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2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Palante Harlem Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Homeless & Housing, Homeowners & Tenants Associations, Housing & Shelter

Mission: To reduce poverty and advocate for safe housing by organizing, educating and empowering residents. We are committed to supporting each other and to preserving our quality of life, our health, and our personal safety by assisting tenants when their rights have been violated and by holding unresponsive landlords and building managers accountable.

Results: -99% of cases won or settled in and out of court -1,305 individuals and families received legal representation in court -2,686 individuals and families received legal assistance/counseling -821 families received rent reduction orders (rents frozen) -101 families received $2.7 million in rent abatements through the courts -58 families received $1.1 million in rent overcharge order with legally rents being established -Saved taxpayers an estimated $18 million in shelter costs by preventing evictions of 572 families -Preserved over 10,000 apartments through repairs and upgrades at no charge to tenants -Facilitated over 150 free legal clinics to 495 families -47 Restored to their home after being displaced due to a fire -83 families received “Know Your Tenant Rights” workshops – 64 women that are head of households -8 Restored to their home after court mandated eviction -Organized tenants (312 families) living at 8 severely distressed buildings: The buildings were enrolled in HPD’s enforcement programs resulting in the rehabilitation and capital building-wide repairs successfully made through the program -Ranked top rated non-profit by www.greatnonprofits.org for 7 years consecutively

Target demographics: Housing

Direct beneficiaries per year: 3000+

Geographic areas served: New York City

Programs: Tenant Organizing, Leadership Development, Mediation and Legal Services

Community Stories

140 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I would like to tell a great story, about a great non-profit organization; PA'LANTE, Harlem Inc. It has been and continue to be a great beacon of hope and inspiration to the Harlem Community, this organization helps to ; Educate, Train and Put Boots on The Ground, to inform the Harlem Community about their rights, when it comes to the Housing Crisis, that is tearing our community apart.I'm so glad and proud of being a monthly donor to this courageous organization for the great, vital and nessary work centered around this housing nightmare, we are facing in the Harlem Community. I want to take this opportunity to give a tremendous SHOUT-OUT-, the courageous and steadfast leadership to; Elsia Vasquez, Founder, Executive Director of PA'LANTE Harlem, Inc.1411 Amsterdam Avenue New York, NY 10027, Tel: (212) 491-2541, Fax: (212) 491-2542

Client Served

Rating: 5

Esta organizacion es excelente ayudando a las familias en necesidad especialmente en tiempos de crisis (Covi-19) son muy profesionales, honestos, responsables e informativos. gracias por la ayuda proporcionada a mi familia.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

It brings me great joy to know that there are still people out there that value our senior citizens. Elisa welcomed my father into her office and sat with us for hours, helping us defend ourselves from our abusive landlord. Her dedication and passion are invigorating and she has the patience of an angel. She worked diligently for hours with my little ones there and exceeded our expectations. We left feeling educated and empowered. Thank you for all you and Palante do. Raquel Cruz

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

This is an organization that truly invests in its community and takes the time to care for each individual. We were negotiating an issue with our landlord and after working with PALANTE the issue was resolved within a day. We take comfort in knowing that PALANTE. is willing and prepared to fight for the rights of this community. Thank you Elicia and thank you PALANTE!

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hello my name is Jakari Greene, I’ve been working with Pa'lante as intern for a few months and I can say the experience has been great. I choose to get involved with Pa'lante due to their work with helping individuals in need. Pa'lante devout their time making sure tenants are being treated with respect and morality from there landlords. From working here I’ve have witnessed miracles and tenants receiving proper justice in their cases. Each Client of ours is treated with care and is given the proper tools and guidance to fight against landlord exploitation. This organization has inspired me in many ways and gave me further insight on the many obstacles minorities face within housing. Working here has been amazing and I encourage everyone to get involved with Pa’lante and fight against landlord abuse and tenant exploitation.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Through this present I Taylon Pérez, I am an intern in the office of Pa'lante Harlem in New York City. I started working in Palante this summer thanks to the Catholic Charities organization. My first day at this job was a little nervous because it was something new since I had no thought that I would work in an organization whose motive is to help people have better housing conditions.
My experience was very good because I really liked the positive energy they transmitted to me, the treatment they gave me, made me feel happy and sure of myself. However, what I liked most was that as the housing conference was approaching, we were assigned different buildings to distribute flyers door to door so that the tenants attended and could learn more about their rights and the new rent laws. I liked this a lot because while I was doing it I was getting to know our community more and every day on the streets I heard people talking good about our organization. Also, In the housing conference we learned a lot of housing and all the rights we have as tenants. Palante is more than an organization it is a family. This organization different from other really care about you as a human being not just as a client. I have been witness of all the people they helped. Now I still work at Pa'lante Harlem and I feel so happy to be able to help our community. This organization really inspires teenagers like us to keep our dreams up and if we really want something we could always do it. If you need help, the best place to go is Pa'lante Harlem.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My name is Karen and I am an intern in P.A.’L.A.N.T.E Harlem. This was my summer job that I got through the SYEP Program directed by Catholic Charities.When I first heard about it, it seem very interesting because they help people with housing issues. I have always liked to help people in my community so I was really excited about it. At the beginning, I was really nervous because it was my first job. But the staff would always be helping you and supporting you. I worked all summer at P.A.’L.A.N.T.E Harlem. In the summer we did canvassing. This organization does a housing conference each year. This is very important for the tenants because you get a lot of information referring to housing like the New rent laws that protect more tenants, what to do in case your landlord is harassing you or if you need any repair to be done in your apartment. I think I had one of my best experiences at the housing conference because everybody knew about us and were grateful of how P.A.’L.A.N.T.E Harlem changed their life.This is a really good organization that helps tenants against landlord abuse and harassment. Also, they care a lot about the people and try to do day by day a better community. This organization changed my life. After the summer I stayed working at P.A.’L.A.N.T.E Harlem. I am so grateful for the opportunity that they gave me. Now, I’m learning more about housing and doing my best to help my community. P.A.’L.A.N.T.E Harlem

