Executive Director Bobby Watts told the assembled

crowd at Broadway Presbyterian Church on Saturday. “But with the right policies and programs we can end homelessness as we know it. As we advocate for those better policies it’s important to recognize there are people who overcome the evil of homelessness, and to celebrate their success. With each success, the individual – and society – is healthier and stronger.”

New York City Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Gilbert Taylor spoke at the event and handed out awards to the event’s honorees. The program also featured lunch, live music and entertainment and “stories of success” from several Care for the Homeless clients now living in permanent housing.

Friday, June 20, 2014

NYU Club Knits and Crochets 185 Baby Blankets for families served by Care for the Homeless

Today, members of the NYU Naughty Knitters club, started by Jennie Tichenor in 2010, presented Care for the Homeless with a record-setting donation:

185 hand-knit and crocheted baby blankets

Photo courtesy of Dean G. Mudgett, NYU

Volunteering thousands of hours of time and creativity, the club has adopted Care for the Homeless, providing over 600 blankets since the annual program began. These blankets will be distributed at Care for the Homeless sites throughout NYC - in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens - to hundreds families in need.

We thank the generous and talented members of the 

NYU Naughty Knitters for this amazing donation!










Wednesday, June 18, 2014

New York City: People Want to Wake Up in a City That Doesn’t Sleep

Jeff Foreman, Director of Policy

New York City’s population is growing according to U.S. Census data released in May. Gotham recorded the largest census increase of any major American city, growing by 61,440 in 2013 census estimates, reaching a new high of over 8.4 million. America’s second most populous city is Los Angeles at 3.8 million, followed by Chicago with 2.7 million.    

Unfortunately, New Yorkers also have the highest homeless population in America (the 2013 HUD estimate puts daily homelessness in New York City at 64,060, 11% of the total U.S. homeless census) and probably the highest unstably housed student population in America (using the definition of “lacking a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence”) at 66,931 in the most recent statistics available.  

Read more in this month's Policy Matters newsletter.