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Best of the Web: Community Information

Community Information Search

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This Google Custom Search indexes the full text of over 400 websites of city agencies and nonprofit organizations that provide services to residents in our communities. Librarians add sites to the Custom Search related to the topics below. The emphasis is on resources in the boroughs served by the NYPL—The Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island.

  • Support groups in a number of different states that assist those affected by the September 11th attacks.
  • Hospital Audiences, Inc. provides access to the arts to culturally isolated New Yorkers. HAI service recipients include people with mental and physical disabilities, developmentally disabled persons, bed-confined / wheelchair-users, visually and hearing-impaired individuals, the homeless, the frail elderly, youth at risk, participants in substance abuse programs, persons with HIV/AIDS, and individuals in correctional facilities.
  • The MTA's door-to-door paratransit service for people with disabilities.
  • Access-A-Ride is a shared ride, door-to-door paratransit service for people with disabilities. Access-A-Ride provides transportation for people who are unable to use public bus or subway service for some or all of their trips. MTA New York City Transit administers Access-A-Ride private carriers under contract to NYC Transit provide service.
  • NYCHA is committed to providing housing for people with disabilities. Answers to frequently asked questions regarding accessible housing can be found here.
  • Information about the ACT
  • Offers special testing with extended time and in alternative formats at specially arranged times for people with disabilities.
  • This list contains the telephone numbers and Internet addresses of federal agencies and other organizations that provide information about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and informal guidance in understanding and complying with different provisions of the ADA.
  • The Key Bridge Foundation for Education and Research has worked since 1994 with the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to administer a mediation program to settle complaints under Title II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.
  • The New York State Affordable Housing Directory (AHD) is a resource designed to assist you in locating affordable rental housing in the State of New York.
  • The New York City Department for the Aging's Alzheimer's & Long Term Care Unit provides assistance in developing a plan of care, referral to community services and care options, and will also assist with case consultations. Educational sessions and trainings are available to the public, senior groups, and community-based organizations.
  • Resources for those with Alzheimer's disease, caregivers, care professionals, and the general public are available, as well as information about chapter activities.
  • Information about Alzheimer's disease with an emphasis on New York area resources.
  • A service of the National Institute on Aging, this site offers information about Alzheimer's disease, including clinical trials, and resources for caregivers.
  • Information from the National Library of Medicine's Medline Plus about Alzheimer's disease.
  • Founded in 1952 under the auspices of the Catholic Church, ACIM offers free, expert assistance on immigration matters, filing of petitions, applications for citizenship, information on green cards, lottery registration, and student visas.
  • Programs include free breast cancer and free prostate cancer screenings. Some information is available in languages other than English, including Spanish, Italian, and French.
  • Provides prevention and rehabilitation programs for at-risk youth and young offenders in East Harlem and the Lower East Side.
  • Information on how to apply for a reduced-fare MetroCard.
  • Information on how to apply for a reduced-fare MetroCard.
  • Information for new drivers, drivers from other states or nations, drivers of motorcycles, also how to schedule a road test, how to get a non-driver ID card and more.
  • Information on requesting birth certificates as well as how to make corrections to these documents.
  • Information on requesting death certificates as well as how to make corrections to these documents.
  • Application for a dog license. Instructions available in Spanish.
  • A nonprofit leadership organization created to help unite New York Citys diverse Asian American communities by providing community services and identifying critical needs of Asian Americans. The Federation offers management, financial, and technical assistance to 35 member agencies and other emerging organizations that directly provide health and human services to the public.
  • AAFE offers information on the following: advocacy & community education, affordable housing developments, homeownership, small business assistance, and social & legal services.
  • Links to local and national resources on assisted living and nursing homes.
  • From the Mayor's Office to Combat Domestic Violence, a listing of services to immigrants who are the victims of domestic violence. Services include shelter and legal assistance, prenatal care, and hotlines. Call 1-800-621-HOPE (4673) for help in over 150 languages.
  • Includes information on election dates and candidates, voter registration statistics by borough, and links to related sites such as the League of Women Voters.
  • Includes voter registration and election statistics by county and links to federal and state election laws.
