PROGRAMS SUPPORTED THROUGH UNITED WAY 2019-2020 FUNDING IN OUR
IMPACT AREAS: HEALTH, EDUCATION, INCOME & SAFETY NET:
Life's Challenges provides clients with financial assistance for various life essential needs including: rent/mortgage, heat and other utilities, temporary lodging, transportation, car repairs, gasoline, medical/prescription expenses and other miscellaneous expenses. This idea is to support community residents who are living paycheck to paycheck but may not qualify for other types of poverty assistance.
American Red Cross provides emergency relief to fire victims by offering financial support for food, clothing, medication and shelter as well as provides long-term casework services to ensure affected families have a viable recovery plan. During large-scale disaster events such as floods, winter storms or power outages, the Red Cross operates mass-care shelters. They recruit, train and equip volunteers to respond to both types of disasters.
The Early Childhood Education program operates year-round from 6:30am-5:30pm. This program identifies and enrolls low income families in an effort to improve the pre-kindergarten education of children enrolled while allowing parents to work, thereby alleviating poverty and strengthening the family unit. Children follow an established curriculum that is aligned with the kindergarten curriculum provided by the school district to provide the best preparation for successful and seamless transition to kindergarten.
Beyond Violence, Inc. has presented the "Breaking the Cycle" program to the Berwick Middle and High School students since 2015. The three modules used include information on self-esteem, self-confidence and self-worth; dating rights and responsibilities, understanding components of healthy relationships; and defining warning signs of unhealthy relationships. Through a partnership with Geisinger, they also include a module addressing the opioid crisis and how it parallels healthy and unhealthy relationships; further enhancing students' skills for responsible decision making and conflict resolution, called Too Good for Drugs.
It is important that Beyond Violence can continue to provide shelter for physically and/or emotionally battered women and children. The shelter provides a safe haven for women and children so they can reassess their lives and begin the healing process.
Big Brothers Big Sisters provide trained volunteers who are goal-oriented to children who are facing adversity in their lives and could benefit from having a positive role model. A professional caseworker offers support and guidance to the parents, child and volunteer and are responsible for collecting program outcome data at various intervals during the match.
Central Susquehanna Sight Services, Inc. offers preschool vision screenings (lay screenings, not intended to take the place of a professional eye examination) and educational programming on good eye health and good eye safety for preschoolers and first graders. This program will help to identify those preschoolers that may be at risk for vision problems. Follow-up is crucial to this program should a preschooler be referred. Follow-up is made encouraging parent/guardian to seek the professional comprehensive eye exam.
Support Services help with daily living for people who are blind/visually impaired. Services include: assistance with preparing shopping lists, shopping, labeling/organizing/storing food, personal business such as; reading mail, paying bills, banking, budgeting, handling correspondence, transportation/escort services (with sighted guide escort to medical appointments, banking, shopping) and skills of daily living. Central
Susquehanna Sight Services teaches practical information and education to efficiently compensate for vision impairment so they may function as fully and independently as possible within their home, family unity and community.
Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS) is an evidence-based, proactive approach to behavior developed from applied behavior analysis and child-centered approaches to learning. PBIS helps parents to understand the purpose of challenging behavior and use positive strategies to change or prevent those behaviors. PBIS supports different methods of assisting children and families with PBIS strategies. Individualized support through Family Support Staff (FSS) demonstrate a need based on the child's classroom behavior and parental needs. FSS establish a family goal plan and meet weekly to provide support based on needs, helping to develop and implement PBIS strategies.
With BAUW allocated dollars, the Columbia County Family Center serves 8 families with the evidence-based Parents as Teachers Model (PAT). PAT has four components: personal home visits, group connections, screenings and connections to resources. During each home visit a parent-child activity was completed, developmental information was presented, parenting topics were discussed and family well-being was reviewed. Enrolled children receive an annual health screening to make sure they are up to date on immunizations, no hearing or vision concerns are present, good dental hygiene practices are in place, etc. The group connections are held monthly and provide families with socialization opportunities and an increased awareness of community resources.
The Berwick Salvation Army's Comprehensive Emergency Services program includes the food pantry, Tuesday and Thursday soup kitchens, holiday assistance and utility assistance for people living in the Berwick area.
The SMILE Book Program offers free books to the children in their support group. This program is to encourage mothers to read with their children, have their children read to them and talk to their children about the books they have read. SMILE educates their mothers on the importance of good reading habits. SMILE reaches out to the community to offer free books to children in hopes of building an at home library.
UNITED WAY PROGRAMS:
Saturday Soup Kitchens
Berwick Farmers Market (Crispin Field)
Beyond the Blend Market (137 West Front Street, Berwick)
Read Across America Day
Dolly Parton Imagination Library
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)
2-1-1 Information Line
Stuff the Bus Drive