We've come a long way in the past 25 years. From a small organization founded by a group of friends who wanted to take action against serious social issues, we've grown to help New Yorkers in every borough. Here are a few memorable moments over the past 25 years.
- 1987 - New York Cares is founded - giving people in the city an easy way to volunteer.
- In the beginning, we only had 50 project partners - and only 15% were outside Manhattan. Today, 40% of our original partners still work with us.
- 1989 - We orient 60 Team Leaders and solidify our "team-based" model. Just two years later, in 1991, the team-based model is adopted in other cities.
- 1988-1989 - We had a total of 463 projects in 4 areas: Children, Elderly, Health, and Homelessness. Today, we average 1,600 projects per month.
- 1989 - The first annual Coat Drive is held. Mayor David Dinkins kicks off the event by donating a coat.
- 1992 - First New York Cares Day is held. 2,000 volunteers clear 3 million square feet of parkland, painted more than 100 rooms in homeless and community facilities, refurbish playgrounds and libraries in 23 schools, and more.
- 1993 - First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton joins volunteers at a tutoring project.
- 1996 - New York Cares partners with Jersey Cares to collect and distribute more than 80,000 coats.
- 1997 - New York Cares participates in the President's Summit for America's Future, and receives praise for being a model volunteer program.
- 2001 - In response to 9/11, New York Cares mobilizes New Yorkers in disaster response. Lasting partnerships are created with the American Red Cross and the New York City Office of Emergency Management.
- 2002 - Youth Service Clubs program is launched, and is designed to engage youth in volunteer service.
- 2003 - Volunteers can sign up for projects on our website for the first time.
- 2005 - We collect our 1 millionth coat.
- 2009 - We are awarded the prize for Overall Excellence in Management by the New York Times Nonprofit Excellence Awards.
- 2012 - We orient more volunteers and complete more projects than ever before.
We can't wait to see what the next 25 years bring! Take the 25 Challenge to help us kick the year off right.
Take your own picture with our Birthday Card, and post it on our Facebook page.