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Westside Holistic Family Services is a Christian, community-based, human service agency that seeks to minister to individuals in the context of the family using a holistic approach to foster physical, economic, psychological, educational and spiritual well-being.The agency administers various high quality programs and social services to residents that address their whole person needs with dignity and respect, and as a result, empower individuals and families to a greater level of self-sufficiency.
The Westside Holistic Family Services Center is a one-stop-shop provision of services by qualified service providers from both the non-profit and private sectors that address a variety of community needs from one convenient location. The One-Stop-Shop service center is a vital link in the stability and well-being of Austin residents as a hub for interactive programs and social services, as well as community news and resource networking.
WHFS tenant service providers include: The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), Hartgrove Hospital Outpatient Clinic, Austin Counseling Center, Park National Bank, City of Chicago WIC Services, Circle Family Care Health Clinic, Chicago Municipal Employees Credit Union, Rishi Pharmacy, Austin Dental Center, Crossroads OB/GYN Clinic, four private family practice physicians and an Illinois State Representative office.
WHFS operates its programs and services from four major divisions: COUNSELING SERVICES (Individual, family and group counseling; Parenting classes; Youth ex-offender re-entry services); CHILD & YOUTH SERVICES (Teen Reach After-school; Foster Care Services); HEALTH EDUCATION & CASE MANAGEMENT (Family Case Mgmt for pregnant women & infants thru 1st year of life; Teen Parent Services; HIV Prevention & Education) and EDUCATIONAL SERVICES (Head Start; Westside Alternative High School). Westside Holistic Family Services (WHFS) is accredited by the Council On Accreditation (COA), a member of United Way of Metropolitan Chicago and the National Child Welfare League of America.
The following is a description of WHFS program services:
Teen Reach After-School Program is a year-round program offering tutoring and homework assistance, life skills workshops and video presentations, cultural/educational field trips, recreational activities and community service for youth ages 6 to 17 from local elementary and high schools in the Austin and West Garfield communities during after-school hours.
Head Start Program provides early childhood educational services for low-income children age 3 to 5 years old. The program teaches an early literacy and pre-math computer curriculum and delivers a comprehensive and socially interactive classroom format in which children also receive instruction in personal hygiene, socialization, discipline, and organization in order to prepare for transition to kindergarten.
Westside Alternative High School provides an alternative academic curriculum approved by the Illinois State Board of Education and nationally accredited by the North Central Association designed for high school dropouts or those expelled from the public school system that are now serious about continuing their education. The program helps youth overcome the social and emotional barriers to learning in order to receive their high school diploma or GED, continue on to college and/or pursue a career.Counseling Services provides licensed clinical counseling for individual, group, marital, family, youth ex-offender re-entry (13-22) and crisis intervention to help people of all ages manage the psychological and social adjustments needed to deal with difficult life issues. Treatment plans are customized to address a variety of issues such as child abuse/neglect, family conflicts, domestic violence, sexual abuse, depression, and grief in order for individuals to manage their lives in a more healthy and productive manner. The program also interns masters-level college students.
Foster Care Services (Traditional HMR) Offers placement or substitute care for abused/neglected children through a contract with the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) for children age 0 to 18. The program also offers permanency for children through adoption and subsidized care and licenses and approves foster homes.
Family Case Management provides pregnant women with case management support services throughout their pregnancy and first year of infant life. FCM strives to ensure that pregnant women of all ages, regardless of income, receive nutritional information and quality pre-natal / pediatric care for themselves and their infants. Pre-natal nutrition, Child-birthing instruction, Baby showers and Parenting classes, are also provided.
Teen Parent Services (TPS) provides teenage parents with a variety of case management resources to ensure high school re-enrollment and completion, while addressing employment preparation and childcare needs.HIV Prevention and Education provides HIV prevention education through street outreach, informational workshops, conducting HIV Orasure testing, case management and referrals to medical support services. The program seeks to decrease the number of residents infected with the HIV virus and to help maintain or improve the quality of life for those living with HIV.
- Gale Lindo
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