Press Mentions

Featured Press Mention

Format: 2020-07-11
Format: 2020-07-11

Rahsaan Harris is CEO of the Citizens Committee for New York City, a nonprofit that aims to help New Yorkers — especially people in low-income areas — improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods. During his varied career in philanthropy — leading the Emma Bowen Foundation and Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy, serving as a program officer at Atlantic Philanthropies, and writing his Ph.D. dissertation on Black philanthropy — Harris has confronted the nonprofit world's lack of diversity. "I know what it looks like," he says, "I've starred in that movie."

How to Tackle Race at Your Organization
Eden Stiffman
July 02, 2020

Of course, neighborhood associations are nothing new. But the current moment is a unique time to begin one.

How to Start a Neighborhood Association
Katherine Cusumano
June 11, 2020

How can you be an ally to the Black community? Citizens Committee for New York City CEO, Dr. Rahsaan Harris, explains on CBS New York how people can show genuine solidarity for racial justice

How to be an "ally" to the black community
CBS News
June 08, 2020

Eleven Manhattan small businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic will receive $93,000 in relief money for rent, employee pay and more from a nonprofit grant program.

Family-owned Silom Thai in Chelsea will get $10,000 to help stay open after the restaurant offered free meals to health care workers. Enoch's Bike shop in Hell’s Kitchen will also get $10,000 to pay for new infrastructure for social distancing, better ventilation and sanitation.

Tutoring company BOK Solutions, which works with the city to provide public school students programing, will use a $10,000 grant to pay for their instructors’ and teachers’ wages after all in-person sessions were canceled, putting a big hole in the businesses’ income. Family-owned Garber Hardware will get a $10,000 grant after a sharp decrease in sales.

Consulting, design and development agency Van West Group – which creates campaigns for small and mid-sized businesses -- will get $10,000 to pay employees and rent and continue to help drive traffic to their clients.

Immigrant-owned Yours Spa on 18th Street will also get a $10,000 grant to help cover operating costs after coronavirus shut down the store, making them unable to pay bills, wages and rent.

Alfredo Ray Salon in Chelsea will get $8,500, Nextmedia.tv will get $8,000, interior design firm Garcia / Maldonado will get $6,500 and Massage Beyond will get $5,000. Daniel Cooney Fine Art will use a $5,000 grant to create a new website so customers can still buy pieces online.

The West Side Small Business Grants were created to help struggling stores and organizations cover operating costs and other spending so they can stay in business despite declines in sales from coronavirus restrictions.

The grant program was launched by the West Side Community Fund in partnership with the Citizens Committee for New York City and was seeded by funding from Google.

Latest coronavirus updates: Click here for our roundup of the most important developments from NYC and around the world.

Manhattan small businesses get coronavirus relief from grants by West Side Community Fund
Anna Sanders
May 27, 2020

The COVID-19 precautions of sheltering in place and social distancing bring with them both the burdens of entropy and the opportunity for evolution. Either way, it’s not business as usual—and once we return to the days when sit-down trumps take-out, and browsing in a store is a viable choice to rival shopping with your browser, how many of our mom-and-pops will be there to open their doors?

Sadly, these valuable but vulnerable businesses—everything from restaurants to salons to food carts to retail shops—may be less eligible for federal stimulus loans that are keeping others afloat.

Seeking to correct that inequity and supplement other economic relief efforts, The West Side Small Business Grants (WSSBG) program was launched on April 23 of this year. Grant applications are now being accepted for “small businesses [of up to 10 employees] that have been economically hurt by COVID-19 and subsequent stay-at-home mandates,” noted a press release announcing the program. To access the application, click here.

“Nobody in our community has escaped the hardship brought on by this virus, which is why it’s vital that we work together to preserve our neighborhood,” said Michael Phillips, President of Jamestown and West Side Community Fund leader. “Today’s [April 23] announcement means essential money in the hands of small business leaders, so they can adapt their businesses or pay rents, insurance, employee wages and other costs.”

Citizens Committee for New York City (Citizens NYC), the press release further noted, will continue its longtime partnership with the West Side Community Fund (WSCF) by administering the grants, which will serve those in Chelsea, Hudson Yards, and Hell’s Kitchen.

Seeking further clarity regarding the fund’s scope and purpose, Chelsea Community News spoke with Scott Young, VP Development and Communications, Citizens NYC.

West Side Small Business Grants Program Offers Help to the Economically Hurt
Scott Stiffler
Chelsea Community News
May 01, 2020

The West Side Community Fund is now offering grants to help small businesses in Chelsea, Hudson Yards and Hell’s Kitchen stay alive during the COVID-19 pandemic and the stay-at-home order that has shuttered many neighborhood businesses.

Business owners with 10 employees or less can apply for the grants starting April 23 and are eligible for between $5,000 and $10,000. The nonprofit Citizens community for New York City will be responsible for distributing money to the winners, who will be announced on a rolling basis.

The grants are intended to help business owners pay rents, insurance, employee wages and other costs that they may struggle to pay because of the virus’s economic impact.

“Nobody in our community has escaped the hardship brought on by this virus, which is why it’s vital that we work together to preserve our neighborhood,” said Michael Phillips, president of Jamestown and West Side Community Fund leader.