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I've attended two of Pa'lante's annual housing (2018 and 2019). I went to learn more about housing/tenant issues, see panels, and meet with City agencies. However, the biggest reason was because they have very knowledgeable and skilled housing court attorneys who offer free advice for tenants facing issues with their landlords.

As I've navigated the housing court process on my own, it's been challenging. The resources available to tenants is often quite mediocre - especially the "advice" you get at the courthouse from the Help Center. When you don't have deep pockets to pay for a lawyer, tenants are left in a very difficult position.

But of all the places that I've turned for advice, the lawyers who come to help people at the Pa'lante conference are thoughtful, well-informed, patient, and (most importantly) steer you in a helpful direction.

Without this conference, I would be in a significantly worse position with my case in housing court. It was also helpful that representatives were at the conference from places like HPD so I could ask relevant questions and get important phone numbers to better assert my rights.

I've also found Pa'lante's staff to have great attitudes and genuinely care about helping people. And my hat goes off to the people who posted signs all over Harlem in the summer heat. I had forgotten about the annual conference and the lawyer volunteers until I saw the sign posted. The timing was perfect since I'm due back in court next week.

I also really enjoyed the panel discussion -- especially the one on foreclosures and how people of color are being scammed out of their homes. The data presented was informative.

I highly recommend this organization's services!!!! It serves a very critical function in the community.

Thank you Pa'lante for all of your help and for organizing yet another wonderful conference!

1 Betty N.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I just attended PA’LANTE’s 2019 Annual Conference.
Excellent!
More than 700 Tenants and other affected community members attended the 3-Day Conference held in the Academic Center on the Campus of City College, Convent Avenue, Harlem.

Elsia Vazquez, the Director, runs a well-oiled, well-staffed organization in which energetic student volunteers also play an important role.

Too, PA’LANTE partners with key elected officials such as Borough Presidents Eric Adams (Brookyn) and Gaie Brewer (Manhattan), Council Members , NYPD.......

Useful and valuable information was disseminated.

Panelists were well-informed and quite prepared to answer the many important questions asked by attendees.

In my opinion, PA’LANTE represents “Excellence” in the sphere of Non Profit Organizations unselfishly serving the tenants of New York City.....and beyond.

Thank You, Elsia!

Elizabeth “Betty” Noel

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Palante is a valuable source of the community and brave advocate for many. Short time a go I was fearing the worst for a medical diagnosis what can have been that I have two months to go. I called Palante asking then if they know of a lawyer who does wills, I wanted to made sure my home is transferred to my love ones. In a few days I got a call from Palante, giving me an appointment, a lawyer was going to go to Palante to do wills. I couldn't believe it , they have found a lawyer for me. I went to the office at the time, and a very friendly lawyer was finishing serving another person and in short time he took care of me. I explain my situation, he typed the info and in literally ten minutes I have my will printed. Palante was able to offer free of charge a service so much need it.
good. PALANTE RESPOND they are fast, efficient and deliver; on top, it didn’t feel like a service it feels like a friend helping.

This was the first time they help me out personally. I have known Palante for almost three years now, and I have seen the level of passion when trying to made right what is wrong. I personally have accompanied the people at Palante to a meeting. In that case I was helping another person in an HDFC who have just lost her building, the title was transfer from day and night and I came with the story to Palante. They include the case of this building into the list of the other Third Party Transfer buildings that they are researching and advocating for. It is not treated likely any case at Palante, they look into it in deepness, they contrast info, they ask other for help, they research and write to try to help.
Thanks Palante!
Jana

Palante es una fuerza valiosa de la comunidad y un valiente defensor de los derechos de los residentes en la ciudad de Nueva York. Hace poco, temía lo peor para un diagnóstico médico, y de haber sido así me quedaban dos meses. Llamé a Palante y les pregunté si sabían de un abogado que hiciera testamentos, quise asegurarme de que mi casa era transferida a mis seres queridos. En unos pocos días recibí una llamada de Palante, me dieron una cita, un abogado iba a ir a Palante para hacer testamentos. No lo podía creer, me han encontrado un abogado. Fui a la oficina, y un abogado muy amable estaba terminando de servir a otra persona y en poco tiempo me atendió. Le expliqué mi situación, escribió la información y en diez minutos, literalmente, tenía impreso mi testamento. Palante fue capaz de ofrecer gratuitamente un servicio que tanto lo necesita. Ni siquiera ellos tenían este servicio, se hicieron cargo de mis circunstancias y lo buscaron para mí. PALANTE RESPONDE, son rápidos, eficientes y se entregan, y no se sintió como un servicio se siente como un amigo que ayuda.


