Family Success Centers

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Programs and Services that Build Pathways out of Poverty
Homefirst has a long history of working with children and families in crisis, parents unable to provide basic necessities for their children, and young moms starting a family without ever having had the role models or parenting support they needed to succeed. Our services help to support and strengthen the capacity for children and families to navigate difficult times and make positive choices. Family Support and Success Centers are designed to be “one-stop” shops that provide wrap around resources and supports to families – making them and the communities they live in – stronger. Staff serve as advocates for families and help connect them to other resources available to them. Services include, but are not limited to:

  • Access to child, maternal and family health services; family success plans; parent education; employment related services; development of life skills; housing related services; advocacy and related support; as well as information, referrals and linkages to community resources. The organization is continuously developing unique partnerships under this initiative, to further strengthen families.
  • A calendar of events is released monthly, detailing the month’s activities and events.
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Family Support and Family Success Centers

Homefirst operates one Family Support Center and two Family Success Center, each with its own set of programs and services that are customized to meet the immediate needs of the local community. These centers are located in:

  • Plainfield Family Support Center 905 Watchung Avenue, Plainfield, NJ
  • Linden Family Success Center  623 North Wood Avenue, Suite 6, Linden, NJ
  • Hillside Family Success Center 1100 Woodruff Avenue, Hillside, NJ
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Self-Sufficiency & Life Skills Opportunities

Parents and residents are encouraged, and sometimes required to access these services. They often start with one program and transition to other programs as they progress into independence and financial stability. These opportunities include information and training in, but is not limited to:

  • Financial literacy
  • Employment services
  • English as a Second Language
  • GED – High School Equivalency
  • Teen mentoring
  • Grief and loss workshops
  • Financial Literacy, tax-preparation
  • Computer and Internet access
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Parent Education, Enrichment & Advocacy

Homefirst recognizes that successful parenting is the fundamental foundation for developing strong families and thriving communities. Parents, who are dealing with a sudden loss of income or obstacles that jeapardize the stability of their homes and families, need resources and services that help them overcome those obstacles and transition into sustainable careers, housing and ultimately stronger families. Through our parent education programs, parents  receive;

  • Parenting education
  • Parent/child enrichment activities
  • Support group counseling and services
  • Informational workshops
  • Advocacy services
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Housing Related Services

A home is the most critical need any child and family requires to feel safe and to grow into healthy and productive members of a community. When families face homeslessness they deal with crisis in ways that do not benefit children. The stress of pending homelessness or being in a homeless situation is a crisis that Homefirst is most effective at in helping the community thrive. Families are provided with access to a number of services that create stability, including:

  • Permanent Housing for qualified families and individuals who are homeless or low-income and seeking affordable, long term permanent housing.
  • Transitional Housing services that provide families an affordable place to live for an average of 18 – 24 months in coordination with supportive services such as job training, educational counseling, job placement, financial literacy training, referral to social services, transportation solutions, and more.
  • Permanent Supportive Housing, which includes the coordination of supportive services with placement in affordable homes made available to families who are living with a disability and are homeless.
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Family Support & Homelessness Prevention

Through the Family Support Center and Family Success Centers, Homefirst offers individuals and families emergency assistance, eviction prevention services, access to affordable housing (security deposit and first month’s rent), and utilities assistance.

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Youth Empowerment

Homefirst operates Youth Success Center within its Family Success Centers and utilizes strength-based practices to acheive positive youth development. This framework uses strengthening families protective factors and evidence-based research from the Center for the Study of Social Policy of Washington, DC. Youth assist in their own planning to learn new experiences and participate in engaging activities.  Services generally include, but are not limited to;

  • Academic Enrichment & College Access – After school homework group, tutoring, public speaking, SAT preparation to increase academic skills and study habits.
  • Social & Leadership Development – Offer community service, internships and entrepreneurial initiatives to increase civic participation and provide leadership development opportunities.
  • Life Skills Training – Provide financial literacy, employment readiness, problem solving, conflict resolution, self esteem, relationships, and personal care skill building workshops.
  • Arts & Culture Experiences – Explore and experience cultural, art, environmental and civic/political areas. Our Center is linked to our Family Success Center in order to create a rich environment bringing together family, youth, community, adult role models and staff with the goal of supporting and assisting youth in their transition to adulthood.
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