From early on in her childhood, growing up in Spanish Harlem, attending New York City’s public schools, and living in the Bronx as a teen mother, Gwendy understood the challenges in her surroundings and knew she wanted to serve children who have experienced trauma in underserved communities. As a Social Work Intern with the New York City Board of Education, she provided an array of services to high school teenage mothers who experienced many barriers to their education. Shortly after, she obtained her Bachelors in Social Work from CUNY’s Lehman College. She also holds a Masters in Social Services from Fordham University.
Committed to her lifelong dream, she has experience with not-for-profit child welfare agencies such as Cardinal McCloskey where she ensured services were provided to children in foster care and The New York Foundling, where she worked closely with families from their Bronx teen prevention program. Some of her work encompassed providing services such as parenting skills, independent living skills, counseling, day care assistance and advocacy to obtain housing, public assistance, special education, medical, legal and immigration services.
Always being aware of the impact traumatic events can have on a child’s learning, Gwendy is excited to be the Director of Middle School Social Services and core member of the Social Emotional Team. As a founding team member, she assisted with developing and always strives towards Haven’s approach of creating a traumatic sensitive culture by maintaining a safe and nurturing climate for all of the scholars. She ensures wrap around services are provided to alleviate any barriers that may get in the way of their academic success. Gwendy loves music, poetry, zumba fitness, going on vacations and spending time with her kids.