Reconnecting broken, damaged families

Published 6:00 pm Thursday, February 12, 2009

Shelby County’s Family Connection opened as an emergency shelter 33 years ago. It continues to fulfill its mission of strengthening communities by strengthening youth and families.

Initially known as Shelby Youth Services and Attention Home, they began serving at-risk children and youth. A school counseling program began six years later due to the increasing number of students and families requesting counseling assistance. Through this program, a counselor was available to go into the public schools and provide counseling assistance to children and youth in crisis.

The agency then expanded its shelter services to assist runaway and homeless youth. Three years later Family Connection purchased 22-acres of land and built an 18-bed facility that included the administrative offices as well. In 2004, the Community Counseling Center was completed and currently houses the RECONNECT Project, administrative offices and community events.

Family Connection operates a violence-reduction program in Shelby County schools and Project Safe Place, a national crisis prevention program for children and teens.

They receive funding from multiple sources and are affiliated with numerous professional networks. Last year alone, Family Connection provided services to almost 400 children and/or families.

Upcoming fundraising events for Family Connection include the sale of begonia baskets for Easter. The baskets will be $20 each and will be delivered prior to Easter.

Family Connection will also host their 29th–annual Golf Tournament on Monday, June 1 at Riverchase Country Club. Players and sponsors are needed.

For more information, call 663-6301.