Esta era la primera vez que me ayudaban a mí personalmente, pero conozco a Palante desde hace casi tres años, y he visto el nivel de pasión con el que se entregan en intentar corregir lo que está mal. He acompañado a las personas de Palante a una reunión. En ese caso, estaba ayudando a otra persona en un HDFC que acababa de perder su edificio, el título fue transferido de la noche al día y fui con la historia a Palante. Ellos, incluyeron el caso de este edificio en la lista de los otros edificios de Transferencia de Terceros que están defendiendo. No de una manera ligera, no, indagan, cogen datos, corroboran, argumentan, defienden.
Gracias Palante!
Jana





2

Client Served

Rating: 5

My mother suffers from dementia and was in jeopardy of losing her rent stabilized apartment of 41 years, until Pa'lante Harlem helped. This organization operates with professionalism, expertise, passion and unfettered determination to help tenants! After a year of back and forth to court, with no resolution or assistance from Adult Protective Services or the Guardian ad litem. Pa'lante Harlem stepped into action, making sure that my mother's rights where upheld and that she received the necessary assistance to allow her to remain in her apartment. They level of care and service we received by far exceeded our expectations. Thank you to the entire staff at Palante Harlem and the legal minds that volunteer their services!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Palante harlem was very helpful ,we got peace of mind within minutes of contacting them.Extreamly nice people very good service and knowledgeable i suggest you visit palante harlem, for any of your troubles.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Walkiria Colon and I live at 1600 Nelson hdfc. Last year around September 2018 my life change when the city of new York thru the TPT PROGRAM took over my building by just posting a piece of paper on the door of the building stating that from now on Neighborhood Restore was the new owner. I was shocked and confused as to how I could quickly turn from being an owner to becoming a tenant without a meaningful explanation. I had worked as many as three jobs at the same time to purchase my place years ago as a shelter and nest egg for myself and my son, and now that foundation had disappeared. I am a medical technician and well educated but this turn of events was unfamiliar and the system was new, so after reaching out to people in the community, somebody mentioned an organization helps people faced with this type of adversity. The people in my building were so desperate that we simply showed up at PALANTE HARLEM and from that moment our life changed when the people of PALANTE welcomed us and our problem. Elsia Vasquez took the time to ask about the problem and immediately connected and understood the challenge we faced. From that moment we met, something inside me told me she's going to help us, and OMG it was a blessing. I remember when we first arrived at PALANTE Harlem around 12pm, and after 9 hours of work, Elsia and her team were in action making phone calls and opening her network to help us give us the tools we needed. All the vibrant passion of the people in the PALANTE organization gave me hope and strength, and more important, it reinstated my faith that there are people who care about people's problems and difficult situations and willing to act in a professional and compassionate way. After that day I learn that I'm not alone. Thank you PALANTE Harlem for be there and helping us with our cause. You are the voice for many that don’t have the ability but are deeply in need. Thank you for all the effort and dedication in everything you do. There are no words to express the feeling of knowing that you have people like Elsia Vasquez and her team who is there for you and make sure that justice is delivered.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization has been God sent to my family and I!
I am currently going through a legal action with my landlord, who wants us out to rent for more than double to others.

This organization has helped me with the process and located legal representation to help me stay in my home in upper Manhattan.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

I reside in a HDFC (Housing Development Fund Corporation) and in September 2018, our life as we knew it came to a halt. Our building was being taken over by a third party. The desolation and emotional heart ache are indescribable. However, one of our shareholders knew about an organization in Harlem that could help. We went there on September 8, 2018 and walked into that office with our hearts broken and walked out filled with hope, a desire to go forward and fight back. PALANTE Harlem has since then been our backbone and the place where we learned that you can in fact fight City Hall, which is what we are doing, under the guidance of PALANTE Harlem. I know that without the guidance and support of PALANTE we will have not found the courage to stand up for our right. PALANTE helped us get a lawyer, meet our elected officials, get press coverage and organize our self to fight City Hall, HPD and the Third Party Transfer agencies. Most importantly they have taught us to build community, share resources and fight for our intergenrational wealth and sweat equity with dignity and respect. They open their doors to the neediest and don’t turn anyone away. This organization deserves many accolades, but I know that the biggest achievement is to see that tenants’ rights are protected and preserved.
Isabel Adon, Board President 1600 Nelson Avenue HDFC

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been an intern here at PALANTE Harlem for a couple of months now and it has turned out to be a life-changing experience. It's where I met my second family whom are people so dedicated and committed in helping so many families from around the city including mine. We take a lot of pride and effort in the work we do and it's one of the best things to be apart of. I was able to experience this through my parents' housing situations which led me to be here. As now being part of the PALANTE family, I've been able to open my eyes more and see miracles happen through the work we do and I learn from everyday. It always a great feeling being continuously told "Thank you for all your help" on a daily basis. \

-Rosely Nunez

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

...From the moment our HDFC fell into the city’s TPT bka City Landgrab - we came across the PALANTE nonprofit group and it has been a tremendous blessing ever since. Elsia and her wonderful staff have gone above and beyond with their tireless efforts and sharing from their wealth of knowledge and resources that go beyond words.
Today, thanks to in great part to the PALANTE staff, we are better prepared and educated on the many rights we have as Shareholders in our continued legal fight.
I am and will always be grateful to PALANTE for helping me and my fellow neighbors fight for our American Dream.

