New York CIty Council Member Ben Kallos

MONICA MORALES

PIX11 Senior centers closed in New York City, though meals are available by MONICA MORALES

Senior centers closed in New York City, though meals are available

NEW YORK — Monday morning, the signs are everywhere: closed.

Hundreds of senior centers across the city were close because of coronavirus. But Jacklyn Reed, 69, of Harlem, said she still needs her meal.

“I’m sick. I’m a dialysis patient. I have cancer. I’m getting my meal. It's a life saver,” said Reed.

At the King Towers senior center between 112th and 113th streets on Lenox Avenue, seniors have to grab and go.

Across town in Yorkville, seniors are picking up their lunch at the Isaacs Center on 93rd Street and 1st Avenue.

Barbara Scavone got her meal Monday afternoon, but she was not happy; she says she misses her friends.

Councilmember Ben Kallos represents the Upper East Side, Midtown East, Roosevelt Island and East Harlem; he tweeted this call to action: "The Isaac Center is looking for volunteers to serve the community in this time of need."

“We are looking for some heros, some volunteers who are feeling fine, who are willing to go there, pick things up, deliver to seniors, knock or ring and leave it there, and keep the social distancing and get people that food,” asked Kallos.

Reach out if you want to be a volunteer: communitysupport@isaacscenter.org

PIX11 NYC Affordable Housing Crisis: Helping Puerto Rican grandma who evacuated Hurricane Maria get a home by MONICA MORALES

NYC Affordable Housing Crisis: Helping Puerto Rican grandma who evacuated Hurricane Maria get a home

NEW YORK -- Rosa Rodriguez from Brooklyn says her 65-year-old mother Anna Rivera survived so much this past year. Her husband passed away. She survived cancer. Then Hurricane Maria destroyed her home in Puerto Rico. Rivera fled to NYC for a better life.

But Rodriguez doesn’t have the resources right now to help her mother find her own home here in NYC.

“She cries everyday. She’s losing hope,” Rodriguez said.

Councilmember Ben Kallos, who represents the Upper East Side and Roosevelt Island, says one of the biggest battles in NYC is preserving affordable housing.

“The population keeps growing and growing and it’s a crisis," Kallos said. "We can’t build our way out of it but what we can do is make sure people who are building new housing build affordable mandatory affordable housing."

Darma Diaz, with a grassroots organization called YNCCA, an organization that says it's helped place dozens of Hurricane Maria evacuees, saw PIX11’s story and sprung into action for Maria.

More on YNCCA can be found here.

A spokesperson for Human Resources Administration says, “We have assisted over 2,500 evacuees from Puerto Rico who registered with the Service Center the City created immediately after Hurricane Maria by connecting them to benefits such a SNAP and Cash Assistance, health insurance, mental health counseling, and assistance for displaced students, among other services. In addition, we made 945 referrals to Homebase, the City’s homelessness prevention program which provides a variety of prevention services to assist families and individuals experiencing housing crisis and are at imminent risk of entering shelter.”

If you can help Rivera, email Monica Morales direct at monica@pix11.com

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