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Posts categorized under Youth Success Archives - Page 6 of 8 - Human Interests

What a Year! Thank you.

As 2020 comes to a close, I hope you and your loved ones are healthy and as well as one can be in what has surely been one of the more challenging years we have faced as a department. Back in January, we already knew that “change” would be a theme this year. One of the city’s top priorities for the year was to help stand-up and launch the new King County Regional Homelessness Authority (KCRHA). For HSD, this included transitioning our Homeless Strategy and Investment division staff and contracts to a co-location space with their County peers, followed by CEO on-boarding and development of a staffing plan. While that work has been underway all year, little did we know at the start of 2020 that a global pandemic like nothing seen in at least a century was already underway. Not only did that slow the progress of this work, it lead to most employees shifting to work from home, being reassigned, and changing work plans. Plus significant impacts to our economy and unimaginable changes to how each of us conduct our daily lives. With homelessness response transitioning to the KCRHA, our department planned to spend much of the year redefining how it exists within the human services space. HSD planned to work with staff, service providers, and clients to co-create a roadmap for the future. This work launched in February – during Black History Month – with an understanding that race and social justice should underpin everything that we were going to talk about. The public health crisis forced us to pause that work almost immediately. Little did we know the paradigm shift coming in the summer as the support for Black Lives Matter took on new meaning for our general society and millions more people “awoke” to the understanding that it’s time to rethink how we spend our tax dollars and how our governments respond to the needs of the community. HSD staff and our community partners have been a part of the front-line response to COVID-19, pivoting programs and rising to the many challenges to help those most in need. I am deeply proud of the work we have accomplished together during this crisis. Our mission “to connect people with resources and solutions during times of need so we can all live, learn, work, and take part in strong, healthy communities” took on a much greater sense of urgency in 2020, even as we managed our ongoing work.

City of Seattle and United Way of King County Partner on Community Food Fund

Seattle Human Services is partnering with United Way of King County to address food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Community Food Fund invests $1M to support food access among Black, Indigenous and other people of color, as well as immigrant and refugee communities. 27 local organizations across Seattle received… [ Keep reading ]

City of Seattle Reminds Residents and Businesses of Resources Available for COVID-19 Relief, Announces $1.7M in funding to support BIPOC Led Organizations Impacted by the Pandemic

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, the City of Seattle has worked quickly to launch COVID-19 relief programs including rent relief, expanding shelter and services for people experiencing homelessness, grocery vouchers for working families, direct cash assistance for immigrants and refugees, and financial assistance to small businesses. Residents and businesses can find a list of existing COVID-19 relief resources and policies on this website.

Seattle Youth Employment Program Wraps an Unusual Summer

*A shortened version of this article previously appeared in the October edition of HSD’s monthly Lifelines newsletter. Click here to subscribe now. When the Seattle Youth Employment Program (SYEP) launched its new academic year program model last year, certainly no one could have predicted that a worldwide pandemic would impact… [ Keep reading ]

Community is invited to help shape the future of the Safe & Thriving Communities Division

All are invited to join the Seattle Human Service Department’s (HSD) community forum series on the new Safe and Thriving Communities Division). This new division will respond to community requests for the City shift funding away from traditional police, towards investments in community building efforts through nearly $22 million in annual investments. Through the community forums, you will learn about options to direct the work of the new division. Namely, design a hiring process for the new division director and a community structure that shares responsibility for decisions and outcomes.