2 Sergio A.

Client Served

Rating: 5

PA’LANTE HARLEM is such a great organization lead by the unique Elsia Vasquez a person dedicated to help the little guy in our Comunity,the one being harrased by slumlords.my personal experience was tiring and very stressful as I had to fight 3 different landlords in as many years.without the help and knowledge is miss Elsia and my lawyer John Gorman I would likely be homeless right now.thanks pa’lante,you are not only helping the community you are the Comunity.

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2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Some unscrupulous landlord took my name of the lease and then he was giving me the run around and took me to housing court claiming that I was not a tenant even though I have been living in the same place for more than 12 years.i did not know I have rights and I coul fight this people back until I got to Pa'lante Harlem offices,not just Elsia and her crew fight with you they also give you knowledge and really help you understand your situation.i am so happy I met them because otherwise I woul be homeless right now.i am in debt with Pa'lante for all they had done for me.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've always wanted to come to New York. Never expected something as great as Pa'lante Harlem. I never intended to work with them. I am learning a lot with Elsia and the other people that work beside her. They are a very serious and determined organization. I love how I can be a part of changing peoples lives with Pa'lante. It is the feeling of helping others that drives me to continue coming to Pa'lante. Its been Two months now and they are just awesome.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

PALANTE is a rare gem that showcases the best of our community through the power of integrity and education. I, first, witnessed the results of their work from afar through the conditions that were addressed for my grandmother, who had been fighting alone for those same results for more than a decade. After a tough time adjusting to adulthood, I was given the opportunity to try something new as an intern at PALANTE. It was then that I realized that the real beauty is not just in fighting landlords. It lies in the empowerment that we create through real unity and community. Now, as a member of the PALANTE family, it's one of the most amazing things to be a part of. Watching a person that feels intimidated and defeated, grow in confidence and strength is a miracle that I get to see and be a part of every day.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante doesn't just help residents being harassed by slumlords they help bring the community together. For example, last year the organization hosted a candidate debate in Harlem. A housing non-profit has never attempted to do something like that before. CEO and owner, Elsia Vasquez understands how important politicians are in solving the problems with housing in NYC and so she made them accessible. Palante is Harlem

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

For me, P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. was an unknown gem nestled in the heart of Harlem. From the moment I walked in as a volunteer I saw a small, tight knit team dedicated to serving the community, fighting for the men and women struggling to house their families in livable, safe places they can call home.

As someone who has found a passion in fighting for social justice and civil rights I knew I was going to remain committed to this organization. During my time at P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. I have seen with my own eyes lives changed, deplorable living conditions fixed, depressed and scared tenants renewed and reinvigorated. I watch as people come in frightened and overwhelmed by their circumstances but after receiving guidance from the staff they leave armed with knowledge and feel empowered to tackle and resolve their situations. P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. changes tenants' lives for the better. Can't say the same for their slumlords though!

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I can earnestly say that Pa'Lante Harlem takes pride in the work that they do. They work with excellence and selflessly. Their workers from the youngest to the eldest provide meticulous work when dealing with a customer. They are loving and caring doing their best to meet the needs of the community. I saw it first hand when my mother became a customer. The dedication and time that each person took to meet her needs, starting from the director Elsia, was priceless. I thank GOD for them and i am happy to have my children serve in this organization.

1 Maria S.4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have known about Pa’lante since 2013 when I first moved to Harlem into one of the Lionel Hampton buildings. I came across some flyers advising tenants to request a rent history from DHCR to find out if the apartments were deregulated illegally. I did it but didn’t see anything that struck me as odd. Six months into my tenancy dealing with numerous apt issues, I was moved into another building with a two year lease. I requested a rent history and found some discrepancies. I heard Pa’lante was hosting seminars at DHCR in Harlem and I went to a few. They were so informative and with the guidance of an attorney, I filed a rent overcharge claim. I know it can take years to get this resolved and hopefully get the apt back to rent stabilized status but it’s so comforting to know that organizations like this exist to educate people about illegal deregulations. I wish them much success at their new location.

1 Gabriel B.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I can't state enough of P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem exceptional work based in Harlem a non-for-profit organization assisting, educating, tenants of their rights and much more. The effort this organization puts forward in resources should be rewarded and made more visible to the community. P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem shows landlords how to be responsible for their property and reminds him/her that tenants DO have rights. I know if this organization was fully funded and was to receive a full-time staff, some landlords would stop their irresponsible behavior all together. Right now P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. is working at full capacity, we need politicians and donors to make this wonderful organization grow to its full potential.

Ms. Vasquez it is an honor and pleasure to continue work together with P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem.

Respectfully,

Gabriel Bencosme
Tenant Association President

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4

Client Served

Rating: 5

P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem is an exceptional harlem based non-for-profit organization assisting, educating, tenants of their rights and much more. The effort this organization puts forward in resources should be rewarded and made more visible to the community. P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem shows landlords how to be responsible for their property and reminds him or her that tenants DO have rights. I know if this organization was fully funded and was to receive a full-time staff, some landlords would stop their irresponsible behavior all together.

Ms. Vasquez it is an honor and pleasure to continue work together with P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem. Your organization has full support of 569 West 150th Street Tenant Association.

