Neighborhood House Programs
Safety Net and Self-Sufficiency
NH provides a comprehensive response to the self-sufficiency challenges facing our clients with a flexible continuum of housing and supportive services. Intensive case management addresses barriers, but also provides emotional support to clients as they overcome hurdles such as accessing health care, or locating affordable, permanent housing. Our bilingual team offers a range of emergency services including rent, utility and food assistance and support components (housing advocacy, eviction prevention, transportation (bus tokens, van service, etc.) and child care.
Child and Youth Development
We serve pregnant mothers, infants, toddlers, pre-schoolers and their families through Early Head Start, Head Start, the Parent Child Home Program and Play and Learn. For young people 5-18 we offer a range of programs to address varied needs and interests. Some concentrate on academic achievement, others support foundational skills for leadership or career exploration as well as school-based services for middle schoolers.
Our employment services staff speaks seven languages, providing the essential linguistic/cultural bridge to help limited English speaking job seekers. A strong focus is on making job training accessible and relevant. We meet people where they are and provide training on the range of skills necessary for job success, including job readiness taught through the lens of a particular industry sector, and support to strengthen English skills.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
Since our start as a settlement house, Neighborhood House has understood that the best way to address poverty was to live and work within the communities we served. That philosophy continues to inform our work today, with all of our neighborhood centers located within low-income communities in Seattle and King County. We continue to expand our reach into underserved areas in South King County. In 2011 we expanded to the Birch Creek Center in Kent where we offer employment, ESL, citizenship and tutoring services. This past year we were able to expand our Parent Child Home Program so that we could meet the needs of low income families living in Tukwila. Most recently, we added an additional site to our afterschool tutoring program at Firwood Circle in Auburn.
2012 also brought the creation of our new Housing Stability Division. This division integrates housing assistance with employment services and eviction prevention support. Using a Housing First framework, we move homeless families and individuals into permanent housing and provide them with comprehensive support and training so that they can access living wage jobs, and increase thier financial independence and self-sufficiency.
Our communities are extremely diverse, with barriers beyond language impeding full community participation. Immigrants and refugees face historic challenges to engaging in civic activities, as many come from countries where civic action or speaking out can result in prison or worse. In this time of accelerated economic pressures, there is a high need to build resident skill and leadership to identify solutions to help low income families meet their needs for safety, strong schools and economic advancement.