  • Back issues of Body Positive magazine available in English from October 1996 to the present, in Spanish (SIDAahora) from October 2001 to the present.
  • Hours and days of service for branches of the Brooklyn Public Library
  • Bus maps for all five boroughs of New York City
  • CancerCare is a national non-profit organization that provides free professional help to people with all cancers through counseling, education, information and referral, and direct financial assistance. Website is also available in Spanish.
  • Information from the National Library of Medicine's Medline Plus that is specifically geared to caregivers.
  • The Center Against Domestic Violence operates shelters to house and feed women and children who are homeless because of domestic violence. In addition, they provide supportive services, including counseling and children's programs, to battered women and children. A 24-hour hotline is available at 718-439-1000.
  • Learn about the Center for Court Innovation's work on judicial policy and governmental reform. The Center is a non-profit think tank that helps courts and criminal justice agencies aid victims, reduce crime and improve public trust in justice.
  • Current cumulative Checklist of Official Publications of the State of New York. Also has monthly checklists from 1997-present, as well as annual cumulative editions from mid-1989 through 2003.
  • A non-partisan group, Citizens Union publishes a Voter Directory which lists and describes candidates in local and citywide races. (Citizens Union does indicate "preferred" candidates.)
  • Compiled by the NYPL Office of Community Outreach Services, this list includes both NYPL and web resources. Topics include: reasons to become a US citizen, the citizenship application process, questions and quizzes that may be asked during the citizenship exam, associations and non-profit immigrant organizations, frequently asked questions, and links to more information about English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes and adult literacy classes.
  • The Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF) is an advocacy organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of Asian American children in New York City.
  • The Coalition for the Homeless Resource Guide provides comprehensive information about more than 2,000 services for homeless and low-income New Yorkersfrom shelter to housing, from soup kitchens to job training programs.
  • From the NYC Office of Emergency Management
  • Designed to relay information about missing or abducted children via the Internet, Code Amber complements the Amber Alert system in use in many states. Current and previous Amber Alerts are listed.
  • Information about SAT I, SAT II: Subject Tests, PSAT/NMSQT, AP, and CLEP
  • A guide to reentry resources in Ulster County published by the Restorative Justice Group of the Social Action Committee Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Catskills.
  • List of Community Boards by borough, and police precincts, sorted by Community Board provided by the Mayor's Community Assistance Unit.
  • There is a Community Gazette for each of New York's 51 City Council districts. They are put together by concerned neighbors, posting ideas about their community, alerting residents of forthcoming events, and reporting problems in the neighborhood such as potholes and broken traffic lights. The gazettes also feature repostings of major news stories about the area from the commercial press and announcements from local officials.
  • Community health profiles for 42 NYC neighborhood areas from the Office of Surveillance and Epidemiology, NYC Dept. of Health. Search by zip code available.
  • This guide published by the New York City Department of Homeless Services includes information about various City and community-based services. Agencies and organizations that offer assistance or referrals for food, clothing, childcare, healthcare, education, employment, and obtaining public benefits like Medicare and food stamps are listed.
  • NYC organizations that offer access to Community Voice Mail. CVM works to empower people in crisis and transition by distributing free, personalized 24-hour voice mail access nationwide.
  • Spanish language version of Funding Your Education, a guide to financial aid provided by the federal government. Includes costs of education, eligibility requirements for application for financial aid, deadlines, and information on other college-based financial assistance programs.
  • Information in Spanish from the American College of Physicians Foundation about how to stay healthy while living in a shelter.
  • Offers non-credit computer classes for beginners and experienced users who need synthetic speech, large print, and braille adaptive technology.
  • Established in 1978, the Computer Center for Visually Impaired People (CCVIP) at Baruch College, offers a range of non-credit computer classes in a college environment for beginners and experienced users. The Center provides information and training on assistive computer technology for professionals and the business community, and conducts research to explore innovative ways of using the computer to improve the quality of life for visually impaired people.
  • The New York Public Library's guide for formerly incarcerated people to information and services in New York City. Includes chapters on employment, education, housing, benefits, health, counseling & family services, addiction and legal services. Updated annually.
  • A private not-for-profit agency committed to enriching the lives of all workers, their families, and their communities through both traditional and web-based Education, economic development, and empowerment programs locally, nationally, and globally.