Respectfully,

Gabriel Bencosme
Tenant Association President

1 Raybblin V.

Client Served

Rating: 5

P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem is one of the most vital organization to families in our community. It is not an exaggeration to say that THEY SAVE LIVES!

P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem has kept our building from being vacated which would have put over 60 families out on the street. We must continue to support P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem in every way we can.

When we formed our tenants association, we went to P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem because we knew that we were going to get the best logistical, administrative and organizing support. They treated our members with integrity and that empowered us to be successful in our struggle to live with dignity.

http://abc7ny.com/news/exclusive-illegal-gas-lines-found-in-manhattan-and-bronx-apartments/700788/

In May of 2015, ABC Eyewitness News uncovered illegal gas piping in 8 buildings owned by our landlord, ALMA Realty. Stunned that we were living under a ticking time bomb, we reached out to P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem for help. They helped us organize the tenants, and informed us that we are living in a building without a current Certificate of Occupancy.

P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem then guided us in effectively organizing a rent strike that led to a unanimous Supreme Court decision in our favor.

We are forever grateful to P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem for literally saving our lives.

" Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

Sincerely,
Raybblin Vargas
President
600 West 161st Street Tenants Association

COURT DECISIONS
http://nycourts.gov/reporter/3dseries/2018/2018_50396.htm

https://www.hmgdjlaw.com/Major-Cases/GVS-Properties-LLC-v-Raybblin-Vargas-et-al.pdf

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My name is Nana Kwame Anokye Adigun Bomani. I have been an intern at Pa’lante Harlem since November 2017, Pa’lante Harlem has helped me grow so much as an individual. Through the course of these past months since November Pa’lante has been a place where have developed a family, been introduced to a brand new culture, and a new community. The experience of working at Pa’lante has shown me that I want to continue to help people, and Perdue a career working towards social change and social justice.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

There are not enough wonderful words I could say about PA'LANTE. What an amazing, TRUE, non-profit that is actually doing what it sets out to do.

I started working with PA'LANTE when I was fighting a predatory landlord that had purchased my apartment building, as well as 5 others from my previous owner. The immediately started threatening tenants, harassing them, and illegally performing gut renovations of units. I and a group of us had started a tenant organization, learning from what we could from reading online. But then we hit a wall, no traction. When we finally were at our witts end we were introduced to PA'LANTE.

Immediately we got some teeth to our organization. PA'LANTE worked with us, organized us, got us in touch with the right people to really start to fight. They helped us get a press conference organized in front of one of our buildings with all the major networks there. With that press our landlord finally started to listen. From there we were able to also get our landlord on the watch list of the city, effectively putting them to a stop.

Inspired by all the work I now volunteer there every week, and really feel a part of the "family" of this amazing organization. Every single one of the members of our family knows that we are all in this together, and we will always stand side by side no matter what! What a great organization that I am proud to be a part of!

Previous Stories
4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I cannot begin to express how much help PA'LANTE Harlem has been to myself, the people of the community, everyone they deal with. They go above and beyond to help protect tenants rights! They helped organize my tenant association and have gotten me involved with helping out other people in my same situation.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been working as an intern at this organization for a couple of months. I can honestly say that this has been one of the most inspiring and moving experiences that I have had. This organization is deeply committed to enriching the lives of the people within the community through their work. It am left breathless with the amount of support and care that this organization shows it community members. This organization has taught me how to authentically advocate and empower others. As a client, I would feel lucky to have this organization by my side. 5 star organization!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I recently had been locked out of my apartment by the marshall and was completly lost and distraught. I was put in contact with Palante harlem and all i can say is thank god this organization exist. They immediately came in offered legal assistance and saved me from eviction. Elsia Vasquez is true blessing and a true advocate for tenant rights.

5 SaraF

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

It’s Thanksgiving … and well past time for me to thank Elsia and everyone else at P.A.’L.A.N.T.E.

Without Elsia’s super-quick and professional help last summer, I would have lost my apartment.

My part-time jobs had mostly dried up, though not completely and not permanently. HRA had just closed my case because I was making too much to receive public assistance but too little to make rent or receive a one-shot deal. I had already tried everything I knew to do and, in a last-ditch effort, walked straight from the HRA office to P.A.’L.A.N.T.E. I couldn’t afford bus fare. And I’d been served with a Marshal’s Notice.

Elsia had never met me before. But she immediately recognized the direness of my situation. She also recognized that I was capable of stabilizing my finances, given a little help and a little time. She made a call and sent off an email detailing job training I was already scheduled to attend the next week. HRA came through with a one-shot deal. A HomeBase worker called it a miracle. I call Elsia a Miracle Worker.

Since then, I’ve landed a full-time job and am on my way to a better future.

