Mary Danakas Response to Love Center Sisters Care Center, being a program within the Response to Love Center, acts as a referral center for our clients with various community agencies. We offer free case management to our client base which is diverse and resides in a significantly impoverished community on the East Side of Buffalo, New York. Sisters Care Center is dedicated to a positive holistic approach for the health and wellness of our clients.
Sisters Care Center continues with its original mission of being a truly client-driven program and a client-centered program. In other words they (the client) drive what we provide.
As continues to be the case here on the East Side of Buffalo, transportation is a great problem for the majority of our clients. Therefore, being able to provide such a wide variety and necessary agency representatives as well as offering many educational and informational workshops on site has been invaluable for our clients.
Sisters Care Center has a three-fold focus:
First and foremost, to meet with the clients and access their needs and concerns. It is important that the client feels that they are being heard and that at that moment someone cares about them and is willing to assist and advocate for them. This could take the form of acting as a community liaison and referring the client to the necessary and appropriate community agency or health service provider either by way of providing them with informational brochures, making a phone call on their behalf to schedule an appointment, or in some cases acting as an advocate on their behalf.
The last two focuses are closely connected with each other. We offer a holistic approach and coordinate a series of workshops, speakers, and agency representatives to provide information and answer questions on a variety of topics and issues encompassing the mind, body, spiritual, and social aspects of our clients.
As we all know, guidelines and eligibility requirements are continuously changing, especially when it comes to medical care, food stamps, housing, and any of the many government administered programs. This is why it is imperative to have, with some consistency, representatives who have the specific knowledge and are specifically trained in dealing with a particular program or service.
The clients clearly enjoy the workshops and learn a lot from them. Our thoughts for moving ahead are to hold a series of particular themed workshops throughout 2015. Our plan is to hold themed progressive workshops two to three times a year. In other words, we have already conducted a basic banking workshop, therefore, we will continue with this topic and in the spring offer a workshop on budgeting, and then perhaps four months later hold another banking related workshop on savings, etc. This way the topic is not simply covered once for a half-hour, but the information and tools can be repeated, reinforced, and expanded upon. Similarly we would like to do a series with Home Depot dealing with basic home improvements, such as basic plumbing, etc.
The clients have really come to appreciate being able to personally speak face-to-face with the representative of a particular agency that they might have had concerns with or haven’t been able to get in touch with. There is nothing better than actually having a person standing in front of you that can provide you with the answers to your specific questions and set of circumstances.
Additionally, it has proven very helpful that the clients are able to personally review information or inquire about various requirements when it comes to an application and be instructed as to what else may be required as opposed to going downtown and waiting three hours to be told that your application cannot be processed because you are missing the following documents and/or information.
Lastly, our clients are most grateful when they can simply submit the application directly to the representative here at the Center while waiting to eat lunch or picking up their food pantry bag.
Moving forward, our goal is to continue to expand upon the programs offered while encompassing a truly holistic approach for the physical, intellectual, spiritual, and social aspects of our clients. Sisters Care Center will continue to provide a variety of high-quality workshops, speakers, and agency representatives that is dedicated to the positive health, wellness, and future of our clients and their families. To see a list of our Community Affiliations CLICK HERE.