Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Public Invited to General Council Meeting

Sussex County residents are invited to attend one of two meetings of the newly-formed Project Sussex Kids, the County Council for Young Children designed by the New Jersey Department of Children & Families to address the needs of local families who are expecting or who are parenting children up to the age of eight.  The meetings of the Project Sussex Kids General Council will be held at Project Self-Sufficiency on Wednesday, July 1st, at 9:00 a.m. and again at 6:00 p.m., in order to maximize opportunities for participation by the general public.  Project Self-Sufficiency is located at 127 Mill Street in Newton.

County Councils for Young Children are being established in all of the state’s 21 counties to bring together parents, caregivers, as well as health, education and social service professionals to enhance communication, coordination and collaboration of services.  The meetings of the General Council are designed to gather information from area residents about their concerns.

“Project Self-Sufficiency is honored to be the lead coordinating agency for this community partnership in Sussex County,” remarked Haley McCracken, Coordinator of the Sussex County Council for Young Children program at Project Sussex County.  “We are looking forward to creating an environment where Sussex County parents and families can come together with providers to identify and discuss issues which impact the health, education and well-being of all of our children.”

Several projects are in the works already, including the creation of a comprehensive resource guide and an interactive website.  Plans to work alongside childcare centers and preschools are being developed.

In addition to joining the General Council, the agency is currently seeking volunteers to join workgroups to identify community needs.  Groups will meet locally to seek input about health and wellness, safety, community events and other topics.  The groups will be divided according to the age or needs of the children in the family, including prenatal, special needs, families of infants, toddlers and preschool-aged children, families of school-aged children, and Spanish-speaking families.  To facilitate participation, meetings will be held regionally in Newton, Sussex, Vernon, Hopatcong, Ogdensburg and Montague. 

Project Self-Sufficiency is a private non-profit community-based organization dedicated to improving the lives of low-income families residing in northwestern New Jersey. The agency’s mission is to provide a broad spectrum of holistic, respectful, and comprehensive services enabling low-income single parents, teen parents, two-parent families, and displaced homemakers to improve their lives and the lives of their children through the achievement of personal and economic self-sufficiency and family stability. Since 1986 Project Self-Sufficiency has served more than 20,000 families, including over 30,000 children. 

To volunteer to participate in one of the Project Sussex Kids workgroups or to find out more information about the programs and services offered by Project Self-Sufficiency, visit www.projectselfsufficiency.org or call 973-940-3500.