¡Para Adelante! Forward!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This summer I was looking for a job and instead I found a second family. In the little time I have been here, I learned how dedicated Elsia and her organization is to helping those in need. I have seen first-hand what it is like to give your all to the people in our community and it is truly inspiring. I decided to continue working here because I knew that there are changes in our city that needed to be done and I want to help Elsia and Pa'lante reach their daily goal. It is important that everyone knows and hears about this wonderful organization. If you are in need of help, in any way I guarantee that you will not be let down. If you want to help Pa'lante , any small donation would be appreciated. Thanks :)

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

We are the 615 West 150th Street Tenants' Association. We were not making any progress toward home ownership until we were introduced to PA'LANTE Harlem. PA'LANTE gave us the tools and the motivation we needed to accomplish our dream. Because of PA'LANTE we feel closer to our achievement. Through PA'LANTE we have gotten the support of elected officials and other organizations . PA'LANTE is a great help to the community. We are very grateful to be part of the PA'LANTE Family.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've known Elsia since I was very young I was her first assistant this really helped me knowing that people are going through such a big struggle on a daily basis, Because of her our apartment got fixed and even after that we still keep in contact with her she's become a close family friend and now I work in the office with her. Pa'lante is a home away from home. It feels good to know that I'm going to be making sure my community stays here. Gentrification is a huge issue and I'm glad I'm doing my part to eventually stop it.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

En la organizacion, P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Es una excelente organizacion le brinda una gran seguridad a los inquilinos y siempre disponible para resolver tu caso, aparte de que cuenta con un gran personal para atender tu caso. Mi experiensa como voluntario es esta organizacion fue la mejor aprendi muchas cosas y aquiri grandes habilidades. Los invitos a unirse a esta gran familia.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Pa'lante Harlem es una de las organización más determinada para ayudar a los inquilinos y protegerlos de los caseros. Yo era voluntario durante el verano y me sentí parte de la familia con empleados que trabajan duro cada día. Pa'lante Harlem se asegura que los caseros no se aprovechen de los inquilinos y que respeten las leyes. Esta organización merece todo el reconocimiento por sus esfuerzos en asegurar los derechos de los inquilinos. - CarlosT

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hi, my name is Paris. This summer I was interned at Palante Harlem as a data enterer and a video and photo editor. My experience at Palante Harlem was like no other I have had before. Palante Harlem is like a second family, you can seek guidance from Elsia and any of the other employees there. You almost feel at home. Even though the work can be kind of tedious you know that it is all for an extremely important cause. The organization Palante Harlem helps thousands of people within the New York City area they save people from homelessness and unhealthy and unsanitary conditions in their apartments, They also help people whose landlords abuse them; For that, I commend them and hope that they continue to grow as an organization and that they continue to help thousands of more people in the future. I really enjoyed myself at Palante Harlem and I would not hesitate to donate to this organizations' cause in the future when I am rich.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I want to take the time to thank Palante Harlem Elsia is an amazing lady I was living in Brooklyn in horrible conditions with my 5 children mice, rats, and roach infestion...I called everyone that came to mind and all I got was we will call you back...I came across a article by Monica Morales helped another young lady in a similar situation...and Palante helped I was hesitant to call due to be turned down by everyone...I CALLED and Elsia was so great she listened to me cry and break down and she said we are going to help you no one deserves to live in those condintions and she did exactly what she said I never met this wonderful Lady personally and she has done so much for my family we now live in an beautiful 4 bedroom apartment upper west side in beautiful neighborhood with beautiful people...me and my children are forever grateful for her...Palante Harlem is an amazing organization that truly care and I can't thank them enough....

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I voluntered at Planate for a short time but from that small experince I was able to catch the strength of this organization, Elsia Vasquez is a hard working and well informed leader who dedicates her time to working with and helping members of the local community. While being only a young non-profit organization that is challenging the law of New York city for the rights of those that have been neglected and left to fend for themselvs. Elsia has given these very people a tool to fight back againt the neglect and abuse of there landloards. The tenants that Palante represents are majority older citizens of the community and are seen as unable to defend themselvs against a larger entity yet Palante has given these citizens a voice to fight with and that is invaluable. Not only does Palante help older citizens of the community but as well as engaging the youth of the community by employing nearly all of her staff with young adults no older than 21 years of age. This shows that Palante is dedicated to giving back to not only the elders but also the youth covering all memebers of the community and giving invaluable information and oppertunity to all, this is one of the very few still true to the citizens of the community non-profit organizations.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Palante Harlem helped us get organized and form a strong tenants association to fight our predatory landlord.

1 MBell522

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Michaela and I am a single mother of two. My queen is 3 and my king is 1. I moved to the Bronx from Poughkeepsie, NY with my Children's father in February of 2016. It was a domestic violence situation so in June of 2016 I decided to pack up my kids and go into shelter. Two months of being in shelter, I found a job and I was receiving public assistance. I also obtained my housing vouchers and immediately started to search for an apartment without the help of CCS. I found an apartment and went to view it. I was told that all the renovations that needed to be done would be done and the apartment will be inspected. I trusted my worker and DHS to ensure that the apartment was inspected and approved. I was told by my worker that the inspection was completed and the apartment was approved. Then, because it was very cold and I have small babies, the housing specialist at the shelter I was in offered to get the keys to my apartment from the broker and bring them to me at the shelter. He did that, and I immediately left assuming I was on my way to my beautiful home on Christmas Eve. First, the key I was given wasn't even the key to my apartment. Then, when I walked through the unlocked door, I broke down in tears. My apartment looked like a construction site. Old appliances in the kitchen with my new ones, chipping paint, holes in my hollow floors, tools everywhere, nails everywhere, old chairs, no mirror in my bathroom, not even a shower rod! No window gaurds, cords and wires everywhere and the list goes on. I was scared to furnish the place. I called my dad hysterical and he connected me with Palante Harlem. I have never felt so empowered in my entire life. They have been guiding me every step of the way to help me fight this fight that people like me don't usually win. They even talked me into involving the media and speaking out on pix11. Because I honestly felt like nobody would listen. I mean, who am I? But Palante Harlem has changed my whole attitude about fighting for my rights. As a person and a tenant. My situation has continued to improve ever since I was introduced to Palante and every time I speak to them I thank them. I don't think I could ever thank them enough. Because of Palante I feel like I can fight any battle if I just use my resources and say something. To anyone out there that may be in a similar situation, and you are prepared to fight the necessary fight, call Palante Harlem and they will definitely point you in the right direction. I don't thank the mayor, I don't thank the city, I THANK PALANTE

