COVID-19 PROGRAM UPDATES

As a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, our agency has had to make some temporary changes to our programs and procedures. Please see below for updates from each of our sites and programs on how they will be functioning in the interim. We will continue to send updates as things change.

MUC Headquarters, 1081 Broadway
Our main headquarters is open, but we are not accepting any walk-in clients. The building is open to staff and deliveries only. Tenants may drop off rent payments at the dropbox in the lobby at 1081 Broadway if they are unable to mail them. All inquiries should be made via phone at (716) 893-7222.

ESL/GED Program
Our ESL and GED classes are suspended until April 20, per the Buffalo Public Schools mandate. Please keep an eye on our website for updates on this timeline.

SNAP Program
Our SNAP workforce development program is suspended until further notice.

Senior Services Program
Our senior services staff are no longer doing home visits at this time. Our senior services program is still working with clients via phone and can be reached at (716) 893-7222 x207 Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Housing & Community Development Programs
All City of Buffalo housing assistance program inquiries – including the Emergency Repair program, HomeGrown program, and Down Payment & Closing Cost Assistance program – are being referred to call the Old First Ward Community Association at 716-856-8613 x103.

Housing staff are still supporting our receivership tenants over the phone at (716) 893-7222 x214. All tenants should be paying rent via mail to the Matt Urban Center, 1081 Broadway, Buffalo NY 14212 if possible, or at the dropbox in the lobby at 1081 Broadway if they are unable to mail them. Tenants at our apartment buildings can continue to pay rent via the dropbox at their respective buildings.

Weatherization Program
Our weatherization staff are still working Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. We ask that all new applicants request information by phone at (716) 893-7222 x218 or via email at jparylo@urbanctr.org or by mail to the Matt Urban Center, 1081 Broadway, Buffalo NY 14212.

Matt Urban Hope Center, 385 Paderewski Drive
The Matt Urban Hope Center is currently closed and all services are suspended until further notice.

Hope House Shelter, 586 Genesee Street

Our Hope House shelter is still accepting referrals, but our capacity is currently at 50% to maintain a safe distance between residents. We are only accepting 25 women and children at this time. We will accept referrals as families depart through the Department of Social Services and 2-1-1. All questions regarding the shelter can be directed to our Hope Services director at (917) 717-1400.

T.J. Dulski Community Center, 129 Lewis Street

The T.J. Dulski Center is currently closed to the public. I n light of the local school closures, all youth program operations have ceased until further notice.

Our food pantry at T.J. Dulski will be open every other week on Wednesdays from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The next date the pantry will be open is Wednesday, April 1.

Permanent Supportive Housing Programs

Our permanent supportive housing programs are suspending all home visits and will continue to support our clients over the phone. Our staff can be reached at (716) 893-7222, x530.

HELP Buffalo I & II, 368 & 384 Broadway
No visitors are permitted at our HELP Buffalo apartments at this time. Tenants can continue to work with their case managers via phone.

Hope Gardens, 58 Oberlin Avenue
No visitors are permitted at our Hope Gardens apartments at this time. All group activities and congregate dining have been suspended. Food will be delivered to tenants’ apartments. Tenants can continue to work with their case managers on site and via phone.

Questions? Reach out to us at (716) 893-7222 or via email at info@urbanctr.org.

We hope all of our clients, partners, supporters and community members stay safe and healthy during this time!

Permanent Supportive Housing Celebrates Black History Month

 

Our permanent supportive housing department recently celebrated Black History Month with an event at Hope Gardens! Clients and staff made decorations, sang, read poetry, played trivia, enjoyed a spoken word performance by Monique Murphy, and an African drums performance by Marvin Harris. Our Hope Gardens cook made an amazing traditional African soul food dinner, too!

 

Black History Month Celebration

The Matt Urban Hope Center will host a Black History Month celebration event, featuring a cultural meal and a presentation with facts about famous African American men and women and their accomplishments. The event will take place on Thursday, February 20 from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the Urban Diner at 385 Paderewski Drive. For more information, contact Cherise Carson at (716) 893-7222 x329 or ccarson@urbanctr.org.

