2018 Marks VNSNY's 125th Anniversary!
2018 is a very special year for the Visiting Nurse Service of New York. It is our quasquicentennial anniversary, marking 125 years of VNSNY's commitment and contribution to the health and well-being of the New York community and our most vulnerable residents. The photos on this page celebrate the theme of enduring and thriving over time. They feature iconic landmarks that were a vital part of New York City's daily life in 1893 - and that 125 years later, just like VNSNY, are still standing strong.
In 1893, Lillian Wald, freshly graduated from nursing school, was teaching a home nursing course for immigrant mothers on the crowded Lower East Side of Manhattan when a little girl asked her to come attend to her ailing mother. The experience of caring for the woman, who lay suffering in the filthy bed of her tenement apartment, shook Lillian to her core. At that moment, she decided she would devote her life to caring for the poor and vulnerable.
A few months later, supported by philanthropists such as Jacob Schiff, Lillian Wald and her nursing school colleague, Mary Brewster, moved to the Lower East Side themselves and began providing care and social services to the community from a fifth-floor walk-up in an old tenement. Their nursing service went on to become VNSNY- the organization we know today.
A century and a quarter later, VNSNY remains steadfastly committed to the mission set forth by Lillian Wald: to provide for the city's most vulnerable residents-the chronically ill, the frail elderly, and children, including the insured, underinsured, and the uninsured-making vital health services available for New Yorkers of every background. Over those 125 years, we have provided expert and compassionate care to millions of New Yorkers. It is a history we are proud of.