My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for Palante Harlem Inc, New York, NY, USA
One day, more than a decade ago, I returned to my office after lunch, to find someone in the conference room, waiting for me. Elsia Vasques was that person. She was surrounded by folders full of repairs needed in 3 buildings on West 146 Street. Elsia wanted to know how she can help these tenants. At the time, I was working for H.P.D. I always said whenever somebody walks into a government office for help, my responsibility to the public is always to provide it. If the answers were not readily available, I would do my best to find them. The seed was planted with those 3 buildings. It grew to a "Grassroots " movement, encompassing more buildings.
Palante Harlem faced adversity from other community groups who portend to help tenants, government officials and community leaders. Elsia was not deterred. The challenges were welcomed with help from tenants, volunteers and youth groups, including my grandaughter.
Repairs, rent overcharge and disparity, harassment, discrimination, threats by owners are what tenants are facing and what Palante Harlem is addressing. Elsia's tenacity is what has been moving Palante Harlem forward to face these issues.
The pandemic is no exception to Palante Harlem's work. Elsia has organized food donations and deliveries, and voter registration. She has been working arduously from home to help tenants facing eviction. I am proud to pull up my sleeves to work alongside Elsia.