In this Issue 


CAMBA Gardens Named 'Project of the Year'


Get Ready for a Spring of Support


Volunteers Add Helping Hands in March


'Live Healthy' Launches a New Season of Free Classes  






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CAMBA is a non-profit agency that provides services that connect people with opportunities to enhance their
quality of life.
March 2014

CAMBA Gardens Phase I Named 'Project of the Year'
Photo by Vanni Archive

The Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH) named CAMBA Gardens Phase I its "Project of the Year" on March 28.

Developed by CAMBA Housing Ventures, Inc., CAMBA Gardens is a $66.8 million, 209-unit, LEED Platinum, transit-oriented, affordable and supportive housing development on the Kings County Hospital Center (KCHC) campus in Wingate, Brooklyn.  


"CAMBA is deeply honored to receive this tribute," said Joanne M. Oplustil, President and CEO of CAMBA and CAMBA Housing Ventures. "We are especially grateful to CSH for their visionary 2005 white paper that highlighted the benefits of developing affordable and supportive housing on underutilized surplus hospital property."

She added, "CSH and CAMBA Housing Ventures (CHV) saw an innovative solution in bringing the two sectors together, and CHV worked closely with Kings County Hospital and HHC to create housing on the hospital's surplus land, making this vision a reality and model for the rest of the nation."

CAMBA Gardens represents a new national model for partnerships between public hospitals, non-profit developers, social service providers and community stakeholders. It reused underutilized surplus hospital property, which provided revenue for KCHC and New York City's Health and Hospitals Corporation while providing tenants with access to high-quality preventative healthcare at KCHC.


Comprehensive on-site supportive services are provided by CAMBA.


Read more about CAMBA Gardens and the prestigious award.



A Spring of Support: Let Us Count the Ways...

You'd think that for an organization as large as CAMBA, there'd be at least a few different ways to get involved and show your support. And you'd be right. 
Spring Food Drive 
Going on now, and lasting through April, is our Spring Food Drive, benefiting our emergency food pantry in Flatbush and the 5,000 people who rely on it for food each month. As part of the campaign, we're also running the Harvest Against Hunger Spring Food Drive, to keep our pantry's hydroponic farm stocked with seeds and supplies for vegetables grown right inside our pantry.
Tahari at Saks 
On Thursday, April 10, from 6 to 8:30 pm, join us for a classy evening at Saks Fifth Avenue to celebrate and preview Elie Tahari's 40th Anniversary collection for spring 2014. Cocktails and hors d'oeuvres will be served... and 10% of the night's proceeds benefit CAMBA. RSVP at or 212-940-2946. 
Then in early May, we have back-to-back events: 
Cocktails for Careers 
On Thursday, May 1, from 6 to 10 pm, you can join the CAMBA Junior Board for Cocktails for Careers: an Evening to Support Our Earn and Learn Fund. This will be an evening of food and drink at Piquant in Downtown Brooklyn to help provide valuable summer internships for low-income Brooklyn teens. $25 in advance, $30 at the door (free drink for the first 30 guests). Buy tickets here.
Healthy Way 5k 
And on Sunday, May 4, we'll be out in force in Prospect Park for our 2nd annual Healthy Way 5k Run/Walk. Run with us, walk with us, support a participant, sponsor a client... however you get involved, you'll be helping us serve our 45,000 New Yorkers in need each year. Learn more and register here. (Oh, and bring the kids---this one's a family event). 

Volunteers Add Helping Hands in March  

March was a month for volunteers around CAMBA, with two groups of charitable guest-workers giving our programs a  boost.


For the seventh year running, a group of college students from King University in Bristol, Tennessee, spent their entire spring break helping out at CAMBA sites and offices. The 12 volunteers took on a range of tasks, from helping shelter residents move into permanent housing to cleaning hallways and filing papers... to making and serving a hydroponic-farm-fresh salad to food pantry clients (pictured above). By the end of the week, our Tennessee volunteers had clocked almost 500 hours(!) around the agency.


Later in the month, Employees of ZenithOptimedia spent a day with our Respite Bed Program, where they organized supplies and prepared linens for homeless clients who spend nights at our Respite Bed shelters. The four marketing professionals were taking part in Zenith Optimedia's "Zenith Gives Back," when employees spend one working day volunteering at a local charity.


"If you don't volunteer, you take for granted all the opportunities you're always afforded," said Shaquana Ford, a Negotiator at ZenithOptimedia. "I want to help people."


CAMBA thanks all the volunteers who gave their time to further our work! 


'Live Healthy' Launches a New Season of Free Classes

The jaunty beat of Afro-Caribbean drums and exuberant dancing kicked off a new year of free community exercise and health education programs at CAMBA Beacon 271, co-sponsored by EmblemHealth, the Greater Brooklyn Health Coalition (GBHC) and CAMBA.

About 50 area residents gathered at the Bedford-Stuyvesant Beacon to sip healthy smoothies, enjoy Afro-Caribbean dance exercises and get a taste of upcoming free Live Healthy classes.

After dropping 30 pounds last year, participant Denise Bethea said she is eager to be part of this year's program. "Everyone is very friendly," she says, "Everyone encourages on another."

New York City Councilmember Robert Corneghy Jr. was on hand to usher in Live Healthy 2014, joined by Dr. Bob Lee of WBLS and leaders from Balanta Fitness, Total Body Conditioning and Chef Dawn Skeete of Jamaica Grill/Farm Foods.

"Your health should not be determined by the zip code where you reside, yet there are huge health disparities that are based on the communities in which people live," said Marjorie Momplaisir-Ellis, Senior Program Director at GBHC/CAMBA. We hope this collaboration will help ignite people's drive to live healthier lives by providing them access to affordable activities and more opportunities in their neighborhoods."

View and register for upcoming Live Healthy 2014 classes at