CUNY TV called on our experts when exploring eating disorders in NYC’s Asian American community. Our medical director, Dr. Sandeep Dhringra, discusses the widespread issue, which affects one in five Asian American women, and how work like ours helps them begin to heal. The episode will air throughout March, and is available any time online:
This is terrific recognition for our Asian Outreach program, which has become an essential part of the communities it serves, helping families support each other and children work through trauma. And it is a great way for us to raise awareness of these kinds of disorders–and to help people find solutions and hope.
For a schedule of viewing times go to www.cuny.tv.
Head Start teacher Lorena Buitrago shares a book with students in our Woodside classroom.
The economic downturn over the last five years has led to belt-tightening everywhere–and particularly by nonprofits. Since 2009, funding to human-services nonprofits has been slashed by a billion dollars. At the same time, the cost of living has continue to rise, making it even harder for those that were already struggling to get by.
Every day we see families in our programs who work multiple jobs but still can’t cover their expenses. Today, some 15% of state residents now live below the poverty line. Just when services like early childhood education, job training, and after school programs are needed most, nonprofits have been forced to cut back.
And yet a bit of good news came from Albany recently, Continue reading
This holiday season, The Child Center is overwhelmed with the generosity and good will of people who created special moments for our children and families.
World Cares Center‘s Project Elf brought Santa and presents to our after-school participants at Beach 41st Cornerstone Community Center. World Cares Center, an organization focused on empowering communities through disaster response training and coordination, came to The Child Center bearing gifts for over 100 children. The night before the gift-giving, they transformed the gym with decorations, pictures of presents, snowflakes and streamers. On December 8, children and parents came through the doors and were greeted by Santa Claus, fun art activities, and gifts.
In a moment of silence, Queens United Middle School students quietly raise both hands in a gesture that has become iconic over the last few months–“Hands up, don’t shoot.” It’s the final image in a student-led video project that highlights a voice we don’t always hear in the debate about racial inequality and police brutality–the teens who want people to know their lives matter, too.
The video project started with a Queens United Middle School forum, held after the decision not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for shooting a young unarmed black man, Michael Brown. When the school gave kids a chance to share their feelings, the forum showed that students had a lot to say.
This holiday season, our afterschool programs are encouraging kids to give back. Our programs celebrated the Thanksgiving season by raising awareness about hunger and homelessness.
During National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week (November 15-23), the COMPASS program at P.S. 96 asked for an end to hunger and homelessness, not just in the community but nationwide. Throughout the week, kids watched videos and learned lessons on hunger, homelessness and philanthropy. They collected socks and canned food for a donation drive to help out, and they drew attention to the issue with an “X-OUT Homelessness” campaign. To raise awareness, students placed an “X” made of duct tape on their book bags, shirts or sweaters.
COMPASS program staff set an example of service by volunteering at the Masbia Soup Kitchen in Coney Island. They peeled, chopped and diced, preparing 480 pounds of vegetables that the soup kitchen will turn into delicious soups and dinner plates for the hungry. Continue reading
During the holiday months, The Child Center’s families come together for events centered around healthy food, fun, and family togetherness. These programs bring the whole family together—not just for arts and crafts and other fun, but also to talk about gratitude and growing closer.
Our programs celebrated National Food Day on October 24, a day focused on inspiring Americans to change their diets and our food policies. We participated in NYC’s Big Apple Crunch, a fun citywide event promoting healthy food. Our Woodside Head Start program joined in the celebration by inviting families to help them crunch their way through healthy, fresh apples.
The Child Center of NY was pleased to partner with Queens Community House to host a day of health education, fun, raffles, Zumba, and face painting. On November 22, the community came together for A Community Approach to Family Health, a family-focused event sponsored by Advantage Care Physicians.
The morning started at Parsons Beacon program with registration, tables inviting people to register for The Child Center’s Single Stop program. Congresswoman Grace Meng gave some opening remarks before Monica Corbett, a community leader and Chair of Pomonok Houses Resident Association, spoke to the crowd. Reverend Alfonso Wyatt led the group in a chant that inspired kids and parents to take charge of their health and take care of their bodies.
Advantage Care Physicians led the group in break-out sessions that helped educate people on child development at every stage: Nursery and Elementary School Years, Middle School Years, and High School Years. Continue reading
Elisa Pimentel is starting her third year as the director of the after-school program at PS 89 in Elmhurst, Queens. She oversees a staff of 35 who teach dancing, art, and theme-based learning to 300 children in the afternoons throughout the school year, and during seven weeks of summer. Her students are mainly low-income and working class immigrants who collectively speak at least a dozen languages.
Elisa understands what they are going through. She is from the neighborhood. She attended PS 89 herself. When she was 17 and graduated high school, she started volunteering here in hopes that it would lead to an entry level job as a youth worker. The bet paid off, and within three months she was hired. Since then she put in years of hard work, and went up the ladder with promotions. In 2012 she earned her bachelor’s and is now a NYS certified teacher.
When Mayor de Blasio wanted to find an innovative way to help at-risk kids, he called on experts throughout the city to help him. One of those experts was Deepmalya Ghosh, The Child Center’s associate executive director of youth development and community engagement. Ghosh was appointed to the mayor’s Community School Advisory Board, working this summer with de Blasio and 48 other local leaders to plan for the creation of 100 “community schools” in some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods.
For kids to thrive in school and every part of their lives, they need the active support of their families and communities. Community schools are designed to foster that support by serving as hubs for a comprehensive range of services for the whole family: access to quality health care, mental health counseling, homework help and tutoring, and community activities, among others. In New York City, the first 40 will be piloted in existing schools that have the city’s lowest attendance rates.