Hand-Knitted Scarves Bring Warmth To BFL Programs

February 23, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Beautiful hand-knitted scarves were donated to Barrier Free Living's (BFL) programs for survivors of domestic violence with disabilities again this February. Bryant Park Corp. donated 150 scarves which were distributed to all programs, including those working with kids. "We are so grateful for this wonderful donation every winter! The scarves are truly works of art and are made with such care," says Scott Hess, BFL Director of Communication & Development. Read about… read more

Sweet Collaboration Brightens BFL Programs

February 23, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
A new collaboration, working with the non-profit For Goodness Cakes, is bringing joy and sweets to Barrier Free Living's programs for survivors of domestic violence with disabilities. This February several program events benefitted from delicious donated cupcakes, including BFL's Freedom House domestic violence shelter.  Freedom House celebrated Black History month by honoring Mr. Garett Morgan (1877-1963) who invented the three position traffic light signal. The kids made… read more

Donors Bring Joy To BFL Survivors On Valentine’s Day

February 12, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Generous donors brought light and joy to Barrier Free Living's (BFL) programs for survivors of domestic violence with disabilities this Valentine's Day. The Valentine Community Project delivered beautiful gift bags to our programs (photo above) for another year (donating since 2021!). Additionally, the Corporate Pero Latinos (partnering with Wine on Wheels) are also donating items to the programs this Valentine's season. "We are so grateful to… read more

Visual Artist Phes Creates Dazzling Murals At Bronx Program

January 26, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
A Brazilian-American artist from Harlem, NYC Jon Souza AKA Phes (Instagram: @mcmaniphes) brought his abundant talent to Barrier Free Living’s supportive housing program in the Bronx this winter, creating two dynamic murals in the lobbies of the Family and Singles' buildings. “Growing Together (family side) is a mural created in collaboration with the tenants of BFL." says Phes. "The elements of the piece reflect some of the work done in our… read more

Staff Spotlight: Anthony Harris

January 22, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Anthony Harris has joined the Barrier Free Living team as a Behavioral Health Coordinator (LMSW) at the agency's supportive housing program in the Bronx. Anthony’s prior experience includes working with the Department of Health shelter system, with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) as a project manage manager for work site wellness, and serving as a social worker with correctional health services for those with mental health needs… read more

Barrier Free Living Names Diana Turner As Chief Program Officer

January 19, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEScott Hess [email protected] BARRIER FREE LIVING NAMES DIANA TURNER AS CHIEF PROGRAM OFFICER NEW YORK, NY, January 18, 2024  – Barrier Free Living (BFL) has announced the promotion of  Diana Turner to the position of Chief Program Officer. In this new capacity Turner will be responsible for strengthening and developing programming with the goal of enhancing the quality of life for survivors with disabilities. Turner began with BFL in 2019 as the Program… read more

Barrier Free Living Raises The Roof

January 11, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living (BFL) drew supporters, survivors and staff to its Raise the Roof fundraiser held at New York City's Museum of the City of New York  on December 11, 2024. The event raised $36,000 toward making Barrier Free Living's Freedom House domestic violence shelter an environmentally safe and economically efficient shelter by  installing a solar roof in 2024. Fundraising continues into 2024 with an… read more

BFL Featured On NYC Bus Kiosks

January 5, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
BFL's was featured on NYC Bus Kiosks as part of the Mayor's Office to ENDGBV 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign this winter. "We are so grateful we were included. The city-wide exposure allowed us to reach and alert so many people about the services we provide to survivors of domestic violence with disabilities," says Scott Hess, BFL Director of Communication & Development. The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based… read more

Mural Artist Transforms Bronx Program’s Lobby

January 5, 2024 Uncategorized 0 Comments
A Brazilian-American artist from Harlem, NYC Jon Souza AKA Phes brought his abundant talent to Barrier Free Living's supportive housing program in the Bronx this winter, creating a dynamic mural in the lobby. Phes is a visual artist, emcee, producer, and educator born and raised in New York who was "inspired by Hip Hop from an early age and started writing graffiti and rhymes… read more

