Self-Reliance

Mesa United Way’s rigorous Community Investment Process has found these programs and agencies to be fiscally responsible and effective at delivering services. They are receiving Mesa United Way funding for the 2015-16 fiscal year.

The East Valley Women’s Shelter, operated by A New Leaf Inc., is an 8-bed emergency shelter that provides services to help homeless women. Its residents can stay up to 120 days, during which time participants work with support staff to find permanent housing solutions. Besides providing food, shelter and basic needs, EVWS provides case management focused on permanent housing, access to community resources, work assistance and life skills classes and financial coaching.

The American Red Cross – Grand Canyon Chapter helps Mesa residents affected by disasters such as house fires and flooding, providing financial assistance, food, clothing, emergency shelter at motels and bedding. Ninety-eight percent of respondents to a survey of those who received help rated Red Cross services as above average or better.

Community Legal Services Inc.’s Legal Advocacy for Low-Income Mesa Residents program provides free legal services to people facing critical civil legal problems seriously impacting their lives. The aim of the program is to protect the fundamental legal rights of all citizens, regardless of ability to hire an attorney. Cases are tracked to ensure they are satisfactorily closed.

Save the Family Foundation of Arizona’s  Homeless Families Intervention Project helps families in Mesa and throughout the state who find themselves homeless, often due to job loss and/or foreclosure.  The aim of the program is to transition these families from emergency shelters into permanent housing by helping parents acquire job skills that can open the door to good-paying jobs. Primary reasons reported by families for becoming homeless included lack of financial resources to meet their family’s needs, unemployment, and eviction from housing in the community.

House of Refuge in southeast Mesa is a faith-based, non-profit organization that provides transitional housing and supportive services to homeless families. House of Refuge is not only a transitional program, but also a social services and work program. Experienced staff assist every participant in the successful transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency.

St. Joseph the Worker’s mission is to help remove barriers by providing the resources necessary to gain and maintain employment. It offers clients a hand up, not a hand out — building on their strengths and helping to reduce or eliminate any barriers to employment. In fiscal year 2014-15, St. Joseph the Worker helped 2,701 people go back to work, averaging nearly 225 every month, at a starting pay rate of $9.65 an hour. Forty-one percent of the jobs offered benefits.

Marc Community Resources Day Services provides services to children and adults with developmental disabilities and behavioral health challenges who require supervision, support and services during the day and who are unable to work in a supported work environment. The Day Services program provides supervision, support, community inclusion and the skill-building necessary to join the work force and safely utilize community resources to enhance independence. Ninety percent of the participants experienced progress toward goals established in their individual development plans.

Adults with developmental disabilities and behavioral health challenges participate in paid “real work” job training in Marc Center of Mesa Inc.’s Employment Related Services program. The program provides more support services and successfully places individuals into community employment with minimal or no support.

The Salvation Army’s Mesa Citadel Corps provides a range of services – including food boxes, clothing, furniture, medical needs, personal comfort kits, energy assistance, transportation and counseling – to families and individuals in need. Corps staff put clients in touch with other community services where appropriate and also provide a “listening ear” to those who are upset about their circumstances and need to vent to an understanding listener.

Marc Community Resources’s Residential Services provides services to people with disabilities who require 24-hour support. The program provides a range of services that help these individuals achieve the highest levels of health and safety, self-sufficiency and community inclusion. Eighty-five percent of participants were able to maintain or increase their skill levels in the areas of living and socialization.

Veterans for Veterans supplies good quality donated furniture and household items to formerly homeless veterans to help them successfully reenter society.