Friday, August 26, 2016


Submitted by Emily Lyons, CTI Case Manager

Transition is hard, but Community LINC is here to make it a little bit easier.

New home, new school, new neighborhood, new sounds, new routine. Transition is hard. Transition is even harder when it involves uncertainty. Families who are experiencing homelessness often struggle with knowing what comes next, and once they do find a more stable place to stay, whether that be with a friend or relative, at a shelter or a community program, most of the uncertainty remains with them: What happens when I have to leave here? When will my time be up? What will we do then? Its questions like these that make already difficult situations turn into impossible tasks. Here at Community LINC, we walk side by side with our residents to make these transitions less daunting. From the day residents enter the program, they are supported by staff to look for employment, enroll children in school, obtain permanent housing, and connect with community resources in order to make their transition to the next chapter of their lives easier. Even after our families leave the furnished apartments on Community LINC’s campus, they are still supported for nine months during our Aftercare program. Preparing our residents to embrace their new chapter is sometimes challenging, but more times than not, it is simply rewarding – especially when through good preparation, the uncertainty diminishes and the excitement regarding their next steps escalates.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Strong Parents Help Build Stable Children

Submitted by Griselda Williams, Manager Mental Wellness Services

Recently, several coworkers and I met to discuss our annual report for the Children’s Trust Fund (CTF), Missouri’s Foundation for Child Abuse Prevention. The grant funds mental wellness services at Community LINC, for children and youth ages 6-17. Mental wellness services are provided by a Child Therapist to include individual therapy, socialization, coping group therapy and often sibling group therapy.  As we were discussing interventions for children and youth our conversation naturally moved toward mental wellness supports provided to the parents. Some of the topics shared with Community LINC parents to support stable families and safety of children include:
  • Protective Factors for Strengthening Families (taken from training offered via the Children’s Trust Fund).
    •  Concrete support for parents in times of need
    • Parent Resilience
    • Social Connections
    • Social and Emotional Competence
    • Knowledge of Parenting and Child Development
  • Parents as Role Model (Open discussion from the, Children See, Children Do video).
  • Why Does My Child Act Like That? (We discussed the four archetypes for child misbehavior).
  • How Well Do You Know Your Child? (Parents were given a handout with questions about their child’s favorite color, video game, best friend, etc. Parents met with their children to discuss their responses.
  • Child Development for children birth to 5 with the Ages and Stages Questionnaire and Social, emotional and cognitive development of children ages 6-17.
  • How to Help Your Child after a Traumatic Event (such as homelessness).

When parents have information and feel supported there is less risk for child abuse and neglect. These “protective factors” help families succeed and increase their resiliency during stressful times; like when they are experiencing homelessness.