While the pandemic portion of Covid-19 seems to have abated, its impact is still profound on our community. As the governmental helping resources are withdrawn, the people that we serve are still feeling extraordinary trauma and difficulty in surviving. In our children’s programs, we see a significant loss of the ability to be able to negotiate relationships in ways other than anger, and anger seems to be a universal response. This feeling of being on-edge is present in many of those seeking help, and the effort to keep all of our programs alive over the last two and a half years still weighs heavily on our staff.
Family has taken on the role of providing what are known as the social determinants of health – those things which are essential for people to maintain a stable and healthy environment for themselves and their families – housing; food; access to counseling; services to support recovery from health and substance abuse issues; training to gain viable employment; services to address the trauma caused by domestic violence. We are proud of bringing Restorative Justice into the schools and providing emergency services to homeless people every night and weekend.
The Agency has been able to provide very significant services as a result of the increased funding to address pandemic issues, but now that funding is drying up, and we must again turn to the community for help. We deal with a lot of issues, and the community can support the Agency has a whole, or any of the issues we address. If you are concerned about your neighbors being hungry, we’re working throughout the County to provide emergency food, and especially to distribute quality food donated by our local farmers to ensure our community remains healthy. Our shelters are the first response for homeless individuals and families, but they’re only the beginning of efforts to respond to their needs by providing permanent support.
The programming that Family and other community agencies provide is a measure of how the community responds and takes care of its most at-risk. If you have already given to Family, thank you. If you can give again, we need it, and if you need help, we will always be there for you.
On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff of Family of Woodstock, Inc., I want to wish you and your family a healthy and joyous holiday season and New Year.
Michael Berg, Executive Director
Evelyn Clarke, Board President
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