HELPING PEOPLE OVERCOME THE
CYCLE OF POVERTY ONE FAMILY AT A TIME
There is no single, magic pill to take a person out of the cycle of poverty. There is no service or organization that provides everything a person would need to achieve prosperity and stability. Like anything worth achieving in life, escaping from poverty takes vision, a plan, a lot of hard work and a comprehensive gathering of needed supports.
For those living in poverty, many of those crucial elements are missing. Many times all that’s left in their place are negative voices and forces that can drive a person or a family deeper into poverty. That’s why UACDC created the STEPS for Success® program and its core elements:
Impoverished individuals and families referred by social workers, case managers and members of our Partners Coalition of over 70 organizations are able to apply to take part in the program. Those vetted through the application process and deemed viable participants are invited to take part in an intensive interview process with an Assessment Team made up of local health, human and social service providers. Only then is a person entered into the STEPS for Success® program.
The STEPS for Success® program consists of three key planning tools:
• Prescription for Prosperity – Based on each participant’s application and interview responses, the Assessment Team creates the initial “Prescription for Prosperity.” The Prescription could include a pathway to a new career, to college or to entrepreneurship. It will identify barriers and gaps as well as include suggestions for continuing adult education, life improvements and network needs. The Prescription is a starting point, and should always be seen as a living document, not something carved in stone. Its purpose is to be a baseline for the Individualized Goal Plan.
• Individualized Goal Plan (IGP) – The IGP is a document that grows out of the Prescription for Prosperity. It includes specific goals for life improvements with deadlines as well as strategies for addressing barriers and gaps identified in the Prescription. The IGP is managed and updated monthly by the individual as well as their network in the Network of Support meetings.
• Network of Support – Based on the barriers and gaps identified throughout the process, the Assessment Team helps the individual assemble the appropriate Network of Support. The network is made up of the individual (Network Leader), peers (Network Peers), mentors from the local business/professional community, service providers and UACDC staff (Network Navigator). The network meets every 6 to 8 weeks to discuss progress on goals in the IGP as well as any adjustments that should be made. The network also connects the participant to any needed services as other challenges and needs arise over time.