What is the Step Forward Program?
When we started Alongside You, the dream was to provide our services to anyone in need of help, regardless of their income. We’ve always had a sliding fee scale for our services, but we quickly realized that even our lower fees were out of reach for some. We started the Step Forward Program in response to this need.
Throughout the year, we do some fundraising, public events, and public speaking and all of the funds received go into a separate fund we’ve set up where we can draw funds to subsidize our services for those who need some extra help.
In 3 short years, we’ve provided over $200,000 in subsidized services, and we have never turned anyone away because of money. This is our goal. What we’re realizing, however, is that demand is increasing and our fund needs to increase to support this work.
Now, we’re working on growing the Step Forward Program and we need the help of the community.
Years Providing Services
Number of Staff Involved
Value of Services Provided Through the Program
Who Do We Help With Our Step Forward Program?
The clients we help through our Step Forward Program are diverse. Here’s a small picture of some of the wide range of clients we serve.
Clients at High Risk for Suicide
We work with many clients who have recent suicide attempts and/or are coming to us straight from an inpatient stay at a psychiatric facility. As you might imagine, most of these clients are struggling financially, and often are not able to maintain employment due to the severity of their illness.
Individuals on Income Assistance
We work with many clients on income assistance who struggle to make ends meet on a monthly basis. Services are this population are limited, and we are trying to fill this gap and meet the need.
Single parent families
We work with many single-parent families who are working at supporting their families as best they can as they go through changes.
Individuals struggling with substance misuse
We work with individuals and families struggling with substance misuse. We do the early work, provide referrals to treatment centres when necessary, and work with them when they come back from treatment and are working on their recovery. Recovery is a full time endeavour and some are not able to maintain employment at times, particularly early in the recovery process.
At Risk Youth
We work with at risk youth, many who do not have anywhere else to turn, are being subjected to abuse in one form or another, or who are not supported by their families in asking for help. Our program allows them to seek help safely, and in confidence.