Community Social Services of Wayne Country (CSSWC), formerly known as Catholic Social Services of Wayne County, opened their doors at both their Hamilton Avenue main office and their Teen Infant Parenting Services (TIPS) location for a packed open house on recent Thursday evening. The open house also celebrated the renaming of CSSWC, which changed the first word of their organization from ‘Catholic’ to ‘Community,’ in an effort to make clearer the fact that they were not only a Catholic organization focused on Catholic based causes, but a Community organization, focused on bettering the community as a whole and helping those in need.
Now, I know I’ve blogged about CSSWC before and I’ve mentioned all of the wonderful things that they do for the community. You can check out the post from their 2013 Leadership dinner and awards for more details on that. The evening started out with a performance by a local children’s choir and afterwards, guests were encouraged to roam the first three levels of the building, stopping by the various areas in the main CSSWC building to learn more about them and what each one contributes to the organization as a whole. There were also delicious hors d’oeuvers that were being served on all three floors for the guests to enjoy, as well as a sweets table set up in one of the rooms that made me gain five pounds just looking at it. I mean, they had Swedish Fish and if you know me, well, you know that is seriously my go-to for delicious snacks. Well, that and a Reese’s peanut butter cup Blizzard from DQ. I swear I only had one Swedish Fish…
The thing that really struck me on this occasion was the Teen Infant Parenting Services (TIPS) facility. They offer a supervised living program for single teen mothers who are between the ages of 16 and 19. TIPS assists with counseling, transitional housing, parenting classes and life skills training as well as a variety of other things. As soon as I arrived for my tour of the living facility, a group of us stopped into one of the vacant apartments for an overview of the individual rooms. I was near the back of the group, having had to catch a last minute ride over to the facility by one of the volunteer transport drivers (who was a retired builder and an all around amazing gentleman to talk to). I was looking at some of the art lining the halls and a head popped out of the doorway across the hall. I was about to meet my first resident! She introduced herself and asked if I would like to come in and see her new apartment. Heavily pregnant, her joy was contagious as she showed me each room and then proudly showed me the crib where her daughter would be sleeping once she arrived. She was so excited for the opportunity that she had with TIPS and was already talking about her future plans of being a parent and going to school for foreign languages and becoming a translator one day. It just warmed my heart, what can I say?
I also received a tour of the rest of the facility, which included a computer/office area, a family room type area with a nice TV and the laundry room and workout area. Seeing these teens thriving in their situation with the help of the TIPS team was just super uplifting. If you’re as impressed as I am with Community Social Services of Wayne County and all that they do and are interested in making a donation to CSSWC, please Contact them directly.
Have a wonderful day and thanks for reading!