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The work that Palante Harlem provides for the community should be recognized worldwide. A grassroots organization with such a small passionate staff that help so many with so little. This has been an opportunity for me to make a difference in peoples lives for the greater of good and stamp an everlasting smile on their faces. Fully driven by righteousness & empowerment that they don't give you the fish but rather teach you how to fish. This is the motto they live and die by when it comes to nurturing the people in need. -Christopher Padron

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

My friend, Lisa, had a concern. She thought she was being ripped off by her landlord who was trying to redo her lease and raise her rent. Lisa was confused and wondered where and how she could learn the "rules" by which the apartment was governed and what were her rights as a tenant. The lawyer she reached out to would not answer any questions unless she paid him upfront. So I told her about Palante. They took her call right away and began telling her about websites she could visit and about government sites that outline regulations. She was able to do the research herself and felt empowered. Palante did not ask for anything in return. They truly are about empowering the community and teaching people their rights as tenets.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

One day i went to buy a graduation dress for my daughter , who was graduating from kindergarten. When I came home, the apartment had been locked by the Marshal's office. I had previously gone to court for a non -payment. I had the money for the rent , but the Judge told me to hold on to it; since the apartment was in my brother's name. I have lived with my brother for many years. The owners had sent a certified letter to my brother. No notice was given to me. Here, i was now locked out of my apartment. I called the Marshal's office and told to go to court.
I was to was referred by my neighbor to Harlem Pa'Lante. I came here, they got me an attorney , i didn't have to give him anything except my smile. I had the money for the rent , but not for the legal & marshal's fees. I was able to get a " one shot deal" from the city. Now, I am back in my apartment with my 3 children. My apartment is finally being repaired! You see that was why the owner sued me in court; when i started asking for repairs.
when the marshal changed the locks, the broke a very secure lock i had. they changed it with a used lock. Harlem Pa'Lante has even helped me with that. A new lock with two keys! I ham VERY GRATEFUL to Halrem Pa'lante!!!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been with Pa'lante Harlem for quite sometime, and I got to say hands down the best experience I've had. Pa'lante will open the eyes of those who don't see the wrongdoings in our community. Pa'lante will motivate the people in the community to become knowledgeable tenants and know the power of their tenancy rights. Not only would you be doing a good service to society but also to yourself, knowing that you are giving a voice to the voiceless makes you feel almost as you are the protector of NYC's tenants who are continuously harassed by awful landlords that are unfortunately trying to push people out of their residents or shoot up the rent. Overall, Pa'lante Harlem is a wonderful nonprofit organization that continues to provide outstanding service to anyone who is seeking help and continues to spread awareness of the corruption that is plaguing housing and the city's residents.

2 Sam_48

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante is one of the best non-profit business I've ever known . Palante Help people regardless their background and it helps people in a way that makes their life easier. This was an great experience for me and learned a lot from it. We should have more non-profit business like palante.

2 Antonio M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante Harlem is wonderful Organization with a great cause. Palante is the best Non-profit Organization I've ever worked. Palante helps people everyday with their housing problems no matter the situation, Palante will help them. Palante Always gives to the community and never asks for anything in return . Palante was an excellent work experience for me, it helped me grow as a person. Palante is a need for every community, Palante makes sure that no one is abused by their landlord or being exploited by their Landlord. We need an Organization like people to continue what they do because they are necessary for our Community

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante Harlem is a Wonderful organization. It helps a great place for people with questions or worries about their apartments. Palante is one of the best non-profit organization I've seen. The time I spent here made me see the problems people face everyday. Palante has been a wonderful experience that helped me grow as a person. Palante is a place where you can never give but instead make it work. The organization truly helps the tenants fight for their rights.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am enormously grateful to Palante Harlem. As a result of their dedication and expertise our tenants’ association was able to make contact with especially helpful referrals which ultimately resulted in our landlord’s application for an unjustified Modification of Services (MOS) getting denied. The MOS would have have resulted in a significant reduction in services and an increase in costs for all rent-stabilized tenants in our building. The city is a safer place because of what Palante Harlem does every day to help protect tenants from landlord abuse.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been helping at P.A.L.A.N.T.E. Harlem for the last 5 weeks. Elsie and her team are doing a outstanding job in helping Tenants to fight against Landlord injustice (Slum Lords). Their dedication is remarkable! I have witnessed situations which I would have believed exited if not having seen them myself:
1. Senior Citizens being taking out of there Rent Stabilized apartments and being put in smaller apartments with their belongings put in black garbage bags.
2. Senior Citizen laving with no water, no bathroom, and Kitchen for 3 weeks. Being forced to stay in a small bedroom while the Landlord did improvements to the apartment, with the intention of making this person move into another smaller apartment . This elderly women is 91 years old !!
3. I have seen building with major violations;
A. Rusted Staircases painted over.
B. Major water leaks in apartments and in the hallways.
C. Building Roofs ready to sink in , due to no up keep.
D. Bullying Seniors and others into leaving there apartments .
P.A.L.A.N.T.E. stands up to these Landlords and is fighting a tuff battle for Tenants Rights and quality life .

