Counseling agencies get funds for one-stop hub

WATERTOWN — The Resolution Center of Jefferson and Lewis Counties, Inc. and Family Counseling Service of Northern New York, Inc. have formed an alliance to share personnel, reduce operational overlap, streamline and expedite client referrals, and expand services while uniting in one location by Aug. 1.

With funds secured from the Northern New York Community Foundation, the Jane E. Deline Foundation and Watertown Savings Bank, the two organizations will create a one-stop hub for conflict intervention, counseling, child advocacy and restorative practices.

According to a release, this unique collaborative model leverages the strengths of each nonprofit while focusing on the socioemotional development of entire families instead of customary transactional referrals for individuals, while stretching extremely limited funding resources.

“We applaud these two vital community organizations for having the foresight and courage to take this important step,” said Rande Richardson, NNYCF executive director. “As we have in the past, we want to be there for them now so they can become stronger and provide their services more efficiently and effectively in the future.”

Collectively under one roof, the two nonprofits can serve a greater number of clients faster and at a lower cost to the community, in part, through a force of over 40 trained, credentialed adult and youth volunteers that provide direct service in addition to staff.

Based on increasing local need for timely mental and emotional health services — especially during the COVID-19 health pandemic — the importance of keeping families and businesses out of the court systems, and the potential a one-stop center could deliver, the release stated that the Northern New York Community Foundation awarded a $20,000 grant and the Jane E. Deline Foundation $10,000. Watertown Savings Bank donated $5,000.

“We are happy to help and pleased to see the agencies move in this direction,” said Mark Lavarnway, president and CEO of Watertown Savings Bank. “I think you are the leaders in what likely will become more of a trend in the not-for-profit world as we move forward.”

By Aug. 1, the Resolution Center and Family Counseling will move offices to Watertown’s Rouse Building, 531 Washington St., Suite 4124, which is being renovated at no cost by Jake Johnson and Jake Johnson Properties, LLC. Mr. Johnson and his business partners recently purchased the building and an open house and volunteer appreciation ceremony is being scheduled for September.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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