Our Supporters

Supporter Spotlight: Jennifer Milacci

Ten years ago, Jennifer Milacci, then expecting her second child, was looking for volunteer opportunities that championed issues close to her heart. “I was drawn to organizations that helped children and families,” Milacci recalls, and that’s when she learned of The Child Center of NY. Milacci quickly became a board member, and, in the years since, her acuity in sales and marketing has come in handy for our organization.

We talked with Milacci about everything from her invaluable work on our Annual Gala committee to an upcoming shopping event at her own apartment to a particularly poignant memory of a dodgeball tournament that included her daughter.

How were you were first introduced to The Child Center of NY?
In mid 2007, I came to learn of The Child Center through the Robin Hood Foundation. Robin Hood had a process by which they introduced individuals interested in potentially serving as board members ‎to their underlying grantee organizations, of which The Child Center was and remains.

I was pregnant with my second child at the time, and I was drawn to organizations that helped children and families. They matched me with The Child Center, and I met with the executive director at the time and a board member to learn more. Then I visited one of the Child Center’s Head Start programs in Queens, attended a few board events, and I eventually joined the board a few months later.

Tell us about your day job and how it’s prepared you for your role on The Child Center’s board of directors.
I work at a hedge fund in a sales and marketing role, and I think that experience has provided insight into the overall messaging and branding of the organization. In addition, as an active participant in planning our Annual Gala, ‎my contribution is augmented by my years of marketing in the private sector. I believe my business experience has also offered a perspective when faced with management and organizational challenges.

What does your work for The Child Center involve?
As a board member, I attend board meetings, and in that capacity I help to influence the direction of the organization and guide senior management in their execution of The Child Center’s goals.

For a number of years, I have served on the Gala committee and acted as co-chair for the event. We work alongside an outside consultant to decide on all aspects of the annual fundraiser, which is one of our biggest opportunities to raise outside money.

Our goal is to help provide the appropriate messaging and solicit and raise funds that support the Child Center’s various programs. We often feature our young beneficiaries in the show — and their energy and success stories are inspirational and heartwarming.

Tell us a bit about the shopping event in February and the Gala 2018 committee.
We are hosting a fundraising shopping event in February at my apartment. This is an opportunity to engage with potential donors in a small setting ‎while accessing a local designer. A portion of the proceeds spent during the event will go to The Child Center. This is the second of these types of events that we’re holding in order to broaden our fundraising reach.

Can you tell us about a particularly satisfying project or moment working with The Child Center?
A few years ago, we hosted a dodgeball tournament as a fundraising event at Chelsea Piers. Along with a couple other board members, we formed teams to compete — and mine included my daughter and her classmates. It was a chance to get the younger generation involved and demonstrate what The Child Center does while making a small impact at the same time.

A group of step dancers from one of The Child Center’s afterschool programs performed with amazing enthusiasm and passion. My daughter’s team didn’t play so well in their dodgeball games — but they came away feeling proud that their financial contribution was going to a good cause.

What would you say to someone who asks why they should get involved with The Child Center?
We have thousands and thousands of children and families in NYC who don’t know about or have access to basic resources that so many of us take for granted. Being able to provide early preschool education so parents can work for a decent wage or offering afterschool programs to keep young adolescents off the streets is a very fulfilling opportunity.

A single success story from one of our programs fills me with pride and keeps me engaged and wanting to do more, whether that be by spending my time or money — both of which help make a difference.

Interested in attending events such as the private shopping fundraiser? Get in touch with us at fundraising@childcenterny.org.

My Mitzvah Project

Adam Donowitz used his Mitzvah project for his Bar Mitzvah to donate to The Child Center of NYBy Adam Donowitz

A soon-to-be teenager marked his passage to young adulthood with a commitment to give kids a better childhood.

When I sat down to decide what my mitzvah project would be, I was inspired by my family. So many people in my family have spent their lives helping children, and I realized I wanted my mitzvah project to do that too. Continue reading

Head Start Students Get Surprise Visit from World-Renowned Chef

Our Head Start students are no strangers to exciting visitors. Last year, the world-famous red monster Elmo dropped by. And in 2015, our Head Start students in Corona began the holiday season with a visit from then-New York Secretary of State Cesar Perales, Assembly Member Jeffrion Aubry, and U.S. Congressman Joe Crowley.

But yesterday marked the first time our preschoolers were able to spend time with an internationally renowned chef. Continue reading

Ashley Dean: Doing the Most Good

At The Child Center of NY, we simply wouldn’t be able to provide the same level of service were it not for the generous support of donors at all giving levels.  Part of the challenge we — and all non-profit organizations — face is how to engage and maintain engagement with millennials, who often feel removed from the tangible results their philanthropic efforts might yield.  Younger people may give less money, perhaps because the amount they can spare is a proportionately greater share of their assets and income.  But they give thoughtfully and strategically, and their gifts make a big difference.

Ashley Dean, an audit associate with KPMG’s Asset Management division, is only 25 years old. But having grown up in a poor, “socially oriented” family, she already knows the intrinsic value of giving back. Continue reading

Ahead of US Open, Pro Players “Return the Love” to Child Center Campers

The Child Center of NY is the place to be if you’re a kid who’s into professional sports. Last summer, our Far Rockaway RBI little leaguers participated in Major League Baseball’s All-Star Youth Classic. This spring, they scored free tickets to Bat Day at Yankee Stadium. And yesterday, campers from our Latimer Community Cornerstone were invited to the US Open’s fourth annual Queens Day celebration at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. Continue reading

Generous Donor Provides Little Leaguers with Day at Yankee Stadium

It’s been quite a ride for Far Rockaway RBI in the three years since its inception — sometimes literally.

Last weekend, 28 Far Rockaway RBI ballplayers, along with 9 coaches and chaperones, rode the NYC Ferry from the peninsula to Manhattan. For most of them, it was their first time on a ferry. As if that weren’t exciting enough, they were headed to Bat Day at Yankee Stadium, where they got to see one of their favorite Major League Baseball teams in action. Continue reading

Supporter Spotlight: Katie Brennan

When Katie Brennan was first introduced to The Child Center of NY, it was a particularly difficult moment in her life. Her second child had just been born and had to go back in the hospital with an illness, her first was still young, and like any mother at least occasionally does, she was grappling with some stress. Continue reading

Breaking the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle

It’s never too soon to instill in children the importance of financial literacy — and it’s never too late for their parents to achieve it.

That’s why The Child Center promotes the concepts of budgeting and saving in age-appropriate ways across our programs.

At our Escalera Head Start in Manhattan, that recently took the form of a financial literacy workshop called, “Break the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle,” organized by volunteers from TD Bank. Continue reading

Local School Kids Celebrate Metsgiving

Curtis Granderson and Jose Reyes Usher in Holiday Season with Turkey Giveaway

Metsgiving #ChildCenterNY

The Mets’ Jose Reyes and Curtis Granderson gave out turkeys at M.S. 72

Thanksgiving came early for some 100 students from M.S. 72 (Catherine and Count Basie Middle School), P.S. 223 (Lyndon Johnson), and August Martin High School. New York Mets outfielder Curtis Granderson and his teammate, third baseman Jose Reyes, joined them this week at M.S. 72 in Jamaica, Queens, to hand out turkeys for their holiday meal. The giveaway was part of The Mets’ larger Metsgiving and Granderson’s Grand Giving campaigns, which have the shared goal of combatting hunger in New York City.  Continue reading

Translate »