Thanking Our Partners for Their Commitment to Ending Gender-Based Violence

“Maria” and her young daughter escaped a physically and emotionally abusive relationship. She received assistance from a DV Housing Program while suffering from broken ribs and other injuries caused by her abuser. The individual apartment provided to Maria and her daughter allowed her the time and space to heal from her physical injuries. She was connected to an Advocate who provided emotional and practical support. Once Maria healed enough to focus on next steps, the Advocate supported her in obtaining legal assistance with issues resulting from the abuse, and addressed challenges which impacted her options for more stable housing. Maria received advocacy to help facilitate payment of past housing debt and resolved past legal issues that were barriers to her being housed. She and her daughter participated fully in many of the programs and activities offered by the DV Program, and her family connected with other families who had also experienced similar trauma. Maria and her daughter recently moved into their own apartment, located in an area of town close by social services and programming that she is working with. As Maria moved out from the Housing Program, she expressed her gratitude and said that she was “grateful for the non-judgmental acceptance and support,” and vowed to “help other survivors in the future in whatever path she takes.” Maria continues to receive support from the DV Housing Program in the form of mobile advocacy, client assistance, and rental assistance. With support from the agency, Maria and her daughter are able to find peace, happiness, and new life free from violence. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. It is a time to remember victims/survivors of abuse and exploitation, to raise awareness of violence and its effects on families and communities, and a time to acknowledge and highlight those working to end gender-based violence. This year has been an especially challenging one. While agencies and programs quickly pivoted in response to COVID-19, we have witnessed a rise in reported incidents of gender-based violence and related fatalities both locally and nationally due to social distancing, economic deprivation and related conditions. Those most impacted prior to COVID and during COVID are overwhelmingly marginalized populations: communities of color, GBLTIQ, immigrants and refugees, and those living with disabilities. Maria and her daughter are one of more than 6,000 individuals/families assisted thus far in 2020 by the Seattle-funded network of providers. Our providers work in collaboration to provide wrap around services, including advocacy, counseling, therapeutic services, housing/shelter, legal assistance and representation, and systems improvement. With the “no wrong door” approach, our funded network mirrors the diversity in client population of Seattle-King County in providers and service options. Victim service agencies also participate on committees alongside system partners to assess, identify, plan and address systems needs and gaps, and to ensure that Seattle’s response is seamless. Such committees include: Access to Advocacy, Immigrant and Refugee Network, Peace in the Home, Day One, Coordinated Effort Against Sexual Exploitation (CEASE), Criminal Justice Committee, Domestic Violence Prevention Council (DVPC), and Domestic Violence Intervention Project (DVIP).

‘Prepárate. Hidrátate. / Be Ready. Be Hydrated.’ – Se lanza en Seattle Campaña bilingüe de concientización pública creado por y para la comunidad

El Departamento de Servicios Humanos de Seattle (HSD por sus siglas en inglés) se complace en anunciar una campaña de concientización pública nueva: “Be Ready. Be Hydrated. / Prepárate. Hidrátate.” La campaña promueve opciones saludables para contrarrestar las tácticas de mercadeo dirigidas a los/las jóvenes de color por parte de las bebidas… [ Keep reading ]

Be Ready. Be Hydrated. / Prepárate. Hidrátate. – Bilingual Public Awareness Campaign Created By and For Community Launches in Seattle

The Seattle Human Services Department (HSD) is pleased to announce a new public awareness campaign: “Be Ready. Be Hydrated. / Prepárate. Hidrátate.” The campaign promotes healthy choices to counter sugary beverage marketing tactics aimed at youth of color and is funded by the Seattle Sweetened Beverage Tax (SBT). Background SBT… [ Keep reading ]

Free summer meal program for youth starts July 6th

Seattle children ages 1 through 18 years will enjoy free breakfasts, lunches, and snacks once again this summer through the Seattle Human Services Department’s (HSD) Summer Food Service Program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. From July 6 through August 21, 2020, free meals will be made available at no charge to children across the City.

COVID-19 & Seattle Human Services’ Mission: To connect people with resources and solutions during times of need

Despite the impacts of the COVID-19 public health crisis, the City of Seattle’s Human Services Department continues to live out its mission: To connect people with resources and solutions during times of need so we can all live, learn, work, and take part in strong, healthy communities. The work the department does has changed dramatically, with many employees stepping up to meet new challenges, volunteering, and working long hours. Here is a recap of what the team has been up to.