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Nancy Wackstein quoted in article about David Dinkins

Thursday, October 15, 2015

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio doesn’t keep in touch with former mayors Rudy Giuliani or Michael Bloomberg, and he has clashed with both men. But over the past 25 years, the mayor has frequently talked with the city’s other living ex-mayor, David Dinkins, and was set to preside at a ceremony on Thursday to rename the Municipal Building for the man who served as the city government’s first black chief executive. “We really thought we could change the world, and we did everything we could,” said Nancy Wackstein, a City Hall aide on homelessness. Mr. de Blasio’s friends in the administration said they never expected him to run for mayor. At the time, Mr. de Blasio said he never thought he would, either.
Read the full article here

Mets amazing season benefitted the Citi Community Home Runs charity

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

“This is one time we don’t mind being over budget,” said Ed Skyler, Citi executive vice president and avid Mets fan.

Granderson, ambassador for the Citi Community Home Runs program, will give checks to four area charities — City Harvest, United Neighborhood Houses, USO of Metro New York and New York City’s YMCA — on Monday.

Read the full story here:

United Neighborhood Houses Names Susan Stamler Executive Director

Thursday, September 17, 2015

United Neighborhood Houses Names Susan Stamler Executive Director


New York, September 16, 2015 – United Neighborhood Houses (UNH) today announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Susan Stamler as Executive Director of the organization. Stamler will begin her new position October 26, 2015.

Stamler joins UNH from M+R Strategic Services where she managed a national juvenile justice campaign.  Previously she served as UNH’s Director of Policy & Advocacy from 2001 to 2010.

“Susan has a rare combination of experience and intelligence that will allow her to shape UNH's direction and impact the future in a changing environment. She has the passion that policy and advocacy work requires, understands the complexities of multi-service organizations, and has the respect of our community of Executive Directors, funders, and government officials that will help UNH achieve our goals. Susan promises to be a great leader for UNH and an important champion of the settlement house movement,” said Bryna Sanger, President of UNH’s Board of Directors.

Stamler said there is a direct connection between her recent work on juvenile justice reform and the mission of UNH. “While working to reform state juvenile justice systems, I never strayed far from the settlement house philosophy of the early pioneers. These reformers recognized that society had an interest to protect children and invest in their future. These are the very same arguments that we use today to create essential community services. New York City's resiliency depends on its social infrastructure, and settlement houses are a vital part in helping their neighborhoods not only survive but to thrive.”

“For nearly 100 years, UNH has been appreciated and trusted by its members; valued by its partners; and respected by government, foundations and the media. I will continue to build on those strengths and highlight the importance of UNH's membership as a significant economic engine for our City. With a combined operating budget of more than $700 million and 10,000 staff throughout the boroughs, settlement houses are integral to the quality of life for every New Yorker,” Stamler said.

Stamler takes over for Nancy Wackstein, who will leave UNH after 13 years as Executive Director to help educate the next generation of nonprofit leaders.

“I am thrilled to return to UNH and hope to continue Nancy's legacy as a passionate leader of UNH and strong advocate for the vital work of settlement houses and neighborhood centers,” Stamler said.

Stamler joins UNH with more than 35 years of experience in non-profit advocacy. Stamler began her career with New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG), worked as Director of City Policy at UJA-Federation, Director of Planned Parenthood's Action Fund, Director of Outreach at the Alliance for Consumer Rights and a founder of the New York AIDS Coalition. A Queens College graduate, Stamler was born in Queens and resides in Brooklyn with her husband, Chris Meyer. They have two adult children.


UNH, founded in 1919, is the membership organization of 38 New York City settlement houses and community centers. UNH member agencies comprise of one of the largest human service systems in New York City and provide high quality services, such as child care, after school activities, summer youth employment, meals on wheels and senior centers, at more than 500 sites to more than a half million New Yorkers each year.

CEO Corner: Nancy Wackstein

Wednesday, September 02, 2015
Nancy Wackstein, Executive Director of United Neighborhood Houses, sat down with New York Nonprofit Media for an interview for CEO Corner.

Some excerpts:

"I have extraordinary respect for the job these agencies do in their communities and how difficult it is. These are organizations that are funded typically through a combination of city, state, sometimes federal contracts, private fundraising, and sometimes earned income. Putting all those pieces together to have a functioning organization is really hard."

"I think the most important thing is relationships. You can go to Barnes & Noble or any bookstore and see shelves and shelves of books on leadership. For me, it boils down to respectful relationships with people, doing what you say you are going to do, and building trust."

I am going to go off and continue to care about UNH and settlement houses for the rest of my life – it is in my heart.  - See more at:
"I am going to go off and continue to care about UNH and settlement houses for the rest of my life – it is in my heart."

Check out the video and transcript of the full interview here:

Settlement Houses recognized as NYC Treasure

Wednesday, September 02, 2015
Thanks to a leadership gift from the Louis and Anne Abrons Foundation and generous support from others involved with our settlement house community, Treasures of New York: Settlement Houses is a new, hour-long documentary that will tell the history and ongoing story of New York’s settlement house movement. Treasures of New York is a series that is produced by WNET and airs on Channel 13 in NYC and Channel 21 on Long Island. Depending on funding completion, our hope is that it will air in 2016 on THIRTEEN and WLIW21, and be available for free streaming online after its broadcast premiere.

