Oyate Group Anniversary: Two Years of Empowering Each Other and Rising Together
When COVID-19 hit the U.S. in March 2020, New York quickly became the global epicenter of the pandemic. Each and every one of us experienced the effects of the pandemic, however, it was our most under-resourced communities that bore the brunt of our first wave. We knew we had to do something to mitigate long-term negative impacts.
The Oyate Group launched within weeks of COVID reaching our city. We started by tackling the issues of inequity that made the Bronx the hardest-hit borough, but our goal from day one has been to address and eliminate poverty across every borough.
Two years later, we’ve managed to accomplish so much of what we set out to do, thanks to you. As we approach our second anniversary, we want to share how your support, friendship, partnership and contributions have made an impact and take a moment to appreciate how far we’ve come together.
In 2020 we…
- Launched the Bronx Rising Initiative
- Expanded ICU bed capacity in the Bronx by 35%
- Provided over $200,000 in grants to local Bronx businesses
- Offered over $100,000 in grants to organizations fighting food insecurity in the Bronx
- Launched the Brandon Hendricks Scholarship offering $5,000 to five Bronx youth headed to college
In 2021 we…
- Vaccinated over 30,000 people across the Bronx, Washington Heights and Harlem against COVID-19; more than doubling our original goal of 15,000 vaccinated
- Knocked on over 10,000 doors in NYCHA developments to encourage and facilitate vaccination
- Launched new programs including Uptown Rising Initiative, to close resource gaps in Washington Heights and Harlem, and A Mother’5 Promi5e, to put an end to gun violence in our communities
- Provided $50,000 to 10 additional young folks from the Bronx headed to college through the Brandon Hendricks scholarship
- Expanded our food insecurity initiatives to bring healthy, fresh produce directly to communities in need in the Bronx, Washington Heights and Harlem
- Removed over 70 guns from the streets of the Bronx through our first-ever gun buyback
So much more is yet to come. As we head into the third year of this pandemic, we’re seeing the long-term impacts on our communities, and new and different needs are emerging. But we’re also seeing how folks continue to show up to protect themselves and support each other.
We’ve already kicked off the year with a successful gun buyback in Washington Heights, where we collected 50 guns from the community, have hosted vaccine events in Washington Heights and in local Bronx schools and are on the way to opening our first-ever physical space in the Bronx.
Your crucial support has allowed us to not just address the effects of the pandemic but to begin to address the root causes of the many inequities we see in our communities. We look forward to working with you to continue to make our communities safer, healthier and happier in the coming year. When we empower each other, we rise together!
Looking for partners for community events and programming? We’d love to learn how we can support you.
Stay tuned for more,
The Oyate Team
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