How do we help those who feel overwhelmed by life? WrapAround is a strength-based planning process that has been tried and tested throughout the province and in other parts of Canada, the United States and the world.
In Shalem’s WrapAround program, one paid staff position supports the efforts of trained volunteers who donate their time to journey with an individual or family who is asking for help. Our ultimate wish for all of those with whom we engage is to help them navigate the various systems and ensure that they don’t fall through the cracks.
Since 2009, WrapAround has welcomed the partnership of Mohawk College’s Social Service Worker (SSW) program. While providing a learning opportunity for students of this program, we are also able to provide continuity to those involved in the wraparound process. As the current chair of the SSW Advisory, I become aware of the number of other Christian organizations who are recognizing and meeting the needs of those most vulnerable in our community.
We are proud of our core group of volunteers and partners—Alana, Libby, Marilyn, Helen and Lindsay as well as Beth from Stoney Creek United Church and Krista from Neighbour to Neighbour. These volunteers will be providing a “GO TO” role, utilizing the “Quik Wrap” process.
Quik Wrap is a process in which we target one priority need with an individual or family, allowing us to work with more people. Through this, we hope to raise the profile of the journey our committed volunteers take, walking alongside those who want change.
So how does it work? Meet Jane, who comes in with her friend Ron. As we meet, we learn that Jane’s most pressing need is for employment. Jane hasn’t had to search for a job in more than 20 years and doesn’t know where to start. She received a settlement from her employer because she was injured at work, but she only has a high school education, which is limiting her job possibilities.
Jane could use support to develop a plan. We talk about what she does well and with the support of her WrapAround volunteer, she engages with a local employment service. Jane has scheduled appointments with employment counsellors, is comfortable and is able to move forward. The outcome is she is able to find employment and keep her home. This is what our “GO TO’s” hope to do throughout the city.
Stay tuned as we roll out this new opportunity with the help of our dedicated trained volunteers. And we welcome new volunteers to join us in this work! For information about volunteer opportunities, contact Mary Charles at 905-528-0353.
Through WrapAround and Quik Wrap experiences, we create “Community—One Individual and Family at a time!” The domino effect of our wrapping around people has long lasting effects.