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Social Services

The Women Behind our Work

March 22, 2017

March is National Social Work month, as we mentioned last week, and we want to take some time out to thank the women who keep our social services running! Our case workers, Jeri and Verna, serve the impoverished, homeless, and down on their luck each and every day. They work hard, love well, and give of themselves daily.

So “cheers!” to our case workers- and thank you for what you do!

Meet Jeri

She is our caseworker in Fayetteville and Springdale and has been serving with The Salvation Army for a year. She has worked in social services for 17 years in diverse disciplines, such as children with disabilities and corrections.

I was an education major and switched to Social Work because I realized I like working with the whole family and not just the child. What I want (in a job) and what I have here is coming to work and it not feeling like work.

Why do you do what you do day in and day out?

Because I have been on both sides (of social services). As a recovering addict myself, I can relate. I have been a single mother, and I have been on that side of the window many times. I know how it feels to be in that situation.

How has does being on “both sides of the window” inform your work each day?

I don’t want people to feel judged by their caseworker, or like they are less than. Everyone has their time of need. Maybe not this year, but you never know when that might happen: when it could be you. I’ve needed utility help, I have needed social services. I have needed rehab services. I have had all of those, and it makes me able to relate to my clients in a deeper way and with respect.

What do you want people to know about social services that they may not know or expect?

Caseloads are overwhelming. And people may think that social workers see their clients as a number or a stack of papers. But that’s not the case. It is hard to keep up sometimes, but they are not a number to me. They are a person, a family, a life. I listen to what they have to say to me… I hear it.

I don’t think the job is hard, because at the end of the day, I feel fulfilled. I try to steer [my clients] in the right direction to get services [they need]. Understanding them, having been in their shoes- that is what makes it easy for me.

and Meet Verna

Verna, our caseworker in Bentonville and Siloam Springs, is going on her 7th year with The Salvation Army. She began as a part-time caseworker and has since become full-time.

Why do you do what you do?

I love to help people and hear their stories. I meet all kinds of people coming through our social service office, and I really do love to do what I can to meet their needs.

I didn’t even really know about the great needs here in Northwest Arkansas until I started working here. And I’ve lived here!

So thank you from the bottom of our hearts to these two amazing women who make a difference in our community each day! Social Work would not be the same without you! Happy National Social Workers Month!


Are you in need of assistance?

  1. Call 479-521-2151
  2. Ask for social services in the city where you LIVE
  3. You will be transferred our relayed the direct line number for our offices across the region
  4. Make an appointment

We help with…

  • Electricity bills
  • Diapers
  • Food
  • Prescription Med Assistance
  • Furniture for house fires
  • Coats in the winter
  • Box fans in the summer

To see all of our Social Service Locations and numbers, read >>>> here.

National Social Work Month

March 15, 2017

The official definition of Social Work according to the International Federation of Social Work is as follows…

Social work is a practice-based profession and an academic discipline that promotes social change and development, social cohesion, and the empowerment and liberation of people. Principles of social justice, human rights, collective responsibility and respect for diversities are central to social work. Social work engages people and structures to address life challenges and enhance well-being.

However, it is so much MORE than that! Social Work is defined by the amazing men and women sacrificing each and every day to serve the needs of others. It is filled with joy, exhaustion, sorrow, warmth, pain, commitment, discomfort, and contentment. But most importantly, it is PEOPLE giving to other people.

Social workers are everywhere. And they are changing our world.

The job is not glamorous. It does not pay generously or receive grand recognition in the media. Social Workers are not often in the limelight, in fact, they often go unthanked for the hard work they put into their job, both physically and emotionally.

So in honor of National Social Work Month, we want to take the opportunity to thank the caseworkers who serve the homeless and impoverished on our behalf here at The Salvation Army, along with the hundreds of other social workers in this community who are making hurting lives whole through their service.

Tune in the next few weeks to meet a few of the case workers on our staff who champion what they do and make a difference for our clients every day!

 

 

 

Relief

February 15, 2016

Bread Rack

Most people know that we provide emergency shelter, and I think the community knows that we have thrift stores as well (see our post “Opportunity”, if you don’t!) But our Social Service Program is a different story. Our Social Service Team meets a variety of difficult needs day in and day out. They are truly the hands and feet of Jesus and do their jobs joyfully, with little recognition.

Daily, they hear stories of loss, hurt, and need.
Daily, they provide love and support to the broken.
Daily, they seek to “Do the Most Good” with our resources.
And daily, they change lives in need for the better with small tokens of support.

In case you aren’t very familiar with the help we provide, here’s a little list.

 Services we offer
• Utility bill assistance
• Food Bags
• Thrift store clothing vouchers
• Furniture vouchers for home disaster
• Baby diapers and formula
• School supplies
• Box fans in the summer
• Angel Tree Christmas assistance
• And really any other need that we can feasibly fill

Diapers

Reading this, you may not be able to identify with these needs. Perhaps you have never needed help feeding your family, or feared your heat being shut off in winter, or wondered how you your growing toddler will have clothes when they hit that next big growth spurt.

But many of the people we see didn’t see it coming either.

These are their stories.

Mom (3)

Mom (2)

Bus

vet (1)

A word from our Social Service Director, Greg Chambers

Valentines

“The Salvation Army provides these services so people will have food on the table and clothes on their backs.  Most people have struggled financially at one time or another.  If The Salvation Army can pay an electric bill one month or help with their prescription medications, then maybe, it’s just the help a family needs to get through a tough time.  Most all of our programs are funded by generous donations from the community.”

If you want to give back with us, donating is simple! Just click the link here and get started!

Give

Statistics (October 1, 2014 – September 30, 2015)

  • 2,353 individuals helped through Social Services
  • 2,013 children provided gifts through Angel Tree
  • Over 70,000 meals provided (hot meals, food bags, Thanksgiving, Christmas meals)

Paperwork

Need Help or Assistance? Let us help you.
In order to receive services, clients need to call and make an appointment. The case manager will tell them what they need to bring.

Fayetteville (479) 521-2151
Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9am – 12pm and 1pm – 3:30pm.
Springdale (479) 751-2077
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10am – 1pm and 2pm – 4pm.
Rogers (479) 636-8522
Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10am – 1pm and 2pm – 4:30pm.
Siloam Springs (479) 524-2084
Wednesdays 10am- 1pm and 2pm – 4:30pm.