Dazzling Murals At Freedom House Domestic Violence Shelter By Volunteer Darlene

November 14, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
  When 2023 volunteer Darlene asked what she might contribute to Barrier Free Living (BFL), the concept of bold, brilliant murals was not on the wish list. A few months later (after learning about Darlene's incredible talent) BFL's Freedom House domestic violence shelter has two new murals (with a third underway!) The murals brighten a kid's game room and a basement area, both… read more

Barrier Free Living CEO Cynthia Amodeo Part Of Special Victims Division Advisory Council

October 25, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living CEO Cynthia Amodeo has been invited to be a member of the newly announced Special Victims Division Advisory Council ("the Advisory Council"). Manhattan District Attorney Alvin L. Bragg, Jr., announced the creation of the Advisory Council to allow the District Attorney and his staff to gain input from a large variety of external stakeholders on a quarterly basis. Read the press release.… read more

Freedom House Celebrates Paul B. Feuerstein Family Center 

October 20, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living's Freedom House domestic violence shelter officially renamed the program's Family Center the Paul B. Feuerstein Family Center (photo above) on October 13, in honor of the agency's founder. "As the father of three and the grandfather of five, I've always had a special place in my heart for children," says Paul. "At Barrier Free Living, that translated into the children of Freedom House.  We were one of the first… read more

October Is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October 2, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
During October's Domestic Violence Awareness month Barrier Free Living programs will be engaged in activities like our Occupational Therapy team's DV support group where survivors created t-shirts with powerful messages. On “NYC Go Purple Day” (October 20th) local buildings and landmarks across the city light up in purple, and New Yorkers are encouraged to wear purple to show support for survivors. Learn about Domestic Violence Awareness month events.… read more

Barrier Free Living Presents At New York State Office of Victim Services Conference Aug. 22-24

August 22, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living CEO Cynthia Amodeo will present Serving Survivors with Disabilities at the New York State Office of Victim Services conference Redefining Victim Services in an Age of Uncertainty on August 22 – 24 in Albany, NY. Also attending from the BFL team are Erika Calderon Secret Garden Program Director, and De'Jon Buie Chief Program Officer. who will present Countering the Dual Oppression of Racism an Ableism. Learn more.  ⁠… read more

BFL Vision Board Workshop At Freedom House Domestic Violence Shelter

July 21, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
This July, the occupational therapy team at Barrier Free Living (BFL) presented a special "Vision Board" workshop for residents and staff at BFL's Freedom House domestic violence shelter. The goal was to "Reflect on your passions and goals and then express them to create a vision board or dream board which is a mix of photos, affirmations, patterns and colors that represent what you hope to achieve in the future." Participants shared visions boards… read more

Intertwine Arts At Disability Unite Festival

July 5, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Intertwine Arts celebrates Disability Pride month with an in-person weaving event July 16 in New York City's Central Park. The event is being held during the Disability Unite Festival, to commemorate the 33rd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law on July 26, 1990. Every July Disability Pride Month is celebrated to commemorate the passage of… read more

Barrier Free Living Celebrates LGBTQIA+ Pride!

June 22, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
    Barrier Free Living celebrated LGBTQIA+ Pride at its programs this week, holding creative community events. At the supportive housing program in the Bronx, tenants and staff created tie-dye t-shirts and art inspired by Pride. At BFL's Freedom House and Secret Garden programs an origami workshop celebrating Pride… read more

Secret Garden Hosts Meditative Mindfulness Training

June 9, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living's (BFL) Secret Garden domestic violence program hosted a Meditative Mindfulness training on June 9 led by Mushim Patricia Ikeda . The training was open to the agency staff. BFL's Secret Garden program provides counseling and case management for survivors of domestic violence or sexual assault who identify as disabled and/or D/deaf. Voice Hotline: (212) 533-4358 Videophone Hotline 646-807-4020 Learn more. … read more

A Fair Shake For Youth At Freedom House

June 8, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Zuzu and Luna (photos above) brought joy and healing to the kids at Barrier Free Living's Freedom House domestic violence shelter this spring. A Fair Shake for Youth provided its four-week program which guides kids "to learn about effective communication, relationship building, and respect by working with dogs." A Fair Shake for Youth "uses the power of registered therapy dogs to help middle school youth build a foundation of empathy… read more

