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Courtesy of NYC Kids RISE
A non-profit that helps 10,000 school children save for college is providing emergency cash relief for families in District 30.

In an effort to provide immediate relief for elementary school families in School District 30, which includes some of the hardest-hit neighborhoods from the COVID-19 pandemic, NYC Kids RISE — in partnership with the Gray Foundation and Robin Hood — is distributing $150 in emergency cash disaster relief support to 1,500 kindergarten, first grade, and second grade families in the NYC Kids RISE Save for College program.

The $150 cash disaster relief gift cards, provided at no additional cost by Amalgamated Bank and FIS, can be used for nearly any expense including food, utilities, cleaning supplies, or internet access to facilitate remote learning.

Due to limited resources and high need across the District 30 community, NYC Kids RISE randomly selected 1,500 Save for College Program participating families to have the first chance to receive a $150 emergency cash disaster relief gift card. The first 1,000 of those families were selected from more than 10,000 families enrolled in the program, through the support of a $150,000 grant from the Gray Foundation.

Additionally, with the support of a $75,000 grant from the Robin Hood Relief Fund, NYC Kids RISE randomly selected another 500 families who attend schools in thereof the zip codes in District 30 (11372, 11368, and 11369) that have the highest number of COVID-19 cases of all zip codes in New York City. These three zip codes represent the portion of District 30 within the neighborhoods of Jackson Heights, East Elmhurst, and Corona.

“NYC Kids RISE is grateful for the support of the Gray Foundation, Robin Hood, and Amalgamated Bank in making this emergency cash relief available to families in School District 30 neighborhoods, some of the hardest hit in our city,” NYC Kids RISE Executive Director Debra-Ellen Glickstein said. “We hope that these funds will provide some immediate relief to families. We are continuing to work to identify additional financial supports for our families and other ways to partner with our community to weather this crisis together.”

To receive a card, families who were selected must submit a short form to NYC Kids RISE to confirm their contact information and self-report that they have a financial need for this card. Families who have been selected but do not have a financial need can decline the card, and another participating family will be randomly selected.

The emergency cash disaster relief comes in the form of a Mastercard gift card and is not subject to taxation, nor do they require a social security number or bank account to use.

NYC Kids RISE was founded to promote economic opportunity and equity for the city’s public school students by enabling families, schools, and communities to work together to save for their children’s futures through the Save for College Program. The program includes more than 10,000 K-2 families, 39 elementary schools, and numerous community organizations across District 30, one of the most diverse school districts in the country.

NYC Kids RISE is working to leverage this network to address some of the immediate economic challenges facing these communities.

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