VFW National Home for Children

VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS

DEPARTMENT OF MASSACHUSETTS

vfw nhNational Home Chairman

Keith M. Jackson

51 Edward Road

Townsend, Massachusetts 01469

(978) 597-0087

 

VFW National Home for Children

“The National Home gave us a second chance, which has turned into a whole new beginning for our family.” ~National Home client

How We Help

Families who need a fresh start can live in the safe and peaceful environment of the VFW National Home for Children campus community for up to four years and benefit from numerous community supports, including professional case management services, on-site licensed child care, life skills training, tutoring and other educational services, as well as recreational and community service opportunities.

Recognizing that the effects of war can last for generations, the National Home’s campus community is open to families of active-duty military personnel, veterans and descendants of members of the VFW and its Ladies Auxiliary.

Residents must be committed to making changes in their lives, and each family who lives at the National Home is assigned a case manager to help them set and work towards family goals. To remain at the National Home, families are expected to demonstrate consistent progress toward those goals. We work in partnership with the whole family to help them reach their full potential.

For specific questions about applying to live at the National Home, please call our Helpline at 800.313.4200 or email help@vfwnationalhome.org.

 ServicesFamilies and children living on the National Home campus have access to a variety of on-campus support services, including:

Child Care – Early Childhood Education

The VFW Ladies Auxiliary Nursery is home to the National Home’s on-site early childhood education program. At the Nursery, children up to six years of age receive high-quality care in a safe and nurturing environment designed with them in mind. National Home residents can utilize the facility at no cost while working or attending school.

Built in 1945, the Ladies Auxiliary Nursery is a full-service, state-licensed child care facility with classrooms for infants, toddlers and preschool/school-age children. Teachers work closely with parents and one another to help each individual child reach his or her full potential, and parents are encouraged to take an active role in their child’s development. Staff publish a monthly newsletter and hold regular parent-teacher conferences to keep parents up to date on their children’s activities and development.

Education Services – The Education Department at the VFW National Home for Children strives to help residents of all ages ‘turn on the lights’ through student-centered programming that is focused on building a sense of duty to self, family, school and community. Throughout the school year, education staff, and volunteers work closely with local schools, Clinical Services, parents, and others who are invested in the success of National Home students. Help is available to all age groups, from preschool through college and beyond.

Services Provided are:

Tutoring – Education staff work one-on-one with students in areas where they may need help. This can include organization, study skills, reading, math, setting academic goals, homework, and preparing for standardized tests. All residents, including adults, can utilize the Education Department as a resource to help them succeed in the classroom, workplace, and in life.

Computer Lab – The computer lab is open for residents to use after school and in the summer under the supervision of Education staff and volunteers. Residents can use computers for homework, job hunting, online courses, email or just for fun.

Library – Our library contains a large collection of books and audio-visual materials. Children can check out books and take them home with them, or use the quiet library area for study or leisure reading.

Summer Enrichment Program – The National Home’s Summer Enrichment Program ensures that learning doesn’t stop when the school year ends. Participants learn about topics from astronomy to zoology through field trips, team projects and hands-on learning opportunities.

Science Lab – The science lab is the newest addition to the Education Department.  It is used during Summer Program and throughout the rest of year during science nights. Residents are able to explore geology, astronomy, microbiology, and many other science topics through use of the equipment and Internet access in the lab. This space also serves as an auxiliary study area.

Recreation – Promoting fun, friendship and fitness is the goal of the VFW National Home for Children’s Recreation Department. The staff plans and hosts a variety of physical and life-long learning activities throughout the year and strives to promote physical health, social skills and decision-making strategies in a fun environment.

On campus, the Recreation Department manages the Community Center and Gymnasium and hosts numerous activities, including open hours for indoor and outdoor recreation, arts and crafts, and weight training. Residents are encouraged to play an active role in the events and activities that take place, including organizing basketball games, pool tournaments, and other events.

The Recreation Department also sponsors a variety of off-campus activities and field trips, including trips to the local pool, bowling alley, skating rink, and adventures further afield to amusement parks and camping trips.

Recreation staff manages the National Home’s participation in the Eaton County 4-H Program. Resident’s ages 9-19 years old can participate by raising a rabbit or hog to show at the Eaton County Fair in July of each year. Animals are raised at the Montana Farmstead on the National Home campus.

Life Skills Training – The Teen Life Skills Program at the VFW National Home for Children provides education, mentoring, and hands-on experiences for children aged 12-19. The program is designed to help these youths develop a wide range of practical life skills. They have the opportunity to attend themed events throughout the year, and attend individual sessions with National Home staff and occasional guest speakers. This program helps provides a solid foundation for these youths as they continue on their path towards adulthood and beyond.