Brooklyn Public Library Presents On Culture Pass At Freedom House

June 5, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Brendan Crain (photo above), Manager, NYC Culture Pass, Brooklyn Public Library, presented an overview of the Culture Pass program at Barrier Free Living's Freedom House domestic violence shelter June 5, 2023. Culture Pass is a collaborative program coordinated by Brooklyn Public Library, Queens Public Library and The New York Public Library. If you have a library card from the Brooklyn Public Library, Queens… read more

Barrier Free Living CEO Cynthia Amodeo Featured In CBS News Story

June 2, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living CEO Cynthia Amodeo was featured in a CBS News story about domestic violence in the Bronx on June 1, 2023. View the story here.  The BFL team works with survivors of domestic violence with disabilities at our fully accessible Freedom House domestic violence shelter, our award winning Secret Garden domestic violence counseling program, and our BFL Apartments offering permanent homes with support services to survivors with disabilities and their families. Learn more and how to support… read more

BFL Bronx Supportive Housing Tenant Art & Gardens

June 1, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Tenants at Barrier Free Living's Supportive Housing Program in the Bronx explored spring & early summer themes in an Occupational Therapy (OT) led art workshop, as well as digging into the rooftop summer garden. The rooftop tenant garden will be home for vegetables and flowers through the season and the OT team will host healthy cooking workshops using items grown. The creative healing art workshops are part of ongoing OT work… read more

BFL Team At Day Without Human Services Rally

May 30, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
The Barrier Free Living team participated in the May 25 Day Without Human Services rally. Over 6,000 people turned out for the rally and 100 organizations participated. The Human Services Council shares: "whether it was shutting down services, sending staff to the rally, sending emails and making phone calls to the Mayor and City Council, or tweeting up a storm on social media. We were a formidable force. Together, we demonstrated… read more

Barrier Free Living Celebrates LGBTQIA+ Pride Month

May 24, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
A Pride banner created at BFL in 2019. Barrier Free Living (BFL) will celebrate June's LGBTQIA+ Pride month with a host of activities at its programs for survivors of domestic violence with disabilities. BFL's supportive housing program in the Bronx will host a Pride related two-part "Sip & Paint/Tie Dye Workshop." for tenants. The team shares that "participants will be provided with the option of painting individual canvases or dyeing… read more

BFL Family Day & Kids’ Summer Fun Campaign Launches

May 18, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living (BFL) launched its Family Day Kids' Sumer Fun campaign this May. The campaign supports BFL's work with survivors of domestic violence with disabilities and their families, and funds raised will be used for learning center led events with kids, from a trip to the zoo to the splish splash water park. Funds also support future family day community gatherings. The campaign is built on the concept of a family being… read more

Yoga Returns To BFL With Exhale to Inhale

May 17, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Regular collaborator Exhale to Inhale  returns with on demand yoga for the Barrier Free Living team and survivors at our shelter and programs. Exhale to Inhale was "Founded in honor of survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, Exhale to Inhale provides a powerful, body-based resource for healing from trauma."… read more

BFL Team Denim Day Events

April 26, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Barrier Free Living team members participated in Denim Day (April 26) 2023 attending demonstrations in New York City and by unveiling a quilt made by staff and survivors at its shelter and programs. Denim Day is an annual campaign held in April in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Team members also attended an April 26 tabling event, sponsored by the… read more

Former Freedom House Resident Honored with New Destiny Resilience Award

April 25, 2023 Uncategorized 0 Comments
Photo from L to R: Tiffany El-Amin, Program Director at The Kira, Diane Mullins, Resilience Award Recipient, Nicole Branca, Executive Director of New Destiny Housing. Photo above and below: Ben Gabbe Photography Former Freedom House resident Diane Mullins received the Resilience Award at the New Destiny Housing 2023 benefit: Building Homes, Building Hope. Accepting the award at the April 20 benefit, Ms. Mullins thanked Freedom House saying "Freedom House connected me to… read more