Despite the affluence of DuPage County, the number of people living below or just above the federal poverty level in the county has grown substantially over the past 10 years. The challenges that face people living on modest incomes are seen both in practical needs and stress-related mental health difficulties. Outreach’s family stabilization programs address these issues.
Case managers assist local residents in resolving a variety of crisis situations including financial issues, potential loss of housing, emergency food, legal matters and navigating public systems such as public aid. After an initial needs assessment is conducted, case managers walk alongside the individual or family as they work on solutions that resolve the initial crisis and achieve long-term stability. Budgeting, financial literacy workshops and counseling on solving practical problems help to bring stability to the family for the future. Case managers also provide referrals to other helpful resources.
Community Counseling Centers
Outreach has embedded a counseling center within each of our neighborhood resource centers, providing family, individual and couples counseling. Therapists address a variety of concerns, including anxiety; depression; anger; grief and loss or trauma; family conflicts; problems for children related to school, home or community; and many other questions around emotional, spiritual or relational goals. Outreach’s counseling approach is collaborative, utilizing the strengths and assets that each person brings to his or her situation. We work from a Christian perspective, although we welcome clients whose faith traditions differ from our own. Counseling is provided on a sliding-fee scale.
Psychological testing is provided through Outreach’s Community Counseling Centers, for children and adults living throughout DuPage County.
Wheaton Youth Outreach (WYO) serves youth who are at risk of involvement in the child welfare and/or the juvenile justice system. WYO works with youth who have run away from home or have been locked out of their home by their parents. This program’s goal is to stabilize the family structure so that the youth can return home. WYO also prevents youth ages 13-18 from entering the Illinois Department of Corrections and assists them in becoming productive members of society. Finally, WYO strives to improve the school attendance of chronically truant youth and add stability to their family life. WYO partners with schools in Wheaton, Carol Stream, Warrenville, West Chicago and Glen Ellyn, counseling students to prevent further crisis.
Older Adult Services
The Outreach Community Center in Carol Stream offers services that strengthen and support the older adults living in the neighborhood surrounding the Center. Anyone age 60 and over is welcome to participate in case management services that assist with practical needs and attend regular social activities that bring older adults together to reduce the sense of isolation through friendship and fun.
The Friendly Visiting Program provides friendship and assistance to older adults. Volunteers are matched in one-on-one relationships to connect regularly with an older adult through playing cards, grocery shopping, dining out, attending church activities or visiting their apartment.