Google, Jamestown, Related/Oxford Hudson Yards, Tapestry Inc.’s Coach Foundation, WarnerMedia and Wells Fargo Foundation provided seed money for the fund’s grants.

New York Rep. Jerry Nadler (D – 10) thinks that the grants are an essential step to helping businesses stay afloat during a time of crisis, he said.

“While absolutely necessary to combat the spread of the virus, it’s no question that many businesses — especially small- and medium-size businesses — have been hurting because they are operating at a limited capacity, or in some cases not at all,” Nadler said, calling the grants “a lifeline.”

West Side nonprofit offers grant money to struggling small businesses
Grant Lancaster
April 24, 2020

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More Press Mentions

MANHATTAN – West Side Community Fund (WSCF) and Citizens Committee for New York City representatives were joined by Rep. Jerrold Nadler on Friday for a visit to the Ryan Chelsea-Clinton Community Health Center to learn more about the services the Center is providing with support from the WSCF’s Chelsea & Hudson Yards grant program. The Center received three WSCF grants to run quarterly brunch workshops that connect healthcare professionals with black and Latino men to encourage safe sex practices; bring its Mobile Health Center directly to Chelsea’s NYCHA population; and expand the center’s Nutrition Outreach Workshops to address food insecurity and promote healthy eating. Ryan Health officials including President and CEO Brian P. McIndoe, Ryan Chelsea-Clinton Executive Director Dan Pichinson; Ryan Health Board Chair E. Ronald Guy and Board Member Harriet Chan King were joined by medical, nursing and outreach staff to discuss the program’s impact on vulnerable and underserved New Yorkers.

'It was great to visit the Ryan Chelsea-Clinton Community Health Center and see the impact of the West Side Community Fund’s support of their important work,' said Rep. Jerrold Nadler. 'It’s critical that we expand access to healthcare for all New Yorkers, and this funding is going a long way towards that goal. My thanks to the great team at the Center and to the WSCF for their work to serve everyone on Manhattan’s West Side.'

'Congressman Nadler got a firsthand look at Ryan Chelsea-Clinton and the additional work we’re doing thanks to the three grants from the West Side Community Fund,' said Brian P. McIndoe, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ryan Health. 'We’re working to connect our health care professionals and HIV prevention with black and Latino gay men, promote nutrition and healthy eating, and bring our Mobile Health Center into the community to ensure even greater access to high-quality health care.'

'Jamestown is pleased to partner with the West Side Community Fund and Rep. Nadler to support the Ryan Chelsea-Clinton Community Health Center, which provides high-quality medical care to underserved New Yorkers,' said Michael Phillips, President of Jamestown. 'We encourage Chelsea and Hudson Yards-based organizations to apply for WSCF grants by the September 13th deadline.'

'Thanks so much to Rep. Nadler and everyone at Ryan Health for taking the time to discuss how the West Side Community Fund is supporting these critical efforts to reach underserved New Yorkers. There’s no question the WSCF grants are already having a big impact on lives across Chelsea, Hudson Yards and the entire West Side, and I urge all local organizations to apply for the next round of funding,' said Peter H. Kostmayer, CEO of Citizens Committee for New York City.

 

Click the Press Release document below to read more about the Chelsea & Hudson Yards Grant Program

Press Release
August 12, 2019

NEW YORK – The West Side Community Fund (WSCF) today announced that applications are being accepted for the second round of this year’s Chelsea & Hudson Yards Grants, which aim to spur new neighborhood initiatives on the West Side of Manhattan. The WSCF was formed last year by a coalition of 20 leading West Side businesses and firms to support programs and initiatives in the Chelsea and Hudson Yards neighborhoods.

Grants will be awarded to organizations and projects located in, or providing services to residents of, the area extending from 14th Street to 38th Street, from 7th Avenue to 12th Avenue, an area that is being impacted by extensive new private development and investment. The Fund, which includes companies that have recently relocated to Hudson Yards and/or are active in the neighborhood, seeks to ensure that the increased investment and economic activity brings demonstrable benefits and improved services to Chelsea and Hudson Yards residents. The Fund was initiated by Google and Related/Oxford Hudson Yards, and is administered by Citizens Committee for New York City. 

 

Press Release
July 16, 2019

NEW YORK – Citizens Committee for New York City (CCNYC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life in neighborhoods across New York City, is pleased to announce that Nixon Peabody’s Tatiana E. Gutierrez, a partner in the firm’s Affordable Housing and Real Estate practice, has joined its Board of Directors.

Gutierrez focuses on affordable housing law, representing developers, investors, housing authorities and tenant groups on affordable housing transactions and regulatory issues. She is particularly passionate about social impact, technology, and the effect of housing on people’s lives. She started her career in affordable housing at the Harrison Institute for Public Law and has provided pro bono counsel to tenant associations, limited equity cooperatives and nonprofits.

Gutierrez received her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center. She was recognized in the 2014 edition of The Legal 500: USA as a Leading Lawyer in the Real Estate category and was recently named a 2019 Notable Women in Law honoree by Crain’s New York. She serves on the Board of Women in Housing Finance and on the Young New Yorkers for the Philharmonic Benefits Committee and was an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center.

Click the below link to open the release and read more.

 

 

Press Release
July 09, 2019

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