Special Projects Fund

Grantee Name

Community Health Action of Staten Island, Inc. / CHASI

Funding Area

Special Projects Fund

Publication Date

August 2016

Grant Amount


Grant Date:

January 2014 – April 2015

The one-year anniversary of the Hurricane Sandy disaster was a particularly vulnerable period for some disaster survivors.

It was a time when people who had suffered loss and trauma were most likely to experience trigger events, which can contribute to the emergence or re-emergence of conditions such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and alcohol and substance use. NYHealth awarded the Community Health Action of Staten Island (CHASI) a grant to help identify residents of impacted communities on Staten Island who may be developing serious mental health and/or substance use conditions and connect them to appropriate and timely health care and mental health services.

Outcomes and Lessons Learned

  • Deployed a mobile health unit three to four times a week to communities on the East Shore area where registered nurses and counselors conducted assessments and screenings to identify health conditions and barriers to care;
  • Worked with residents to link them to needed care and services, including health care and mental health care services, and conducted follow-up outreach;
  • Provided crisis counseling, health education, reminders for appointments, and advocacy and social services, including helping residents enroll in health insurance and secure Supplemental Nutrition Food Assistance Program benefits.

Through this project, CHASI was able to reach a community that historically held reservations about accepting social services and outside help. Early on in the project, it became evident that a large population of people were disconnected from adequate and appropriate medical care well before the storm. Prior to Hurricane Sandy, many individuals and families had gone long periods without primary care and mental health services, as well as social services that they were eligible for. CHASI’s model of community outreach was presented and accepted as one of the main models of community outreach for the Staten Island Performing Provider System, the borough’s only Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) program Performing Provider System.

Co-Funding and Additional Funds Leveraged: CHASI secured additional funding from the Superstorm Sandy Social Services Block Grant from New York State ($931,952), the Staten Island Foundation/American Red Cross ($235,000), and the New York Women’s Foundation ($120,000) to continue their ongoing efforts to provide free health screenings and education, referrals, and social services assistance.