The Brick House Parent and Family Services program provides support to local families by connecting parents to existing resources, helping parents to navigate systems, and building community projects that respond to the current needs of families who face challenges addressing basic needs.
Connecting Families to Resources
Some of the resources and services we help parents to connect with are: Food Stamps (SNAP), Cash Assistance, Fuel Assistance, WIC, medical and dental care, local housing, legal assistance, programs at local family centers, recreational programs such as Parks and Recreation, Adult Education programs, schools, domestic violence support, and a local volunteer ride service. We also support parents as they navigate employment situations and the court system, and provide Spanish/English interpretation and advocacy when needed.
This year, in addition to our direct service work, we have collaborated with community partners on two important community-building projects that aim to benefit the families we serve.
In January 2016, we began a pilot project, together with the Agricultural Action Network, to connect volunteers from the community with families in need of transportation support. Because transportation is one of the biggest needs identified by the families we serve, this year we have committed fully to this project, called the Franklin County Farmworker Community Rideshare. We have grown the volunteer list to almost 90 members, held two volunteer orientations, and we are hoping to soon bring our orientation out to local community groups who want to become volunteers. This year, we coordinated over 50 volunteer rides for local family members to places such as Greenfield, Hadley, Springfield, Hartford, Boston, and even Georgia! Through the Franklin County Farmworker Community Rideshare, neighbors meet each other and our community is strengthened. We hope in this next year to more effectively meet the transportation needs of local families by connecting even more community members with each other.
Family Emergency Fund
Another project we have built this year is an emergency fund for families in crisis. In collaboration with Community Action’s Family Center in Greenfield, we began the Franklin County Peoples Fund to support families who are impacted by the recent targeting of specific members of our communities. This is a grassroots, ongoing fundraising effort intended to channel community resources to families who are saddled with unexpected and disproportionate financial challenges. Thus far, we have been able to provide approximately 25 families with much needed support through the Peoples Fund. We hope this fundraising project can be a sustainable community effort into the future.
Access Parent Family Services
If you or someone you know would like to access Parent and Family Services at The Brick House, please contact Abby Graseck, Parent and Family Services Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org, 413-676-9160
Volunteer for the Community Rideshare
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer for the Franklin County Farmworker Community Rideshare, please email email@example.com
Donate to the Peoples’ Fund
If you would like to donate to the Franklin County Peoples Fund, you can donate quickly and easily through Venmo, send to Marianne Bullock. Or you can send a check to Community Action Family Center, c/o Marianne Bullock, 90 Federal St, Greenfield MA 01301. Checks can be made out to CA Franklin County Peoples Fund.
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