May 2023 – Notes from NMIC

With the sun shining and nature blossoming, we hope this newsletter finds you in high spirits. But wait, there’s more to be excited about – we’re thrilled to bring you the latest updates and news from NMIC, so buckle up! 

This month, we’re shining a spotlight on the outstanding work of our partners and supporters in uplifting our community’s residents. We can’t wait to share their stories of courage and impact with you. 

But wait, there’s more! Mark your calendars for our upcoming annual benefit – an evening of community, networking, and giving back. With an exciting award ceremony, and a top-notch DJ set, this event promises to be one for the books. 

Let’s embark on this incredible journey together, fueled by passion, purpose, and the unwavering belief in the power of community. Keep reading, you don’t want to miss Cafecito con Maria below! 

Meet Our Benefit Honorees 

Get ready to be blown away as we unveil the remarkable individuals who will be honored at this year’s highly anticipated annual benefit, Unidos: A NMIC Benefit. These extraordinary changemakers have left an indelible mark on our community, and it’s our absolute pleasure to acknowledge their exceptional commitment and outstanding service. 

Without further ado, we proudly present the distinguished 2023 benefit honorees. First, we have Dr. Aldrin Rafael Bonilla, the Executive Vice President of the Fund for the City of New York, whose visionary leadership has paved the way for transformative change. Next, we shine a spotlight on Tenant Cooperative 21 Arden, a group of twelve families who, after enduring a decade-long wait, are finally reclaiming their cherished homes. And last but certainly not least, we pay tribute to the four schools of Columbia University Irving Medical Center—Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University School of Nursing, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, and Columbia University College of Dental Medicine—for their unwavering dedication to the well-being of our community. 

The theme of the evening is “unidos,” a testament to our unwavering commitment to fostering unity and forging stronger, interconnected communities. These honorees have been carefully selected because they embody the very essence of our organization and have displayed extraordinary dedication to the well-being of our community members. 

Be part of this extraordinary celebration as we come together to applaud the inspiring work of these exceptional individuals at our upcoming benefit. You won’t want to miss out on this incredible event. Secure your ticket now by clicking here and be prepared to be inspired. 

Let’s stand together in admiration of these remarkable honorees and continue building a future where unity and compassion reign supreme. 

Secure your ticket now to Unidos: A NMIC Benefit! 

A Message from Liz 

The recent reductions in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) have had a profound impact on our communities, particularly on vulnerable groups such as children and seniors. Regrettably, more families are now facing the challenge of putting food on their tables, making it imperative for emergency food pantries like NMIC’s to step up and help. 

We are immensely grateful to have the unwavering support of dedicated individuals like Elizabeth Conde, who wholeheartedly acknowledge the vital role NMIC plays in delivering essential services to our community. By becoming a member of NMIC’s Spark Collective, a community of recurring donors, Elizabeth is making a significant difference in helping us sustain and expand our reach, ensuring that we can continue to provide immediate support whenever it is needed. 

“I decided to join NMIC’s Spark Collective to help NMIC continue to assist the members of our community,” Elizabeth Conde, Spark Collective Member and NMIC Advisory Board. 

At NMIC, we provide free services across five key areas: housing, immigration, benefits and finance, health, education and career, and holistic services. These comprehensive services are tailored to address the unique needs of our community members, empowering them with the tools necessary to achieve self-sufficiency. 

Are you eager to amplify your impact and make a positive difference? Waste no time and click here to join The Spark Collective today. Together, we can create a stronger and more resilient community for all. 

Thank You New York Bar Foundation 

NMIC has been chosen as a recipient of a generous grant from The New York Bar Foundation! This grant will play a pivotal role in advancing our mission of creating positive change in the lives of numerous individuals through our range of services. 

“The New York Bar Foundation is committed to supporting charitable projects that address the legal needs of the public and the profession. Our core focus lies in assisting people and recognizing the commendable efforts of the legal community,” stated Carla M. Palumbo, President of the Foundation. 

In recent times, the Foundation has allocated over $600,000 in grants to ninety-five programs throughout New York. Lucia Whisenand, Chair of the Grants Review Committee, emphasized the pressing need for vulnerable individuals to access legal services. By allocating funds for these grants, the Foundation is helping transform justice into a tangible reality for millions across New York State. 

To learn more about NMIC’s services, click here, and to contribute to our cause, click here to make a donation today. 

NMIC in France! 

We are thrilled to share that Maria Lizardo and Rosanna Montilla-Payano represented NMIC at the International Federation of Settlements and Neighborhood Centers (IFS) conference in Lille, France. This global gathering brought together over 11,000 member associations committed to positive change within community-based organizations worldwide. 

At the conference, Maria and Rosanna witnessed inspiring work addressing pressing global issues like inequality, climate change, and mental health. They were amazed by the innovative approaches shared by counterparts from different countries, who demonstrated resilience and creativity in community building. 

The experience left Maria and Rosanna even more determined and inspired. It reinforced our shared mission and the power of collaboration in creating a better world. Notably, esteemed organizations like University Settlement, United Neighborhood Houses, Jacob A. Riis, Grand Street Settlement, Queens Community House, Goddard Riverside, Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation, and St. Nicks Alliance, fostering collective wisdom and reinforcing the potential for transformative impact. 

We extend heartfelt gratitude to all who support our mission. Your unwavering dedication fuels our efforts to make a difference in the lives of those we serve. Together, we will continue building stronger, resilient communities with compassion and determination. 

Thank you for joining us on this incredible journey. 

Cafecito con Maria  

Get ready to take action! On May 9th, Maria Lizardo, LMSW, the Executive Director of NMIC, wrote a powerful Op-Ed in the Bronx Times, calling on the New York City Council to take action and protect the healthcare coverage of 4 million at-risk residents. With new federal rules requiring states to re-evaluate eligibility for public program enrollees from this spring onward, it’s crucial that we act now. 

Fortunately, MCCAP is here to help. As a free helpline and network of 12 community-based organizations, including NMIC, MCCAP has already assisted over 10,000 cases and saved New Yorkers nearly $600,000 in health care-related costs since the pandemic began in 2020. 

To ensure even more New Yorkers can receive the support they need, Lizardo urges the City Council to increase funding for MCCAP to $2.3 million in the FY24 budget. This will allow the program to expand its capacity and add 14 new community-based organizations to its network. Let’s not let New York City residents down when they need us the most. Join us in supporting MCCAP and preserving vital healthcare coverage. Check out the full article here for more information. 

NMIC in the News 

  • On May 22nd, Brooklyn Daily Eagle wrote an article titled, “600 Children Would Lose Child Care With the End of Free NYC Program for Undocumented Families.” Within the article, Kimberly Warner, Deputy Director of Legal, Organizing, and Advocacy Services for NMIC, states, “To take that away would mean, you know, possibly the family loses employment or a kid has nowhere to go during the day. It would be very destabilizing.” Click here to read more.


  • Mental Health Month  
  • Jewish Americans History Month 
  • Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month  
  • Latinos Books Month 
  • May 7-13, National Teachers Appreciation Week 
  • May 14-20, National Women’s Health Week  
  • May 5, Cinco de Mayo  
  • May 14, Mother’s Day 
  • May 25th, George Floyd Memorial Day  
  • May 29, Memorial Day 
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