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Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project is transitioning to a new Fiscal Host

Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project cannot receive contributions at the moment. This page will be updated with more information once the collective transitions to a new Fiscal Host.

Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project

We provide mutual aid to our neighbors in Ridgewood, Maspeth, Glendale, and Middle Village in the form of food distribution, a community fridge, homeless outreach and eviction defense support.

Contributors


Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project is all of us

Our contributors 504

Thank you for supporting Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project.

Raquel

Admin

Avneesh Sarwate

sponsor

$3,900 USD

Allin Skiba

Homeless Outreach Project

$3,550 USD

Maxwell Auste...

sponsor

$3,200 USD

Dharit Tantiv...

sponsor

$2,380 USD

Incognito

$2,340 USD

Curt Lyon

$2,050 USD

Incognito

$2,025 USD

Incognito

Homeless Outreach Project

$1,950 USD

Izzy Oram-Brown

$1,900 USD

Mark Yoshizumi

Homeless Outreach Project

$1,425 USD

Budget


Transparent and open finances.

-$201.42 USD
Paid
Reimbursement #211174

Storage for FC

Category
Program Housing & Lodging
from Lizzie to Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project
-$290.80 USD
Paid
Reimbursement #211045

Coffee for Tabling ahead of May 19 march

Category
Program Food & Groceries
from Bailey to Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project
-$62.40 USD
Paid
Reimbursement #210875
$
Today’s balance

$11,382.04 USD

Total raised

$93,687.14 USD

Total disbursed

$82,305.10 USD

Estimated annual budget

$10,818.35 USD

Connect


Let’s get the ball rolling!

News from Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project

Updates on our activities and progress.

Update Report - Our Work During the Pandemic

Update Report - Our Work During the PandemicDecember 30, 2022 Note: The Ridgewood Tenants Union created the Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project in March of 2020. The funds collected through the mutual aid...
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Published on January 4, 2023 by Raquel

About


Update Report - Our Work During the Pandemic

December 30, 2022

Note: The Ridgewood Tenants Union created the Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project in March of 2020.  The funds collected through the mutual aid project are used to help meet the material needs of our members and neighbors and are not used for political or legislative lobbying. This report, aside from providing a glimpse into our mutual aid project, is an overview of our overall work which seeks to build tenant power in our part of Queens.

AN OVERVIEW

The Ridgewood Tenants Union is an anti-gentrification, independent, and tenant-led housing rights organization run solely by volunteers that was formed in 2014 with the mission of building tenant power and fighting displacement in a neighborhood long controlled by homeowners and the politicians that advocate for them.  We are NOT a non-profit.  Even though tenants are a majority in the neighborhoods the group works in, which is Ridgewood, Maspeth, Glendale, and Middle Village, there is no strong and organized tenant voice advocating for our right to safe, truly affordable, and stable housing, especially for working class tenants of color, those that are undocumented, and our homeless neighbors.  

The Ridgewood Tenants Union has been filling a long and overdue void, especially during the pandemic.  Our part of Queens is not highly served by non-profit or service organizations that provide services to community members and during the pandemic, many of our neighbors did not have access to immediate support to meet their survival needs.  Due to the lack of service provision in our neighborhood, we created the Ridgewood Mutual Aid Project in March of 2020 at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.  Mutual aid has always been an aspect of our organizing work but with this particular project the group was able to collect monetary donations for the very first time to directly serve the material needs of our neighbors.  

With the mutual aid funds we collected we were able to provide groceries for our neighbors through food distributions, home deliveries, and our community fridge.  We provided small grants during the beginning of the pandemic and organized a winter coat drive in year two of the pandemic.  We purchased and secured COVID 19 masks and test kits that we’ve been distributing since the start of our project.  We were able to do this and much more with the support of over 600 members that joined our mutual aid project and the donations of our neighbors and extended network of supporters.  

This report offers a glimpse into our work during the pandemic and how the generous donations from our friends, neighbors, and our extended network of supporters have been used from March 2020 to the present.


SUPPORTING OUR NEIGHBORS

Our mutual aid project has been trying to fill a need in our neighborhood which is lacking in survival resources.  Many of our neighbors and members lost work during the beginning of the pandemic and many of them continue to face unprecedented survival challenges.  Our group cannot meet the needs of our neighbors alone, but we have been able to do our small part for those in our network and neighbors that have reached out to us.

Grocery Deliveries and Ongoing Support

  • 507 families received groceries through direct grocery deliveries to their homes during year one of the pandemic.  The majority of families seeking support for groceries have been monolingual Spanish speakers with an average of four family members in their household who weren’t eligible for traditional forms of government assistance, meaning unemployment or public benefits such as SNAP.  

  • In 2020 we were able to distribute over 300 hot meals prepared by Friend of a Friend and 50 turkeys through the generous donation of the FridgeGirls.  We were also able to organize three large food distributions in 2020 and one large food distribution in 2021 with our donated funds.  This helped provide groceries to over 1000 families in our neighborhood.

  • In December 2021 we organized a winter resource fair that distributed winter clothing, coats and toys to over 150 families.  We purchased coats with our donated funds and our neighbors donated items as well.

  • In August 2020 our friends with Hungry Monk helped us pick up a used refrigerator in New Jersey which we purchased with donated funds.  With the fridge, we created our Community Fridge Project which we launched in September 2020 and that has helped provide fresh vegetables, canned food, and other nonperishable food items to our neighbors.  We partnered with our friends at St. John’s Bread and Life and received ongoing donations from them and other local sources, as well as purchased groceries for the fridge from our own donated funds. 

  • In May 2020 we launched our Homeless Outreach Project (now our Homeless Organizing Project) when the city shut down the subways at 1am and police started to harass our homeless neighbors out of the stations which many used as a refuge from the cold.  We started to do nightly and weekend outreach to provide our homeless neighbors with necessary survival supplies such as clothing, food, toiletries and referrals to necessary services.  When we saw firsthand how difficult it was for many of the individuals we kept meeting to access these services, we started advocating for better services alongside them.  We’ve been able to work with over 50 individuals.  Unfortunately, several of them have since passed away due to not having a safe and stable home. 

This support continued throughout 2022 and continues to the present day as we strategize on the best ways to support all our neighbors who are in need. We will be able to provide this support until we exhaust our current mutual aid funds.

MUTUAL AID FUNDS

We launched our first ever grassroots crowdfunding campaign through a platform called Chuffed.org in March 2020 and through this campaign we raised a total of $57,980.56.  In July of 2020 we launched our second crowdfunding campaign through another online platform called Open Collective.  Open Collective offers our mutual aid project a fiscal sponsorship which ensures that mutual aid donations can be tax-deductible.  We had also been tracking our initial donations through a public Google sheet to ensure transparency of all our donations--the public document can be found here.  Instead of tracking donations manually through our Google sheet, Open Collective provides us with built in transparency so that everyone can see where donations come from and where they go.  Up to this date, we have received a total of $83,000.68 (before fees) in mutual aid donations. 

Read more on our website: https://www.ridgewoodtenantsunion.org/update/ 

Our team

Raquel

Admin