Adults living at the National Home also have access to a variety of classes and support groups, aimed at enhancing their life skills. Topics vary based on interest and can include:

  • Financial management
  • Parenting
  • Household management
  • Healthy relationships
  • And others

Community Service – Service is an essential part of the growth process at the VFW National Home for Children. Residents take part in activities that involve service to the local community, visiting museums, writing letters and visiting veterans in hospitals and many other community and civic-minded activities to help the residents be mindful of the need to give back through service. Some past community service activities undertaken by National Home residents include:

  • Renovated Veterans Memorial Section of Rose Hill Cemetery in Eaton Rapids
  • Walked in Memorial Day Parade
  • Placed grave flags with VFW members at a local cemetery
  • Served lunch at a local church shelter
  • Volunteered at the Lansing Habitat for Humanity affiliate
  • Traveled to the VFW National Convention
  • Raised the flag at a house dedication
  • Hosted an Easter Party for a ward at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center
  • Visited the Gerald R. Ford Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Met with a Michigan Senator at the Capitol Building
  • Threw a Valentine’s Day Party at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center
  • Visited the Holocaust Memorial Center in Detroit, Michigan with a VFW member
  • Sent Christmas cards to veterans at the Ann Arbor Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Center
  • Performed a play about veterans at the National Home Veterans Day Ceremony

HELPLINE

“Many people are surprised by what a difference a simple phone call can make. We work with callers for as long as it takes to help them improve their situation.”

~National Home social worker

 800-313-4200

help@vfwnationalhome.org

The National Home Helpline is the first step on the path to help for military and veteran families. This free service offers information, creates connections and gives hope to struggling families across the country. It can also serve as the first step to living at the National Home.

Our Helpline is staffed by a dedicated team of caring, listening professionals who will work directly with you to help you find solutions to your pressing issues and concerns. Our resources go beyond community connections and traditional supportive services to include VFW Posts, Departments and Veterans Service Officers across the country.

Our Helpline is answered Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time, except holidays. Messages left after hours are answered the next business day.

Family Program

 “The National Home gave us a second chance, which has turned into a whole new beginning for our family.” ~National Home client

 Military and veteran families who need a fresh start can live in the safe and peaceful environment of the VFW National Home for Children campus community for up to four years and have access to numerous community supports.

Families live in single-family homes in a neighborhood-like setting and benefit from supportive services like professional case managers, on-site licensed child care, life skills training, tutoring and other educational services, and numerous recreational and community service opportunities.

Who we serve – Recognizing that the effects of war can last for generations, the National Home’s campus community is open to families of active-duty military personnel, veterans and descendants of members of the VFW and its Ladies Auxiliary.

In accepting families to our program, we ask only one thing of them: They must be committed to making changes in their lives. To remain at the National Home, they are expected to demonstrate consistent progress toward family goals. Together, in partnership with the whole family, we are dedicated to helping each family reach its full potential.

Supportive Services for Residents

Families residing at the VFW National Home for Children live in single-family homes and have access to a strong network of supportive services, both on our campus and in the greater community. We consider the needs of all family members during the length of their stay and offer life-changing opportunities for all ages.

Professional case management services assist the entire family in establishing and accomplishing specific goals. Case managers facilitate community connections for specialized needs.

Our youngest residents and their parents benefit from our on-site, licensed child care center, offering high-quality care in an educational environment for infants and children under six years old.

Our Education Department offers residents of all ages services like tutoring, mentoring and specialized enrichment programs with access to libraries, a computer lab and more.

Adults and teens can enhance their life skills in areas such as finances, parenting, healthy relationships, housekeeping, job seeking and job retention through a variety of classes offered both on- and off-campus.

Recreational activities, service opportunities, trips and special events foster a sense of community and togetherness, enriching the family experience.

 

NEWSLETTER

 

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Join online: http://www.vfwnationalhome.org/page.aspx?pid=519

MEMBERSHIP

 

Join the VFW National Home for Children family! Become a Life Member or an Associate Life Member and create a lasting bond between yourself and the mission of the National Home.

 

There are two types of membership:

  • VFW and Ladies Auxiliary members and organizations are eligible to become Life Members. Life Members may vote for the trustees who represent their National Home District and approve any proposed changes to our bylaws and articles of incorporation.
  • Any individual or organization wishing to support the National Home’s mission can become an Associate Life Member. Associate Life Members do not have voting privileges.

 

Both member types receive a membership certificate and wallet card. Life Member Pins can also be purchased for an additional $5.

 

Join online: http://www.vfwnationalhome.org/get-involved-main

Membership Form: http://www.vfwnationalhome.org/document.doc?id=29

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