Beech Acres Receives Grant To Provide Critical Support For Families In Crisis
The Jacob G. Schmidlapp Trusts, Fifth Third Bank, Trustee, has just awarded Beech Acres Parenting Center a $25,000 grant toward its newly created Family Emergency Support Fund. The Fund enables Beech Acres to offer urgent financial support for basic material needs and customized, mental and behavioral health services for vulnerable families who are in crisis due to economic hardships.
This grant comes at a critically important time for Greater Cincinnati families as the economy causes an increasing number of parents to be unemployed or underemployed add huge additional stress factors to families. Currently 75% of Beech Acres clients are seeking supportive services and do not have the means to pay even a nominal fee for assistance they desperately need. Over 20% have three or more children.
“We’re finding that families facing economic hardships find it hard to even seek out mental health or family support because they cannot meet even basic material needs,” said Dr. Patrick Nugent, Beech Acres Parenting Center vice president for development. “They cannot focus on improving their family functioning because they are about to be evicted, or heat or electricity have been turned off, or a newborn baby lacks a crib. They may not even be able to keep therapy appointments because they cannot afford a bus token. Public funding does not cover these costs, so our Family Emergency Support Fund vital to the well being of the family.”
Beech Acres Parenting Center supports parents and caregivers in the most challenging and important job of their lives: raising children today who are able to thrive tomorrow. With a mission of Strengthening Families for Children, Beech Acres provided over 17,000 services for children, parents and educators across greater Cincinnati last year in homes, schools and in the community to strengthen parenting and relationship capabilities. For more information, please visit www.beechacres.org.
Anchored by Beech Acres’ Parent Connections Department, Family Emergency Support Fund services will include:
- Basic Material Needs: Financial assistance with emergency needs: transportation, utilities, food, child safety equipment, diapers, and other needs that prevent a family from working on social, emotional, and behavioral challenges.
- Parent Connections: A Beech Acres Parent Liaison will conduct an initial assessment, consult with parents and determine which services best address their needs. Based on their findings, they will be enrolled in one or more of the services listed below. If necessary, families will also be referred to other organizations or services providers to meet their needs i.e. the Freestore Foodbank for food.
- Consultation and Coaching: Parents, and sometimes the entire family, will participate in face-to-face meetings with a trained consultant or coach as a more focused and affordable alternative to family therapy. The sessions are customized to the needs of each family and address the specific challenges the parents, couples and/or children are facing. Together, they examine barriers and explore practical solutions. On average, consultation services are offered for 2-3 sessions for a total of approximately 2-4 hours.
- Mediation Services: Divorcing couples, married couples under stress, or families will be brought together with a mediator to improve communication and resolve conflicts. On average, mediation services are offered for 2-3 sessions for a total of approximately 2-4 hours.
- Individual Crisis Intervention Services: This service is a solution-focused means to help children and parents resolve a particular crisis. On average, crisis intervention services are provided through 1-2 sessions for approximately 2-3 hours.
- Parent Peer Support: Beech Acres pairs parents and families with trained parent peer coaches who have successfully overcome similar challenges in their own lives. Peer coaches will assist them in responding to their specific needs. Hours of support vary based on the needs of the family.