Partnerships in Service to the People of the Bronx and Beyond

October 6, 2021, 6-10pm

Dear Friends and Community Partners:

Please join us on October 6, 2021 for VIP Community Services’ Annual Gala Celebration where we will come together with friends and partners to celebrate the people of the Bronx and surrounding communities. Our theme, Celebrating the Community in Health Ways, speaks to our commitment to providing critical services, including comprehensive medical and behavioral health services, to vulnerable and at-risk Bronx residents for the past 47 years and highlights our response to the multiple challenges of 2020. We are proud to honor Dr. Susan Beane, Vice President and Executive Medical Director of Healthfirst, a Bronx native; present the VIP Community Builder Award to Bronx Borough President, Ruben Diaz, Jr.; and bestow the VIP Political Impact Award on Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark.

While news with respect to COVID-19 has become increasingly more hopeful, the burden of the pandemic in New York City fell disproportionately on residents of the Bronx. VIP has stepped up and stepped in by, among other things, providing vaccines at our facilities, in the community and directly to home-bound seniors, as well as by pivoting to telehealth services to provide safe alternatives to care. Our plans for the near future include expansion of shelter services and a much-needed dental clinic.

Your support of our Annual Gala on October 6 helps to ensure VIP’s continued ability to offer critical services to ensure that under-resourced communities receive the care they deserve, regardless of ability to pay. Please consider serving as a sponsor, purchasing an ad, buying tickets, or making a financial contribution in support of our programs. To participate, you can click on Register Now below.


Debbian Fletcher-Blake

Register Now


  • Susan Beane, M.D.
    Susan Beane, M.D.
    Vice President and Executive Medical Director

  • Ruben Diaz Jr.
    Ruben Diaz Jr.
    Bronx Borough President

  • Darcel D. Clark
    Darcel D. Clark
    Bronx County District Attorney

Honoring the Legacy of Donald L. Ashkenase

VIP Community Services lost a dear friend earlier this year. Don Ashkenase was a staunch advocate for improving health care for disenfranchised and under-resourced communities. He was a greatly respected leader and hospital administrator for many decades and a tireless champion of primary care. VIP is proud to honor this legacy.

Read More

We’re grateful for the support of our Host and Development Committee members! Thank you for making this celebration possible:

Host Committee

  • Don Ashkenase – Member
  • Norris Clark – Member
  • Priyank Patel, PharmD – Member
  • Errol Pierre – Member
  • Silvia Ronda – Member

Development Committee

  • Amanda Parsons – Board Chair
  • Salvatore Gogliormella – Chair
  • Yves Filius – Member
  • Dennis Murphy – Member
  • Lilliam Perez – Member
  • Sara Schacter-Erenburg – Member

VIP Continues to Make an Impact

  • VIP delivered critical services throughout the pandemic; our doors never closed.
  • VIP expanded its health services to provide COVID-19 vaccines and tests in response to the high infection and death rates in the Bronx, from its headquarters on 176th Street, within its housing and shelter programs, and in homes, schools, food pantries, drug courts and other community settings. VIP worked in partnership with Bronx Rising to provide vaccinations for people in the community including those who are homebound (featured in NY Times 4-23-2021).
  • VIP rapidly pivoted to provide telehealth services and continues to offer care remotely to those unable to come in person or who prefer remote care. Over 6,000 patients received hybrid services (in-person and/or via telehealth) since the start of the pandemic (from March 2020 to May 2021).
  • The pandemic also exacerbated the opioid epidemic: VIP continued to provide addiction treatment services, and in 2020 we served 257 clients in our in-patient residences and over 1,500 patients in our outpatient medication supported recovery program.
  • We delivered care to nearly 3,000 patients in our Health Services, Mental Wellness, and Addiction Services in 2020, and we provided over 43,000 outpatient visits.
  • In addition, 400 people received job training and 250 were placed in jobs last year. Recently, fifty businesses participated in VIP’s annual job fair.
  • As part of our ongoing community involvement, VIP joined with a local school to develop a new mural and partnered with the NYPD top hold our annual Night Out as part of recovery month; we were honored to be recognized by Castle Hill Little League in the Bronx in May 2021.