CP4P Toy Drive
The CP4P team had a Christmas toy distribution at the SALUD Center and at the Light in the Night events for the children the team serves. The toy drive served 200 children, and distributed 300 toys. “We wanted to make sure all the children experience Christmas this year,” said CP4P Victim Service Advocate Robert Reed.
The children that participate in CP4P are enthusiastic to spend time with Robert and the CP4P staff. Robert and the victim service team are particularly generous with time. “Sometimes we allow the children to come into the CP4P office, just to give them time to breathe and get away,” said Robert.
The CP4P team previously held another toy drive on Dec. 19, in collaboration with Healing Your Soul Church.
SALUD Center Grand Opening
On December 18 the SALUD Center had its grand opening. Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Congresswoman Robyn Kelly, Alderwoman Susan Sadlowski Garza, Claretian Associates board members, Preservation for Affordable Housing (POAH) and South Chicago SALUD Center senior residents were in attendance. The South Chicago SALUD Center is a joint development of Claretian Associates and POAH with POAH overseeing the property management and Claretian Associates providing resident case management and managing the SALUD Community Center. Check out the Chicago Defender news article on the event here.
Mental Health First Aid Training
On December 16 the South Chicago Network had their first in person Mental Health First Aid training of the year. The rest have been virtual because of COVID-19. The training was at the SALUD Center innovation lab, with seventeen in attendance. SCNN held seven Mental Health First Aid trainings in 2021 and 126 participants were certified.
MHFA trainings teach how to identify and respond to signs of and risk factors for mental illness and substance use disorders and dependence, non-suicidal self-injury and other warning signs. SCNN and the Lawernce Hall initiative, collaborated in South Shore and trained churches. “We wanted to make sure pastors are trained, so that not only can they help people spiritually, but also help church members find mental health resources if needed,” said Program Manager Tiarra Owens.
Part of the SCNN vision is to create a trauma informed neighborhood. “We’ve noticed a lack of mental health services and clinics in our community. The neighborhood clinic has a long waiting list for people to receive services. We want our community members to be able to recognize a mental health crisis and learn ways to provide help,” said Tiarra.
In partnership with Advocate Aurora Health, Faith Nurse LaShondria "Shonnie" Purnell, is the trained facilitator for the adult MHFA trainings. SCNN will start doing follow-ups with the certified participants, to see if their certification has been helpful and how the class has changed their outlook on mental health.
Social Networking Event
The South Chicago Neighborhood Network
(SCNN) hosted their first social networking event. SCNN wanted to welcome new partners and reengage previously participating organizations in the network. 25 representatives from potential partner organizations attended.
Many community organizations are implementing similar work. “We wanted to host this, so we could network with other community organizations, find common goals and see how we can collaborate,” said Program Manager Tiarra Owens. A few new attendees agreed to partner with SCNN such as Chicago Hopes for Kids and University Chicago Cancer Center.
The SCNN monthly meetings this year will be different this year. SCNN will featuring community organizations each month. The organization will be able to present about their agency and their resources. “There are so many new agencies whose work that we don’t know. We can create a community resume and highlight their work,” said Tiarra.
SCNN and Communities Partnering 4 Peace will be hosting their annual care package drive. If you are interested in donating contact Tiarra at firstname.lastname@example.org or CP4P Program Manager April Morris at email@example.com.
Rest In Peace Michael Hurt
Michael Hurt a member of the Communities Partnering 4 Peace (CP4P) team passed suddenly on Dec 3, 2021. Michael, part of the team since September 2021, played an important role in the South Deering team. He was introduced to the CP4P team by South Deering Outreach Worker Steve Rymus. “His team loved him, and he always volunteered for anything we had going on with CP4P,” said CP4P Program Manager April Morris. Our hearts go out to Michael’s family at this difficult time. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Intro to Remote Learning Class
Claretian Associates in collaboration with Chicago Connected will be hosting a free virtual "Introduction to Remote Learning" class through Zoom this January 27th at 5:30pm. Please join us and share the registration link with anyone who might benefit from this great opportunity. Anyone who attends 4 or more sessions will be entered into a raffle to win a laptop. Register here.
SALUD Center Rental Space
The SALUD Center has a variety of available spaces to rent for events. Please see flier for more details or check out our SALUD Center webpage here. If interested contact Adrian Gibbs at firstname.lastname@example.org
Claretian Associates is hiring for Safe Passage Watchers. For more information see descriptions here.