  • Publications from the New York State Consumer Protection Board. Titles include: Consumer Tips for Online Shopping, A Consumer Guide to Purchasing Life Insurance, Choosing and Using Credit Cards, A Consumer Guide to Preventing Identity Theft. Some available in Spanish and Chinese.
  • The financial aid application service of the College Board
  • The Day Care Council provides information on center-based child care, infant/toddler programs, after-school and Head Start programs, and summer camps. In addition they provide early childhood training and workshops, information on child care regulations and licensing, and technical assistance for child care providers. Information about child care subsidies and vouchers as well as nanny services is also available. Call 212-206-7818 for more information (Spanish assistance available).
  • From the New York State Dept. of Motor Vehicles, a listing of Accident Prevention (defensive driving) Course Providers for the Point and Insurance Reduction Program.
  • AARP's Driver Safety Program is designed for drivers aged 50 and over. Classes are offered nationwide, search for one near you.
  • Listing of services provided to those affected by the September 11th attacks. All listed agencies have received funding from the American Red Cross.
  • The list of providers includes those organizations approved by the State Education Department as providers of the training in the identification and reporting of child abuse and maltreatment.

  • Outlines the proper and improper ways of dialoging with people who have a variety of disabilities. Includes organization list and their websites, publications list, and types of signage.
  • Links to additional resources for people with disabilities, as well as general information about different disabilities.
  • A comprehensive online resource specifically designed to provide people with disabilities, their families, employers, service providers, and other community members with access to disability-related information and programs available across the government on numerous subjects, including civil rights, education, employment, housing, health, income support, technology, transportation, and community life.

  • Directory of institutions that provide distance education courses provided through the Internet or mail. Includes an index of subjects offered by institutions.
  • Download the entire Domestic Violence Handbook (published by the NYS Coalition Against Domestic Violence) or link directly to whatever section within the handbook interests you most. Topics include: program lists by county, what the police can do for you, what to expect in court, and getting help from the Dept. of Social Services.
  • A list of links to local and national domestic violence resources.
  • Information about a variety of tests, including SAT, CLEP, GRE, and GMAT
  • Provides various programs assisting children who have a parent incarcerated.
  • Non-profit group offering legal clinics, tenant workshops, housing advocacy programs. Special services include emergency legal assistance for families with children facing eviction and an elder advocacy legal aid program.
  • Provided by the U.S. Administration on Aging, Eldercare Locator is a nationwide toll-free service that helps older adults and their caregivers find local services for seniors.
  • General and specific requirements for becoming a naturalized US citizen. Includes sections on naturalization requirements and knowledge of English language, US history, and government (with a self-test).
  • The EIIC assists Irish immigrants in obtaining bank accounts, driver's licenses, housing, medical insurance, education, and protection under the law. In addition they help with visa and green card applications, as well as doing job training and job placement.
  • Links to emergency and disaster preparedness resources.
  • A non-profit social service organization, dedicated to improving the quality of life of people with epilepsy and their families. Program services are available to residents of New York City and Westchester County.
  • On-line registration and information on these tests, AP,CLEP,GMAT,GRE,PRAXIS, SAT etc.
  • Apply for federal financial aid online
  • Forms in English and Spanish distributed to the public at all local branches.
  • Information and services for caregivers of those with chronic, disabling health conditions.
  • From the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration's National Hurricane Center
  • Information about identity theft from the Federal Trade Commission. Includes what to do if you suspect you have been a victim of identity theft.
  • FindLaw for the Public is designed to help find solutions to legal issues by providing access to lawyers and legal information. Search by topic (e.g., accidents & injuries, bankruptcy & debt) or search the directory of lawyers.
  • Information and services from the US government in Spanish.
  • Links to local food pantries.
  • Information about home electrical service from Con Edison including energy and special services, rates and billing, products and programs, and safety tips. Site is available in English and Spanish.
  • Assists prisoners and people who have been incarcerated in a number of different areas, including education, job search skills and assistance, family programs, crisis intervention and more.
  • The following organizations and attorneys provide free legal services and/or referrals for such services to indigent individuals in immigration removal proceedings, pursuant to 8 CFR ?3.61. Some of these organizations may also charge a nominal fee for legal services to certain low income individuals.
  • The following organizations and attorneys provide free legal services and/or referrals for such services to indigent individuals in immigration removal proceedings, pursuant to 8 CFR ?3.61. Some of these organizations may also charge a nominal fee for legal services to certain low income individuals.
  • Links to lists of food pantries in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Additional information about food and nutrition programs, as well as free breakfasts for children.
  • FRIAs mission includes seeing that nursing home residents receive prompt, high quality and compassionate care, as well as advocating for long-term health care for all New Yorkers in the least institutionalized setting possible. FRIA helps relatives become effective advocates through a telephone hotline, publications, organizing and assisting family councils within nursing homes, and training workshops for family members and professionals.
  • Guide to financial aid provided by the federal government. Includes costs of education, eligibility requirements for application for financial aid, deadlines, and information on other college-based financial assistance programs.
  • Information as well as numerous services available to people living with HIV/AIDS. Site is also available in Spanish.

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