Record Turnout for Comunilife’s 22nd Anniversary Corporate Breakfast

On October 28, 2011, a record 315 business, civic, educational and community leaders joined Comunilife’s Board of Directors and staff at its 22nd Anniversary Corporate Breakfast, to celebrate the achievements of Life is Precious™, a program that reduces suicide among Latina adolescents.

During the Breakfast, Comunilife honored five individuals whose professional lives have impacted the agency, its mission, and the clients it serves. Corazon Awards were given out to David Barr, the Executive Vice President at Gates Capital Corp; Ivette Fernandez, Director of Community Affairs, Corporate Diversity at Newscorps; and Rei Perez, Vice President/Community Development Officer at Citi. For the first time, Community Impact Awards were presented to NYC HRA Commissioner Robert Doar and NYC Council Member Julissa Ferreras. Commissioner Doar and HRA provide Comunilife with $14 million in funding annually to provide housing and supportive services to adults with HIV/AIDS. Council Member Ferreras, chair of the Council’s Women’s Issues committee, helped secure a $100,000 grant from the City for Life is Precious™. Also present were Assemblyman Felix Ortiz and Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito. Audrey Puente, Chief Meteorologist at WWORTV/9, emceed the Breakfast.

Dr. Rosa M. Gil, Comunilife’s founder, president and CEO said in her remarks that for “22 years we have worked to reduce disparities in housing, health, mental health and social services for Hispanics and other diverse populations. We have much to show for it. We have developed 1,300 affordable and supportive housing units in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan for our most vulnerable populations –those with mental illness, HIV/AIDS and other chronic illnesses.  Our comprehensive array of services –health, social services, behavioral health and care coordination- enable these individuals achieve self-sufficiency and independence while remaining in their communities.”

In addition to the awards presentation, guests heard moving statements from Nivia Dones, a mother of a Life is Precious™ teen, and Natalie, one of the adolescents. Ms. Dones spoke about how Life is Precious™ is turning her daughter’s life around.  Natalie gave testimony about Life is Precious™ and the program’s wellness initiatives.

A Cookbook with healthy recipes written by the participants was presented to each guest at the Breakfast.