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Good News: July 17, 2020

Welcome to Good News! In this space we feature positive stories of community impact and development, relevant to the areas Metropolitan serves or the programs we offer.

Calumet Census Champions share why it’s important to get counted

Deborah Daley and Tanga Morris, both Family Coaches in the Family Works program at our Calumet Center’s Altgeld Gardens site, are champions of Metropolitan’s community outreach around the Census.

Virtual Empowered Purse Gala Mpowers our violence prevention programs

Metropolitan Board Member Sophia Ruffolo and Femmebought presented the virtual Empowered Purse Gala, with a portion of proceeds benefiting Metropolitan!

Parents as Partners Home Visitor Patricia: “It’s great to see the little smiling faces.”

Patricia, a Home Visitor in our Parents as Partners program, shares her experience in connecting with families

Mpowered Families Vote: Illinois 2020 General Election

Election day is November 3, 2020! Illinois’ General Assembly made several changes this year in the ways we can vote so that you can do so safely during the coronavirus pandemic. Our Government Affairs team is sharing resources on how to boost your power by choosing your elected leaders and voting in this year’s election.

Good News: June 26, 2020

Welcome to Good News! In this space we feature positive stories of community impact and development, relevant to the areas Metropolitan serves or the programs we offer.

New growth in DuPage Early Learning: bean plants!

Our DuPage Center’s Home-Based Early Learning programs are learning about planting! Carmen Toranzo, a Parent Child Educator in the program, has been working with her families on an experiment to observe the Life Cycle of the Bean Plant.

Metropolitan Peace Academy virtually celebrates its newest graduates

The fifth cohort of the Metropolitan Peace Academy, as well as the first cohort of Case Managers, graduated on June 17 after working hard to complete an 18-week, 144-hour curriculum designed to professionalize the field of street outreach.

Volunteer Superheroes: Heather pays it forward for FSS of MFSD

When her company, Million Dollar Roundtable, encouraged its employees to think about how they can help those who are suffering during the Covid-19 pandemic, Heather took her support for FSS of MFSD a step further to support not only our shelter, but also local businesses.

“Her first priority was feeding her family, and then paying the rent and utilities.” Legal Aid Society secures financial relief amid Covid-19 challenges

“Sara” (name changed to protect identity), an undocumented survivor of domestic violence, already knew the Legal Aid Society when she reached out for help in the midst of a time-sensitive financial crisis.

Metropolitan Statement on George Floyd

At Metropolitan Family Services, we stand in agreement in calling for justice for George Floyd and the many others who have been killed like him.

CP4P Statement on George Floyd

Over the last few days, the Communities Partnering 4 Peace (CP4P) coalition members have grieved the loss of George Floyd.

Good News: May 29, 2020

Welcome to Good News! In this space we feature positive stories of community impact and development, relevant to the areas Metropolitan serves or the programs we offer.

Midway Connections – Keeping Parents and Children Impacted by Domestic Violence Safe

The Midway Connections program, located at Metropolitan’s Midway Center on Chicago’s Southwest Side, provides supervised visitation and safe exchange services for families that have experienced domestic violence.

Parents as Partners Outreach Worker Yomara: “We meet our families where they are.”

Yomara and her team are committed to sharing the program’s goals and mission to as many people as possible. In this current climate, that means going above and beyond to make sure they’re available virtually for the parents they serve.

Longtime friend and supporter Donna Tropp sews protective masks for Evanston/Skokie staff

Our Evanston / Skokie Valley Center staff are all smiles and gratitude underneath their new masks, hand-crafted by longtime friend and supporter Donna Tropp!

Southeast Chicago staff connect over a Zoom Scavenger Hunt

What does your makeshift/home office look like? Where are your half-finished quarantine craft projects? Can you find holiday decor left up by mistake? During our Southeast Chicago Center’s team “Stay at Home”-themed scavenger hunt over Zoom, staff showed off their pets, their self-care spaces, and more!

“We feel confident that we are going to overcome this obstacle.” Client Financial Assistance Fund empowers Parents as Partners mom

Arely, a mother in our Parents as Partners program, is a full-time student. She works part-time and lives with her father to help her support both her child and her education.

Our DuPage Early Learning team has HEART

Even in difficult times, staff show up with heart every day to support children and families from home!

Calumet’s clinical social workers are committed to working toward their licensure!

Our Calumet Center’s clinical social workers are dedicated to working towards licensure! Not to be deterred by working remotely, this group recently moved their meetings to Zoom.

Northwestern Hospital donation feeds 120 DuPage Early Learning families

A generous donation from our partners at Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital’s CATCH Early Childhood Program recently provided our DuPage Center’s Early Learning programs with enough food and critical safety supplies for 120 families!

We’re grateful for you!

We’re turning Giving Tuesday into Gratitude Tuesday, because today and every day we’re grateful for you. We’d like to take this moment to thank all our supporters who Mpower Metroplitan’s clients, staff, volunteers, and program partners on the front lines of COVID-19.

Metropolitan Calumet’s Zoom Bingo helps seniors connect with staff and each other

The “Bingo!” sounded a little different through a Zoom meeting, but the seniors participating in Metropolitan Calumet’s virtual Bingo felt the excitement all the same.

What does the Census have to do with elected officials?

The answer is a fancy word called apportionment. Apportionment is how the country decides the number of representatives each state gets in the U.S. House of Representatives based on state population numbers.

Safe Children advocate Dawn on her experiences connecting online

Alexandra Millikent, Program Supervisor of the Safe Children Program at Family Shelter Service of Metropolitan Family Services DuPage, shares a slimy story about her experiences in adapting her communications with her young clients.

