December 2020 – PAT Meeting #27

PAT Meeting #27 12/04/2020



  • 6 UB Backbone Staff (Kassa Belay, Danielle Augustine, Dionne Grayman, David Harrington, Athenia Rodney, Briona Clark)

  •  17 PAT Members

  •  13 FAB members


  • Share updates about ongoing projects

  • Early Intervention Ambassador prep

  • Pandemic recovery in Brownsville

Opening Reflection

  • The PAT was asked: Who is your hero this year?

    • Answers included: Black women, BLM organizers, Athenia Rodney, Mutual Aid Groups, Our youth, Kamala Harris, Joe Biden, The FAB, the Room to Grow team, Riseboro Community Partnership, our mothers, pediatricians, healthcare workers, our children, Dr. Fauci, and HBCUs, our colleagues

  • Heroes of New York: Congratulations Athenia!

    • The Robin Hood Heroes Award has been awarded to Athenia Rodney, who will be featured in Robin Hood’s nationally broadcasted year end fundraiser

  • Robin Hood Heroes video clip link here:

News and Updates

  • Review of last month’s PAT Meeting – November 2020

    • We reviewed and refined the Community Cares project outline

    • We reviewed Brownsville area enrollment and attendance data to explore how early childhood education has been impacted by the pandemic

  • Review of last month’s FAB Meeting – November 2020

    • We reviewed UB’s second Participatory Budgeting project

      • A Small Business Support Grant of $50k plus business coaching

      • The FAB began developing criteria and guiding questions for business grantee selection

    • FAB participated in final round interviews with top EI Ambassador candidates and UB has made offer based on group vote results

  • FAB Participatory Budgeting Home Delivery

    • This project was proposed by FAB member David Alexis and approved by the FAB and UB Backbone to provide home-delivery of food and goods to Brownsville area residents

    • So far 4 successful at home deliveries have been completed with PPE

    • A total of 1680 boxes were received

    • Week 1: 356 delivered to homes and balance donated

    • Week 2: 417 delivered to homes and balance donated

    • Week 3: 420 delivered to homes; waitlist 8

    • Week 4: 420 delivered to homes; waitlist 4

  • Family Co-op Session II

    • Families have gathered virtually every Saturday at 11am and 1pm

    • 30 Families have registered for Session II including 10 new families, 16 families are currently on our waiting list

    • Each session is 8 weeks, Session II ending on February 13

      • Session III: February 27 – April 24

      • Session IV: May 1 – June 19

    • Registration for Session II will open in mid-January

  • Early Intervention Ambassador

    • Job Overview: UB’s Early Intervention Ambassador will begin in January ‘21 as the go-to person for EI in Brownsville.

    • The EI Ambassador will:

      • Educate families to reduce stigma about EI

      • Guide families through the EI referral Process

      • Liaise between families and service providers to support referrals and evaluations

    • Hiring Process: UB implemented a revamped hiring process inclusive of the FAB and FAB hiring sub-committee to select who would fill this new position

      • Stages:

  1. Initial Application

  2. Application Review

  3. Phone Interviews with top 4 candidates

  4. Request and review work samples from top 3 candidates

  5. Large group interviews of top 3 candidates – entire FAB invited

  6. Final candidate selection

      • Target start date: January 4th

    • PAT role:

      • If your program:

        •  Refers to EI and is worried about client follow through

        • Would like to refer to EI

        • Would like support to increase referral and follow up rates

      • UB wants to arrange informational meetings in early January to introduce PAT Members and others to the EI Ambassador directly

      • UB would like to know:

        • What challenges in the referral and evaluation stages should the EI Ambassador be aware of?

      • What is going well with EI referrals and evaluations?

      • Who is interested in informational interviews?

        • Consider who the Ambassador could be in touch with from your team, organization, professional network, or client list

      • Answers included:

        • C Seth Lamar “At PO2, our Community Resource Specialist refers our families to needed community resources so we are just starting to learn about EI services”

        • Dawn Fine – “From foster care perspective I believe the challenges were lack of parental consent and lack of communication from Providers with agency staff”

        • Digna Layne “I haven’t referred yet.  I will reach out to my prevention team and share” and said she would make the connection to case managers or supervisors

        • Robin Smith – “EI referrals have been going surprisingly well, but that said I believe it is critical in most cases to have an intermediary facilitating the process.”

        • Stephanie Ludwig “Clients have reported that the level of evaluation is less than quality in a virtual medium.  Clients report that they felt that they were unfairly denied services”

        • Sue Dougan “My biggest challenge was connection. Connecting the parent to the SC because many parents were so overwhelmed with school for the kids at home and taking care of small children and loss of jobs”

  • Planning for Pandemic Recovery

    • Questions in preparation for the next Leadership Council

      • What were City agency gaps during the pandemic?

      • What should recovery look like on the part of City agencies in relation to families and social service providers?

    • Padlets Exercise

      • Virtual stickies on virtual chart paper

      • The group was given 10 minutes to share their thoughts about and answer each question for the subcategories below.

      • Round 1: Gaps

        • Where did city agencies make preventable or correctable missteps that led to service, funding, and information gaps that negatively affected providers and residents as the pandemic progressed in 2020?

        • link:

      • Subcategories

        •  NYC Test and Trace

        •  Healthcare

        •  Internet Access and Wifi Devices

        • Covid Guidance and Communication

        •  Early Childhood Education and Daycare

        •  Housing and Shelter

        •  Food Access

        •  Public Benefits

        •  Business Support

        • The overarching themes to answers were based in lack of or poor communication, too little support, and too little consideration for accessibility

      • Round 2: Pandemic Recovery

        • What should City agencies be doing to prepare Brownsville-based providers and residents for a successful recovery from the pandemic?


        • Themes include leveraging local infrastructure such as local non-profits and community groups such as UB’s Family Advisory Board and Provider Action Team or Community Boards to amplify important communication especially regarding public health awareness, vaccination outreach, support for parents of children in remote learning, improving virtual curriculum, the economics of food access, community and mutual aid groups, grants, the displacement of children without homes,

Next Steps

  • Register for EI ambassador informational interviews

    • Sarah Robsinon – Riseboro Community Partnership

    • Dawn Fine Grant- Graham

  • Send Questions to UB for FAB

    • What don’t you know about info-service gaps during the pandemic or about the recovery ahead that you would like to ask the FAB/residents?

    • Answers:

    • What type of activities and learning support is most needed for your time at home with your children?

    • What is the most accessible way for residents to receive information?

    • What are the ways that are most helpful for receiving this support? through tv, text, in person delivery, etc?

    • What programs/supports have occurred during the pandemic that you would like to continue during and after the recovery period?


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