“I have a lot to offer and services that I would like to provide to communities that may not know how to reach out and reconnect to services.”
April has been with The Salvation Army for more than 22 years. As the director of social services, April oversees a lot of the organization’s 2Gen work, which builds family well-being by working with children and adults simultaneously—not just one or the other.

“This work is important because we can’t leave our children behind,” she says. “That’s our future.”

She says they used to only provide wraparound services for mothers and fathers in their shelter; but they soon realized that after parents became stable, the kids were still suffering.

“We realized if we didn’t provide wraparound services for the child, then that could set the family up to spiral back into homelessness or poverty based on inappropriate behaviors at school or parents having to take time off work to be with their kids. We just realized kids needed a lot of services as well.”

The Salvation Army runs several programs that move entire families from crisis into supportive, stable housing.

One family they recently worked with was a grandmother who had just taken custody of her three teenage grandsons because their mother was incarcerated. The grandmother was living in a one-bedroom apartment in a community for senior citizens. Once she had custody of her grandchildren, she was going to lose her housing. Her case manager at The Salvation Army was able to connect her to a voucher that allowed their family to move into a three-bedroom home. She said the boys had not received medical care in a long time and with The Salvation Army’s help, the grandmother was able to set them up with quality health care and even help her oldest obtain his driver’s license.

“We made it a little bit easier for the grandmother … just to be able to provide the resources, things that she never really needed or never thought she would need. Our staff was able to walk hand-in-hand with her and they’re all doing really well now.”

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