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Salvation Army has a new plan to fight poverty

By MACKENZIE CLARK
The Kansas City Star

In hopes of curbing generational poverty in the Kansas City area, The Salvation Army on Monday announced a new program called Pathway of Hope.

Partially funded by a $3 million grant from the Hall Family Foundation to be disbursed over three years, Pathway of Hope will focus on families with children. The goal is to discover the root problems preventing families from becoming self-sufficient.

“Our goal is to target families who are repeat emergency assistance applicants, providing long-term case management to help them move beyond crisis to increased stability while building hope at each step,” said Maj. Charles Smith, divisional commander of The Salvation Army in Kansas City, in a news release.

Social workers will provide families with life skills training and resources to address their needs on a case-by-case basis. The organization expects to start the program in September and assist 60 to 80 families a year.

Smith said children who grow up in poverty are 32 times as likely to be in poverty as adults.

In the news release, Angela Andresen McClelland, vice president of the Hall Family Foundation, said the recession led to long-term unemployment and homelessness for many families who never thought they would be in such a vulnerable situation.

“We believe the design of the Pathways of Hope project will allow it to strengthen people in situations of financial crisis, giving families and kids tools to help them reach a place of greater stability,” she said.

To reach Mackenzie Clark, call 816-234-4905 or send email to mclark@kcstar.com.

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