This has been an extremely rough year for our community (yet again) and the list of people who continued to show up and step up during the continued pandemic is way too long try to capture in this journal entry. We at the Network are grateful to ALL of you who coalesced to get our community through this dreadful time, but below we take a moment to shout-out of a few of our many champions:
Our City and State government partners were invaluable when it came to vaccines: they were on the spot, day and night to try to get as many shots in as many arms as soon as possible. Both teams were in constant communication with our community – joining frequent calls and providing educational opportunities. OMH’s team was enormously helpful statewide, setting up sites, bringing vaccine clinics to residences, providing webinars and joining our direct staff provider meetings. At the City, the Vaccine Team worked with the Network on a variety of schemes to utilize then-precious vaccines including jerry rigging an end of day system to utilize excess shots to tenants of nearby residences at one point! The dedication and resourcefulness of both City and State agencies was boundless. Thank you.
In New York City, the Network continued to work with our partners to distribute PPE to our nonprofit members. For the supply we need to thank the wonderful folks at the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS), with a special shout out to Juan Batista II and Shawn Witten. For the distribution we have to thank Mega Contracting for letting us use two of their warehouses this past year as well as helping to staff the process. We also thank Magnusson Architecture and Planning (MAP) for helping us distribute. And we can’t forget the help of honorary Network staffer Jerry Mascuch..
Staff in our members’ organizations continued to be amazing. They kept tenants safe and informed about masks, vaccines and community spread. They delivered meals, held COVID-safe gatherings, covered co-workers shirts, and SHOWED UP amid confusion and fear. They continued – for yet ANOTHER long year -- to be our heroes.
And of course we’d like to thank tenants who helped each other through this tough time. They helped deliver food to neighbors, they shared their experience of getting the vaccine to help keep one another safe, they checked in on each other and helped keep spirits up in what was often a very bleak time.
We at the Network feel so blessed to be a part of this incredible community.