The Strong Families initiative is a financial stability effort that helps families get out of poverty and enhance their housing opportunities through skill building, case management, and mentoring.
According to the fall of 2014 A.L.I.C.E. (Asset Limited Income Constrained Employed) report 44 percent of Marion County families struggle to meet their financial needs. To address this, United Way of Marion County is launching the Strong Families Initiative.
The goal of the Strong Families program is to increase financial stability for participating families. This program will serve 70-80 adults and children each year. Strong Families is a unique initiative that leverages our relationships with more than nine non-profit partners, in collaboration with employers, local colleges, financial institutions and agencies. Strong Families provides families with comprehensive resources, wraparound support and the services they need to reach real and lasting financial stability. The initiative helps families build stronger financial futures by acquiring skills and education, obtaining better jobs and developing good financial habits.
To help identify families to participate, United Way is partnering with Creative Services, Community Action, Habitat for Humanity, Interfaith, Ocala Housing Authority, Open Arms Village, Shepherd's LightHouse, The Salvation Army and Volunteers of America.
Through this initiative, United Way of Marion County will be partnering with local agencies and serving identified families who can benefit from this effort to increase their financial stability.
Some of the major components of the initiative are:
• Skill Building - 15 weeks of skill building sessions (2 cycles per year).
• Case Management - A case manager will meet with families bi-weekly
The goals of this case management will include: 1.) Providing resources for each families needs 2.) Ensuring all families are attending the skill building sessions. 3.) Tracking the family’s progress toward their goals.
Strong Families Initiative will track data such as:
• Goals for the family - each family will establish and identify reasonable goals to meet.
• Monitor progress towards those goals.
• Current level of public assistance that the family is receiving.