Re-Pack the Bag Community Resource Fair

Join the Matt Urban Center and BlueCross BlueShield of WNY for a community resource event featuring a variety of vendors and a backpack giveaway for youth. Event runs from 1:00-4:00 p.m. at the Matt Urban Hope Center, 385 Paderewski Drive. For more information, contact Cherise Carson at (716) 893-7222 x329 or ccarson@urbanctr.org.

Employment Opportunity: Housing First Case Managers

Now Hiring: Housing First Case Managers

Job Description: The Housing First Case Manager will be tasked with assisting homeless clients in securing safe housing, performing thorough assessments of client’s history, and providing linkages to medical and community supports.  

Click the link above for full listing. Please submit cover letter and resume to our Director of Permanent Supportive Housing, Kadie Skulski, at kskulski@urbanctr.org.

City of Buffalo Annual Action Plan Public Meeting

The City of Buffalo will host a community meeting to seek input from residents on their five-year consolidated plan and their annual action plan. The meeting will take place at the Matt Urban Center’s main building at 1081 Broadway, third floor on February 11 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Those unable to attend this meeting can give input at pop-up events taking place on February 4 at the Broadway Market (10:30-11:30 a.m.) and the Northland Workforce Training Center (12:00-1:00 p.m.).

For more information, visit the City of Buffalo Strategic Planning website here.

Amazon BUF5 Donates Winter Clothing to Hope Center

We’d like to say a huge THANK YOU to our friends at the Amazon.com BUF5 site for hosting an employee-driven winter clothing drive on our behalf. They dropped off their donations to our Hope Center last Friday, and the results were amazing: 50 winter hats, 50 pairs of new underwear, 35 pairs of gloves, 9 winter coats, 3 pairs of winter boots, 52 pairs of socks, and 3 boxes of women’s and kid’s winter clothing!

Thank you to the awesome crew at Amazon for partnering with us and helping keep our clients warm this winter!

MUC Homeless Outreach Team In the News

Our hardworking Homeless Outreach team’s efforts earned some well-deserved media recognition this month!

On January 22, Mayor Byron Brown and officials from Norstar Development announced that demolition would commence on the long vacant Shoreline Apartments complex on Niagara Street. Our Homeless Outreach team was tasked with working with local police to ensure the safety of individuals who might be staying in these buildings and getting them connected to the services they need. They began sweeps prior to demolition starting, and will continue them weekly until the process is completed this summer. Read the full story here.

On January 28, The Buffalo News commemorated the one-year anniversary of Larry Bierl’s death due to exposure with an article summarizing his impact on the Williamsville community, the pervasiveness of homelessness throughout our region (not just in the city), and how agencies like the Matt Urban Center and our partners are providing support to those living on the streets. The article quoted our Homeless Outreach Team lead, Skylar Diamond, in discussing local agencies’ response to Mr. Bierl’s death and how efforts have evolved in the past year. “We’ve definitely started working on positive changes in Larry’s honor,” Diamond said.  Read the full story here.

Wellness Goal Setting Workshop at Jericho Road Community Health Center

Looking to set and reach some new health goals in 2020? Our neighbors at Jericho Road Community Health Center are hosting a FREE goal setting workshop on Saturday, Jan. 18 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at their Medically Oriented Gym at 1021 Broadway. Their staff will help you come up with a road map for success with attainable steps to achieve your health and wellness goals. Go check it out and get motivated!

Amazon Hosts Winter Clothing Drive to Benefit MUC

Our friends at Amazon are generously hosting a winter clothing drive to support clients at our Hope Center and Hope House Shelter. They are currently collecting gently used or new winter apparel such as gloves, hats, coats and boots.

Those interested in donating can find dropboxes at the Amazon (BUF5) location at 4201 Walden Avenue in Lancaster, our main headquarters at 1081 Broadway, Buffalo, or our Hope Center at 385 Paderewski Drive, Buffalo.

Donations are being accepted through January 10, 2020!