You can get involved!  Share your stories and pictures on the Treasures of New York: Settlement Houses dedicated program page.  These may be included in the upcoming broadcast; a producer will contact you if they wish to use material you have submitted. Please share about the special times, experiences and people you remember and those new ones that will happen today! Thanks so much, and stay tuned for more information about the show as its development progresses.


Damien Woody makes Final Citi Kids Program a Touchdown

Friday, August 14, 2015

Damien Woody. Photo by: Stacy Podelski/1495 Sports.

Damien Woody with one of the many future leaders from the Citi Kids Program. Photo by: Stacy Podelski/1495 Sports.

Former New York Jets offensive lineman and two-time Super Bowl Champion Damien Woody was at Citi Field today to inspire 140 children from United Neighborhood Houses as a part of the Citi Kids program.

Citi Kids is an educational and motivational community-based initiative for New York City middle and high school students developed by Citi in collaboration with the Mets and the Jackie Robinson Foundation.

Now in its seventh season Citi Kids has served as both an inspirational and educational program that has made an impact on 10,000 kids and counting.

United Neighborhood Houses promotes and strengthens the neighborhood-based, multi-service approach to improving the lives of New Yorkers in need and the communities in which they live. A membership organization rooted in the history and values of the settlement house movement, UNH supports its members through policy development, advocacy and capacity-building activities.

1495 Sports is proud to bring the following photo gallery and video sights and interview with Damien Woody:



Sights from the Citi Kids program featuring SNY’s Michelle Yu and Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholars-that included the story of  Dolapo Sangokoya, who was able to achieve her dream of college thanks to the Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarship:

For a link to the full story, click here!

Damien Woody talks about inspiring UNH kids

Friday, August 14, 2015
Damien Woody, Former Jets player and Superbowl winner, spoke to kids from UNH member agency Queens Community House during a CitiKids event on August 13, 2015. Here's a video from MLB with Woody talking about his message to the kids:

UNH mentioned in story about Damien Woody

Friday, August 14, 2015

Thursday, August 13, Damien Woody spoke to UNH kids from Queens Community House at Citi Field as part of CitiKids. It was mentioned in a story on

But Thursday, Woody was also putting his attentions elsewhere. He was at Citi Field to speak to schoolchildren from United Neighborhood Houses about the importance of education, perseverance and drive. As a father of seven and someone who had to tackle obstacles himself to get to the NFL, he can empathize to some degree.

"I can relate to a lot of these kids because I was that kid at their age," he said. "For me to be able to sit here and be able to talk to them, it's good. Sometimes they hear the message that I said but coming from a different person sometimes it resonates even more."

Nancy Wackstein quoted in Mayor's release about education

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

de Blasio announces gains for NYC students on state exams

“Settlement houses and other community based organizations have worked closely with the de Blasio administration to ramp up their partnership with public schools by offering expanded services such as community schools, mental health services, after-school and early childhood education,” said Nancy Wackstein, Executive Director, United Neighborhood Houses. “We are thrilled to learn that State testing offers evidence that the improvements made in education are already making a positive impact for students. We look forward to continuing to work with the City to ensure every child has the tools and support the need to succeed.”

Read the entire press release here.

Soccer champion Abby Wambach inspires kids in visit to Citi Field

Friday, July 31, 2015

Soccer champion Abby Wambach inspires kids in visit to Citi Field

  By Renee Stoll

Thursday, July 30, 2015 05:13PM


Soccer superstar Abby Wambach paid a special visit to kids in Queens Thursday, just before she threw out the first pitch at the Mets game.

Fresh off the US women's World Cup victory, she gave a motivational speech to dozens of kids from the non-profit group United Neighborhood Houses.

They got the treat of a lifetime when the soccer champion and New York native came to Citi Field to inspire the kids about reaching their goals.

"The one big thing I always want kids to walk away with is, don't ever let somebody tell you you're not good enough. Never, not for one second," Abby said. "If you have a dream if you believe you can do something, go after it."

And these kids have big dreams.

"When I grow up i want to be an NBA player," said 9-year old Gregory Drummond.

"My big dream is to be a part of the WNBA and to accomplish things nobody has accomplished before," said 10-year old Ola Matufofanah.

She may hold world records now, but before the Olympic gold medals, even Abby had her doubts about her own soccer career.

"I didn't know I'd be able to call myself a world champion, or World Cup champion," she said. "I can't just snap my fingers and do something, it takes a long time to get good at it."

Many of these children are considered at risk, and regardless of their age, the idea of working hard in the face of adversity isn't lost on them.

"Some people don't got money and you know it's hard for them to go out and buy food," said 10-year old Ashanna Carty.

"No matter what happens to you, you always have a choice how you respond to it," Abby said.

"If you do something, somebody tries to bring you down, turn those words into big things," said Ola.

"If you have a dream and go after it with everything you've got will you be successful?," Abby asked the kids. The answer was a resounding "Yes!!".

See the full story here: