About

The East Harlem Community Alliance is a consortium of over 100 nonprofits, businesses, religious organizations and government agencies working together to enhance the vitality and well-being of East Harlem.

The Alliance undertakes joint projects and activities designed to strengthen the economic base of East Harlem through improving the community’s knowledge about and access to local products and services. The Alliance also serves as a forum through which member organizations can connect with one another, share information, and expand their involvement in the East Harlem community.

Chair:  David Nocenti, Union Settlement


The Alliance currently has over 150 members and is focusing on the following four initiatives:

Buy East Harlem

Co-Chairs: Jo Ivey Boufford, New York Academy of Medicine and Jessamyn Rodriguez, Hot Bread Kitchen.

Members of the Alliance collectively spend tens of millions of dollars on goods and services every year, but only a very small percentage of that purchasing comes from within East Harlem.  Products and services are purchased from outside of the East Harlem community simply because many organizations–businesses, nonprofits, and government agencies alike–are unaware that the same goods and services are available locally at competitive prices.  The Alliance has created a searchable database of East Harlem businesses to match interested buyers with qualified vendors. The benefit is twofold: East Harlem organizations can save money by reducing their purchasing costs while supporting local businesses, helping achieve the Alliance goal of increased spending in the community.

Hire East Harlem 

Co-Chairs: Philip Weinberg, Strive International & Brad Beckstrom, Mount Sinai

Many residents of East Harlem are unemployed or underemployed; finding work is often difficult, regardless of educational attainment and additional qualifications.  Collectively, Alliance members employ thousands of individuals and have scores of available job openings at any given time.  The Alliance aims to help East Harlem residents find jobs in their own community and to provide Alliance members and other East Harlem organizations with high-quality candidates to fill their positions.

The Hire committee’s core initiative is the East Harlem Talent Network.  The EHTN builds relationships with employers and provides them with sustainable employment solutions; the vast majority of these employers are based in the East Harlem community.  Local job-seekers working with the EHTN can receive a comprehensive range of services, including resume development, skills training, and interview preparation that improve their chances of success.  They then apply to positions at the EHTN’s partners that suit their interests and qualifications. Employers save time and resources that they would otherwise need to devote to finding and screening candidates, and East Harlem residents can receive competitive salaries while working close to home.

Serve East Harlem

Co-Chairs: Carmen Vasquez, 1199 Housing Corporation, Mary Cavanaugh, Silberman School of Social Work and Ny Whitaker.

East Harlem is home to a large number of nonprofits that offer a host of services, including childcare, after-school programs, legal representation, rehabilitation, high school equivalency classes, senior services, and so much more.  The Serve committee aims to address a perceived gap between the range of services offered in the East Harlem and the number of community members who use them.  Many East Harlem residents go to other parts of the city for services that are fully available in their own neighborhood. Consequently, the Serve East Harlem initiative acts to both improve service coordination among local Alliance nonprofits and to ensure that their clients know about and have access to community-based services.

If you or your clients need to find services in the East Harlem area, please visit HITE to use their searchable service database.

Promote East Harlem

Co-Chairs: Walter Roberts, Hope Community, Inc & Sara Gatanas, Urban Garden Center

East Harlem is a wonderful neighborhood with great restaurants, renowned cultural institutions, vibrant small businesses and a host of other attractions, but that is not well known outside the community. The Alliance is undertaking efforts to promote East Harlem as a great place to visit, eat, shop, work and live.