Homeless Assistance Fund

A public-private initiative to provide services and mental health resources to New Yorkers experiencing homelessness.


In October 2022 the Partnership for New York City launched the Homeless Assistance Fund, a unique public-private initiative with the city and housing nonprofit Breaking Ground’s Connect to Care program.

Connect to Care supplements existing outreach programs with more intensive outreach and trust-building among New York City’s most vulnerable and entrenched homeless population and accelerates getting these individuals into treatment programs and housing. The program reaches those who have been unsheltered the longest, have the most disabling conditions, and are least likely to access housing resources.

Preliminary data shows Connect to Care can help someone experiencing homelessness access a transitional housing placement up to three times faster than standard city contracts.

Funding Opportunities

For funding inquiries contact Jennifer Fine at [email protected]

Download the Q1 2024 data report Download the Year 1 initiative-wide data report

How It Works

The Homeless Assistance Fund has expanded Breaking Ground’s Connect to Care street outreach program with a focus on individuals experiencing street homelessness in Midtown, Lower Manhattan and Downtown Brooklyn. Experienced case workers:

  • Provide direct care outreach, build trust and rapport with unsheltered individuals over time to understand their needs and better connect them to services
  • Develop individualized service plans for each person that includes benefits assistance, connection to harm reduction, detox or substance abuse, connection to mental health and medical care, and housing services
  • Transition homeless and mentally ill individuals into supportive care and housing

Success Stories

The HAF team first contacted JM in January 2023 near St. Bart's church, where he went to panhandle and collect clothing and food. He was also occasionally found sleeping in a nearby ATM vestibule. JM was resistant to housing offers at first but ultimately agreed to try moving inside. He was referred to a church bed program in February 2023, where he stayed each night. JM expressed how much he liked the church bed program and wanted to stay until he could get into his own apartment.

In mid-January, JM viewed an apartment and had an interview for a new building in Queens. As soon as the building processed his paperwork, JM moved into his apartment on March 21, 2024. He is extremely happy in his new home and has called the team to share his excitement.

The outreach team often saw AA in Lower Manhattan; he panhandled near 168 Church Street, a location frequently reported in ticket submissions. AA was open to speaking with the outreach team but reluctant to accept services due to negative experiences in the shelter system. Over the course of a year, the outreach team escorted AA to drop-in centers and then a safe haven facility, coordinated medication management services, and connected him to medical care.

In the winter, the team brought AA to a housing interview and to view a new building in the Bronx, and ultimately to his lease signing in the beginning of March! Now that AA has stable housing, Breaking Ground is working with his onsite team to install grab bars into his bathroom and applying for a home health aide. AA loves to cook and is happy to be back home making his own food. He already has plans for his daughter and grandchildren to visit.

NM has a pacemaker due to frequent heart problems, multiple amputations, and has been diagnosed with severe, persistent mental illness. NM is afraid of the hospital and some providers and often resisted medical care due to his history, making it harder for him to get the care he needed. 

The outreach team worked in conjunction with other Breaking Ground teams to connect NM to consistent medical care, paired him with outreach workers he trusted to escort him to appointments, and ultimately submitted a supportive housing application for him. NM was matched to a housing opening in a Breaking Ground building in January! NM’s unit was outfitted with additions to make it ADA accessible, allowing him to move into his new home on February 8, 2024.

DD reports that he has been homeless for eight years and is frustrated with the housing application process. DD also says that he feels the Breaking Ground team has demonstrated more care about his wellbeing than previous outreach teams. As a result, DD has agreed to work with Breaking Ground to access public benefits and identification materials and find housing.

This effort is supported by charitable contributions of over $8M from more than 60 Partnership member companies.

Participating Companies

In the fall of 2022, as member companies were returning to their offices following a lifting of Covid restrictions, they recognized the urgent need of assistance for unsheltered New Yorkers requiring an array of support services. Wanting to be a part of the solution, these companies funded a special pilot of Breaking Ground’s Connect to Care program in select neighborhood clusters in Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Impact as of May 2024


total contacts with people experiencing homelessness


faster placement in housing compared to city-funded outreach teams


placements in shelters or transitional or permanent housing

“Pfizer appreciates this opportunity to help address homelessness in New York City. As a company founded and headquartered here, we have a deep commitment to the city and the health and wellbeing of its people. Partnerships such as this demonstrate the power of collaboration.”

Albert Bourla, Co-Chair, Partnership for New York City, and Chairman and CEO of Pfizer


“Tishman Speyer is proud to stand with the City of New York, Partnership for New York City, and other business leaders to support this vital initiative. We know that the health, safety and wellbeing of our fellow New Yorkers are key to the city’s future. The Homeless Assistance Fund will ensure more residents get the care they need.”

Rob Speyer, Co-Chair, Partnership for New York City, and President and CEO of Tishman Speyer

Participating Companies

Advance Publication/Condé Nast

Ainslie Foundation

Alex M. Farman-Farmaian

Apollo Global Management

Bank of America



Bloomberg LP


Brookfield Properties

Capital One


Centerbridge Partners


Crown Castle

Cushman & Wakefield, Inc.

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP

Deanna Mulligan, CEO, Purposeful

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP


Empire State Realty Trust


Ernst & Young LLP

Etsy, Inc.

Evercore Foundation


First Republic Bank

Fisher Brothers

FOX News Media & News Corporation


Global Atlantic Financial Group

Goldman Sachs Gives


Hellman & Friedman LLC

Interpublic Group

JPMorgan Chase


Latham & Watkins LLP

Macy's, Inc

Marsh McLennan




Mizuho Americas

Morgan Stanley

Neuberger Berman

New York Life

Newmark & GFP Real Estate

Paramount Group, Inc.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP

Pfizer Inc.


Rockefeller Group

Ropes & Gray

Santander US

Sidley Austin LLP

Silver Lake

Silvercup Studios

Solomon Partners

SS&C Technologies

Take-Two Interactive

The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America

The Related Companies, L.P.

The Rudin Family

The Travelers Companies, Inc.

Tishman Speyer

Trinity Church Wall Street

Vornado Realty Trust

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz

Warburg Pincus

Wells Fargo