The last blog featured the first of the Six Pillars of Support on which we base our work. We are guided by these six guidelines in order to provide life changing programs and services to the women and babies we serve. They provide a pathway to progress and a road to success and self sufficiency.The first three include: Safe and Secure Shelter, Improving Family Relations and Child Development and Enrichment.
The second three are Family Resource Center, Social Connections and Job Readiness.
Family Resource Center
The Family Resource Center is a hub of activity. MissionCorps members live in the homes with the moms and babies. Most other staff is at The Family Resource Center which is The Fiat House. There are moms, kids, babies and general hustle and bustle all the time. There are offices but also a playground, yard, toys galore, a kitchen and the courtyard. This is the place moms come for family coaching, case management, one-on-one goal setting and community referral. There are resource fairs and weekly enrollment services for assistance. Mothers have access to legal clinics and life skills classes. They can also find clothing, toiletries, pantry essentials and household items in the pantry. Of course, they can also get diapers. On the financial side, there is emergency assistance, scholarships for educational needs and medical services including glasses and dental service referrals.
Recent studies suggest that social connections is a greater determinant to health than obesity, smoking and high blood pressure. Experts link strong social connections to improved quality of life, a boost in mental health, longer life and a decrease in suicide. At Maggie’s Place, the focus is on connecting parents and children with not only each other but their communities. Parent/Child classes that promote family resiliency and literacy skills top the list. There are also classes that focus on fitness, healthy eating, art and yoga. A host of community events dispel social isolation. Things like Back To School. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Build Wth Me, Cultural Events and other outings create further connectedness.
Creating self sufficiency begins with job readiness. Through family coaching and one-on-one case management, moms learn financial literacy, resume writing and interview techniques. They take Ready To Rent classes that teach not only the skills needed to rent a house or apartment but the importance of using this as a path to greater freedom and stability. There is also a closet filled with professional clothing and work uniforms to help mothers on their way.
We strive every day to make the lives of our mothers and babies healthy, happy and self-sufficient. We thank all of our supporters–program, staff, donors and volunteers in helping to bring the six pillars to the moms at Maggie’s Place.