Victoria Acland

January’s Notes from NMIC

 

 

Hi there,

According to the 2018 NYC Volunteers Count report an estimated 600,000 people volunteered their time to uplift a fellow New Yorker. Of those, 65% chose to directly impact their neighborhoods by volunteering for a local community-based organization.

Every day, we witness the power of volunteers who have identified community-wide concerns and are taking actions. These actions make our work possible and helps us service over 14,000 clients annually.

Read below for an update on the milestones you’ve helped us accomplish, a celebration of an unlikely partnership, and why volunteering your time can lead to new relationships, understanding of barriers, and more importantly – can support someone’s empowerment. On this Martin Luther King Jr.’s day, we reflect on the power of community action.

 

Honoring MLK Day of Service

In 1983, legislation was signed to honor the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and designate a national day of service. The day’s slogan is “Make it a day on, not a day off.” During these challenging times, the work must continue. 

Soon, it will be a year since the pandemic began impacting our lives. As we reflect on a year filled with challenges and grief, we are reminded of the positive effect that strong community-wide efforts have. In 2020, you helped NMIC fight food insecurity by giving almost 700 hours of service. Of those who volunteered during our food pantry, more than half are recurring – volunteering two or more times. You distributed over 77,000 pounds of food to local families in need. 

We were flooded with requests from local community members and businesses who wanted to help. High-skilled volunteers donated their expertise to bring awareness to the unique experiences of our clients. We are truly grateful to everyone who took the time to share our content, volunteer their time, give advice, send a donation, and make a connection. 

Our community is resilient. There is more to be done and we know you will meet this moment. If you are interested in getting involved, email us at rosannamontilla@nmic.org.

 
 

Volunteer Spotlight – Meet Caleb

Even as a freshman in high school, Caleb finds the time to volunteer – all while completing his school assigned reading.

“I came to NMIC when Fort Washington Collegiate Church put out the call for volunteers. I keep coming back to NMIC, because I realized that it’s easy to make a difference right in my neighborhood. Especially during COVID, people need help more than ever. And I am proud to do this.” Caleb, we are proud of you!

 
 

The Hungry Pet Project

We have seen images of, or personally experienced, extensive blocks-long lines of people waiting to pick up food at their local pantry. 

What is not often shown is how food insecurity is affecting our furry friends: family pets. A few months ago, we were approached by The Hungry Pet Project, Partnership for Shelter Animals NYC to distribute cat and dog food to families facing insecurity. A one-time donation evolved into a partnership that has now allowed us to provide a source of dependable pet food to our clients. 

The partnership’s goal is to help keep pets in their homes. According to The Hungry Pet Project, “No one should have to choose between feeding themselves or feeding their pets.” And what might a dog say before eating? Bone Appetite!  

If you’d like to help, you can purchase items from the Amazon Wish List curated by The Hungry Pet Project.

 
 

Yours in Community,
NMIC

 

 

Happy New Year

 

Dear Friends,

This year, the pandemic has brought us to a flashpoint, where community-wide efforts are pivotal to supporting one another, as we strive to meet health inequities with courage and unrelenting commitment. It is imperative that the work continues – thank you for your support and being a member of our community. 

 

 

We wish you a peaceful holiday and invite you to look ahead to a new year with

purpose and intention.

 

Thank you for helping us create impactful partnerships and life-changing relationships.  

 

Yours in Community,
The NMIC Team

 

Giving Tuesday

 

Hi there,

 

Every year, millions of people come together on a single day to participate in a global act of generosity. That day is today, #GivingTuesday.

 

 

We know this year has been challenging for many of us in differing ways. Many of our clients found themselves unemployed, uninsured, and under-resourced even before the pandemic. With an increasing number of community members facing a crisis our work is more essential than ever. 

 

NMIC’s food pantry has served over 600 families since launching in May. Our pantries occur twice per month and we have distributed over 30,000 pounds of food. But, resources are limited and demand is much greater than we can meet. Even after adding an additional pantry distribution day, we continue to receive about 50-100 new sign-ups monthly from community residents. We cannot meet the demand without your support. 

 

There are two key ways to help right now. 

