REAL LIFE STORIES
A Homeless Veteran Finds Help
Veteran R.L. was found living on the streets in Dutchess County, NY. During WestCOP’s SSVF initial screening process, he was found to be suffering from mental and physical disabilities and would require extensive case management services.
R.L. was immediately referred to the VA, Vet2Vet, and placed on the Veteran's Task Force Master List. After conducting their own screening and assessments, Vet2Vet connected the client to mental health services. In the meantime, WestCOP's SSVF program quickly provided R.L. with EHA services at the Hawthorne Suites in Dutchess County, NY. We rapidly reached out to the VA and within 48 hours, R.L. was contacted by his VA caseworker and shortly after by telehealth. R.L. showed no sign of COVID-19 during his medical review. The veteran's VA caseworker maintains close contact with the client and visits him once a week at the hotel for wellness checks.
FGP Volunteers for 35 Years
Ms. Edwards has spent 35 years volunteering with the Foster Grandparent Program. Undoubtedly, she has left a positive impression on countless kindergartners who passed through the Liberty Central School District. At the age of 100, the only thing that prevents her from working with the children today is the Coronavirus.
Rachel Bayer, one of the classroom teachers she worked with, has many kind words to describe Ms. Alice Edwards. The students 'Grandma Alice' mentored have made significant growth with her unending support. They can identify all 52 letters and sounds, 22 sight words, and many students have excelled to a level 'A' reader. "She was always very loving, incredibly kind, and a hard worker. She came in every day with a big smile and an eager attitude to help the children. Grandma Alice developed such a wonderful relationship with her students. I will miss her very much."
Alice Edwards is FGP's most senior Foster Grandparent. At 100 years old, she is healthy and remains active in our program. She often states that "she will continue to serve the children at Liberty Elementary school for as long as she can." She was given an award for serving 35 years as a Foster Grandparent, our longest-serving volunteer. Her secret to longevity? No smoking and an occasional glass of wine.
We're Still Here
Reaching out to victims of violence
Our stories are varied and unique to each person we reach out to, engage, support, advocate for, counsel, and provide therapy to. The pandemic has caused a major shift in our services delivery systems, but not in our dedication to Helping to Heal.