District Council 9 Donates $25,000 In Emergency Relief Gift Cards To Families In Areas Most Affected By COVID-19

District Council 9 donates $25,000 in emergency relief gift cards to families living in Queens through the NYC Kids RISE Save for College Program

Queens, NY – May 6, 2020– District Council 9 and the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) are donating $25,000 in emergency relief to elementary school families  participating in the NYC Kids RISE Save for College Program. Many of these families live in areas of Queens that have been most affected by COVID-19, including parts of Jackson Heights, East Elmhurst and Corona. The cash relief helps families buy food, pay immediate bills or support childcare costs as they adjust to remote learning. 

To date, NYC Kids RISE has raised a total of $400,000 to provide $150 emergency disaster cash relief gift cards to more than 2,500 families enrolled in the Save for College Program. This represents approximately 25% of all kindergarten, first-grade, and second-grade families in public schools across School District 30 in Queens. District Council 9’s contribution will provide emergency cash support to more than 160 families at 11 elementary schools across three zip codes within the school district: 11368, 11373, and 11372. Other supporters of NYC Kids RISE’s emergency cash relief initiative include the Gray Foundation, Robin Hood, Amalgamated Bank, and FIS.

“District Council 9 represents over 2,200 members and their families from Queens, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to give back to this area during this troubling time,” said Joseph Azzopardi, BM/ST of District Council 9. “In addition to seeing the highest number of COVID-19 cases, Queens is home to a number of families who have been deemed essential workers and are putting themselves at risk every day to go to work and provide for their loved ones. DC 9 wanted to show our appreciation for their hard work, acknowledge their struggles and help them as much as possible during this pandemic.”

“Especially at this time, it is critical that we invest directly in families – particularly the essential workers and communities who have been hardest hit by this crisis. This contribution from DC 9 is a prime example of the incredible investment in families that we have seen across communities in this time of crisis. We are so grateful for District Council 9 and its membership for their support and partnership,” said Dana Zucker, Chair of NYC Kids RISE and Executive Director of the Gray Foundation. 

“We are seeing an outpouring of support for our most vulnerable communities. New York City is resilient, and we always come together to get through tough times. DC 9 and NYC Kids RISE are providing important resources for families in Queens and we are thankful for their leadership and community-focused efforts during this time,” said New York City Councilman Francisco Moya.

The NYC Kids RISE Save for College Program is a universal, community-driven wealth-building platform that provides families, schools, and communities with a way to work together to save for their children’s futures. It’s a scholarship and savings program designed to make college and career training more accessible and achievable for all NYC public school students—regardless of their family’s income or immigration status—starting with all kindergartners in School District 30 in Queens. 

About DC 9

District Council 9 is a chapter of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, an organization of painters, decorators, wall coverers, drywall finishers, sign painters, metal polishers, bridge & structural steel painters, civil service painters, lead abatement workers, glaziers & architectural metal glassworkers, paint makers and allied trades. The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades is dedicated to securing and improving wages, benefits, and overall working conditions for its members.

For more information on DC 9’s continuing efforts to provide pathways to the middle class for New York’s residents visit or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About NYC Kids RISE

NYC Kids RISE is a nonprofit organization working to expand economic opportunity and equity by providing families, schools, and communities with a way to work together to save for their children’s education. Building on the dreams and expectations that families have for their children’s futures, NYC Kids RISE aims to make attending and graduating from college and career training more achievable for all NYC public school students—regardless of where they come from or how much their families have in the bank.


Thomas Meara | Email: [email protected] | Phone: (718) 309-3506

Carolina Valencia, NYC Kids RISE | [email protected]; 718-806-7872

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