  1. Make a donation to NMIC today! 
  2. If you can’t make a donation, reach-out to loved ones via social media, phone, or email, urging them to support the 14,000 New Yorkers NMIC serves a year. Tag us at @NMICNYC. 

Can we count on you today?

 

Yours in Solidarity,
NMIC

 

November Notes from NMIC 2020

 

Hi there,

This month, most Americans turn their attention to practicing gratitude, which can be both challenging and deeply healing in the wake of a global crisis. In this newsletter, we’re focusing on the gratitude we feel for all of you, our community of supporters, clients, donors, volunteers, and staff. You are essential to all that we do. 

 

We’re sharing our gratitude for all that your support has helped us accomplish this month.

  • You have helped bring Thanksgiving dinners to 112 families. And, in this month, 300 more will receive food through our normally scheduled food pantry!
  • Our staff brings mental health care into community member’s homes remotely.
  • Help us expand access to immediate life changing services.
 

Food for our Community

The global economic crisis has hit those at the margins hardest. So, when community member Karima Khawja came to us with an idea to host a Turkey Drive, we were excited to partner with her. With your help we were able to raise over $5,000!

 

Though the Turkey Drive is over, we are still very much on the front lines of battling food insecurity one bag of food at a time. Our pantries occur twice per month serving 300 clients. Resources are limited and the need is great. Unfortunately, we are receiving about 50-100 new sign-ups per month from community residents. We cannot meet the demand without your support.

 

Our Wonderful Staff & Clients

We are proud to be an organization staffed and run by people who come from the community we serve. We are able to give our clients culturally sensitive care in the language they speak at home. Our team is entirely dedicated to and enmeshed in our community’s successes. Since the beginning of the pandemic, our staff has risen together to make incredible moves, from integrating our Food Pantry into a regularly scheduled program to the creation of hotlines to keep our services safely available. We are also honored to represent a space where people feel they can address their crises and know they’ll be heard and assisted. Just like Miriam*. Suffering from panic attacks that landed her in the emergency room, when our Community Health Workers’ team called Miriam, she was distressed and in tears. Mounting coronavirus deaths, having to juggle a home life that now included children at home full-time, she felt her mental health worsening. Our staff member provided a listening ear and thoughtful support. At the end of the call, Miriam said she felt better and was grateful for the check-in which she indicated always made her feel calmer. 

 

Your end of year gift will enable us to continue to provide our community members with the personal health support they need to keep their families safe and healthy.

*Name has been changed to protect our client’s privacy.

 

Giving Tuesday is December 1st this Year

Every year, millions of people come together on a single day to participate in a global act of generosity. That day is known as #GivingTuesday, and this year it’s tomorrow, December 1st. We know this year has been challenging for many of us in differing ways.

 

Many of our clients found themselves unemployed, uninsured, and under-resourced even before the pandemic. Now, their need is even greater. With an increasing number of community members facing unemployment, food insecurity, domestic violence, and financial difficulties, our work is more essential than ever. 

 

Now is the time to start reaching out to loved ones via social media, the phone, or email, urging them to join you in supporting the 12,000 New Yorkers NMIC serves a year. Use the graphic below and tag us at @NMICNYC.

 

Yours in Solidarity,
NMIC

 

With You

 

Dear Friends,

This year has been especially challenging for us all. Many have lost their lives, their jobs, and their homes. While others have experienced, and continue to experience, a progression of losses to their civil rights. 

 

“Unprecedented” seems to be the go-to word to describe what we have experienced thus far. Despite the obstacles we’ve faced, our immigrant community continues to embody strength, resilience, and grace. In this moment, we are acutely aware of the importance of our work and the impact we have on the lives of those living on the margins. In the face of the many challenges ahead, NMIC will continue to: 

•Provide access to address immediate crises. 

•Support families who rely on us, and whose lives have become even more difficult.

•Connect community members to sustainable resources for self-sufficiency.

We can’t do it alone, we need you. Take your time to gather your thoughts. This is hard work. And when you’re ready, we will be waiting for you gathering in community, organizing, fighting for equitable access.

 

Yours in Community,

 

 

Maria Lizardo, LMSW

 

 

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