Zoom yoga helps Southeast Chicago staff connect

Yoga is just one of the activities staff have been sharing with each other over weekly Zoom get-togethers. Executive Director Vanessa Schwartz asked her staff what talents or skills they’d like to share, and the group responded with ideas from visual art to music instruction and beyond.

“Metro Mom” sews protective masks for North Center staff on the COVID-19 front lines

“Metro Mom” Susana is helping Metropolitan’s front-line staff stay safe from COVID-19.

Community partnership in DuPage feeds twenty families

Thanks to a partnership between Jim and Tom’s, US Foods, and Kronos Foods, and St. Alexis Church twenty families in Metropolitan DuPage’s Bensenville Head Start program received hot meals.

Domestic violence survivors “need an advocate now more than ever.”

Metropolitan’s Court Advocacy Program is finding creative ways to ensure their clients are still supported

Domestic Violence survivor makes masks, empowering herself and those around her

A Domestic Violence Counseling client, whose job involves making products by hand, has been learning how to use a sewing machine on her path to gain financial stability.

Midway & North children have new wheels, thanks to Radio Flyer and Cradles 2 Crayons

We’re all staying inside, but Radio Flyer is helping our kids get moving! Longtime community partner Cradles 2 Crayons arranged for a generous donation of Radio flyer wagons, scooters and tricycles.

Staff Superheroes: FamilyWorks team empowering Calumet Center families remotely

“Despite staff teleworking, it is still business as usual.” Program Director Carrie Pullie shares her team in the FamilyWorks program at Metropolitan Calumet is working hard to support clients remotely with regular remote client check-ins.

Cradles 2 Crayons provides necessities to families in our North, Calumet, and DuPage communities

For our clients who received any of the 49,328 individual diapers, wipes, and hygiene kits donated by longtime Metropolitan community partner Cradles 2 Crayons, they saw the support as a ‘blessing’.

Blue Island community comes together to support food pantry

Our Southwest Center’s Blue Island Robbins Neighborhood Network staff and community partners have been going above and beyond to help ensure our families receive the support they need.

Volunteer superheroes: Debbie and her family in Blue Island step up to make protective masks for home visitors

As our Southwest Chicago Center’s Blue Island Robbins Neighborhood Network works with the Blue Cap (Blue Island Citizens for Persons with Developmental Disabilities) Food Pantry, staff and volunteers have been going above and beyond to ensure our community residents receive the food they need.

Early Learning staff stay connected with parents and children as programs shift to e-learning

As our Early Learning program’s staff and families shelter in place, our teachers are finding ways to stay engaged with parents and kids!

Good News: March 25, 2020

Welcome to Good News! In this space we feature positive stories of community impact and development, relevant to the areas Metropolitan serves or the programs we offer.

Staff Superheroes: SmartCare Team

Our SmartCare (Electronic Health Records) team is spreading positivity and working to creatively adapt during COVID-19 in order to keep supporting Metropolitan’s staff!

Our Gallistel Community School’s Music Programs held a Spring Showcase to celebrate band, choir, and orchestra students

Congratulations to the students in the Gallistel Language Academy Music Programs on a successful Spring Showcase!

Everyone Counts: Census 2020 resources

Let’s get ready for the 2020 Census! We’re collecting information and resources to help ensure our communities get counted.

Spotlight On: the Older Caregivers Project

Metropolitan’s Older Caregivers Project helps older caregivers plan for children’s long term care. It aids families in establishing a stronger support system through case management and linkages to community resources, ensures the well-being and safety of the children and caregivers, and provides a recommendation regarding the living arrangements for the children.

Midway Learning & Wellness Center staff shares the love

Our Midway Learning and Wellness Center recently celebrated staff and showed appreciation to one another by hosting a “Share the L♥VE Week”!

Happy Retirement to our CFO, Denis Hurley!

One of Metropolitan’s finest is leaving Metropolitan after 37 years. Chief Financial Officer Denis Hurley has retired from the agency, effective March 1, 2020.

Good News: February 28, 2020

Welcome to Good News! In this space we feature positive stories of community impact and development, relevant to the areas Metropolitan serves or the programs we offer.

Calumet Center celebrates our new Certified Medical Administrative Assistants

Congratulations to the graduates of our Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) Training Program’s Fall 2019 Cohort! The CMAA Training Program, an initiative of Metropolitan’s Financial Opportunity Center, serves clients who are interested in pursuing a career in the medical field.

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month

February is national Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month (TDVAM). Anisha Bhatia, Senior Prevention Educator at Family Shelter Service of Metropolitan Family Services DuPage (FSS of MFSD), shares information on this issue and its prevention.

Good News: February 14, 2020

Welcome to Good News! In this space we feature positive stories of community impact and development, relevant to the areas Metropolitan serves or the programs we offer.

Stalking Awareness Month at FSS of MFSD

Did you know 1 in 6 women and 1 in 17 men have experienced stalking? During Stalking Awareness Month this January, Family Shelter Service of Metropolitan Family Services DuPage worked to educate our communities around the importance of staying informed about this issue.

Welcome Monroe Elementary to Metropolitan’s Community Schools family!

James Monroe Elementary School is the newest addition to Metropolitan’s Community Schools program!

Human Trafficking Awareness Month at the Legal Aid Society

During Human Trafficking Awareness Month in January, the Legal Aid Society of Metropolitan Family Services staff shared their perspectives and key resources throughout the month on the multifaceted work LAS does to combat trafficking, what people should know about it, and how we can all work together to eradicate it.