3 Ed win

Client Served

Rating: 5

Saying Pa'Lante Harlem empower the powerless in an understatement. Pa'Lante Harlem culture and philosophy helps tenants feel they are part of a family. Tenants rights are been violated without any regards to the tenants humane living condition or the existing law. I would encourage people to donate to an organization that is helping tenant obtain their dignity and rights. LOVE THE PA'LANTE HARLEM FAMILY. MY GOD BLESS THE TEAM.

Previous Stories
4

Client Served

Rating: 5

Pa'Lante is an organization that deserves much credit. I am given them the maximum stars because I have personally used their services. As I write this comment I am dealing with one of the biggest/worse slumlords in NYC and Pa'Lante has helped, me and my neighbors get organized. We have tenant association thanks to their support and we are ready to work for humane living conditions. Elsia and the team at Pa'Lante are angels. They are truly the epitome of what a non-profit should be. They help the most vulnerable in a City where landlord do as they please.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

exelente Organización que trabaja para acer baler los derechos de los inquilinos. Con dignidad y justicia.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

A small organization with a humongous heart❤️
As a volunteer at PA'LANTE I have been able to see the incredible amount of work the small staff does for the community with very little financial resources. They work long hours with passion, determination, and honesty.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante Harlem deserves all the recognition that it needs. It is a non-profit organization that helps tenants to get their rights for the apartment when the landlord or the super doesn't help them. Volunteering for Palente has been a fun experience that I truly cherish and I'm lucky to have help those in need. -Uncp student

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante Harlem, is an astounding nonprofit organization that goes to extreme lengths to advocate for tenants living in terrible living conditions at the hands of Slum lords.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem is a non-profit organization that helps tenants to get their rights for their apartments that landlords or supervisors won't fix. I come from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, and I came to volunteer with this organization for a life changing experience. I highly recommend Palante for those who are looking for an unforgettable and humble service, their movement is a great message to all tenants who wants to live in a better building and a stable life.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante is a successful non-organization that fights against landlord abuse and tenant exploitation with the help from volunteers from local and long distance areas. Palante Harlem provided volunteer opportunities for college students on their Spring Break from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. I would highly recommend Palante to anyone that is searching to volunteer with a group or individually.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Palante Harlem is a wonderful nonprofit organization. It has helped many people throughout the years that it has been working. I am very grateful to have the opportunity to work with such a great organization. Such an organization like this should be recognized for the great and wonderful work that it does and the many people that greatly benefit from it.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I lead a group of students from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke for an alternative spring break trip. Working with PALANTE Harlem has been life changing. The work they do and the passion they exude is contagious. To see the impact PALANTE is having on the Harlem community is inspiring and I am thankful that our group could be a part of the movement they have start to help tenants against landlord abuse!

2 Ale.Rivera

Volunteer

Rating: 5

P.A.'L.A.N.T.E Harlem is a great organization in which helps tenants again landlord abuse and against tenant exploitation. I am glad to work for P.A.'L.A.N.T.E Harlem because it's a new experience for me and I get to learn a lot of new things.

2 nay1922

Volunteer

Rating: 5

P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem is a great organization because it's for the people! It has help fight and educate the people in the community on their rights. The tenants in my building and I have learned so much from our involvement and are encouraged and motivated to spread the good that P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. has done and continue to do for the community. We are very thankful and grateful for the founder, Elsia Vasquez and all the dedicated and hard work she has done and continue to do!!!!

2

Client Served

Rating: 4

Tengo el honor de hablar sobre la importancia de estar unidos como familia en una organizacion por que antes de estar en una organizacion de inquilinos por anos, NADIE nunca ni landlord, ni manager menos el super nos dieron atencion, y pasamos todas clases de vicisitudes. Muchas veces reclamabamos pero benian, miraban, se hiban y asi quedaba todo. Sin embargo, despues de ser miembro activo de la organizacion P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem nuestra vida como inquilinos a cambiado un 80% .

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

En la organizacion, P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem, me siento muy bien protegida. Pues e recivido muy buena atencion de parte de esta organizacion sin fines de lucros. Los trabajadores siempre tienen una cara sonriente y siempre estan al tanto para ayudar a resolver cualquier problema Los invito a unirse a la familia.

2 rafaelpadron

Client Served

Rating: 5

P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem has been a driving force for tenants rights and equality. My experience with them has been a very positive and an enlightening. In this current environment in which we live , with economic inequality, P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem serves as a tremendous organization to help all communities that would other wise be left out on the perch. I am very appreciative and grateful for all they do us! This organization is and has been a Blessing.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem is an organization that doesn't only help the community with their main purpose (goal) but it also tries to go beyond. I've been part of the family for a while now and i'm very great full for having the opportunity to learn a lot through the workshops we have and the meetings that occur. I'll like to thank the founder; Elsia Vasquez for guiding me through the right way in every step i'm taking. There's so more to this organization than just it's duty, because P.A.'L.A.N.T.E. Harlem isn't simply an organization we are a family.