A Letter from our Director
Letter from SAFE Director
This time last year SAFE (then Lazarus Project) had to ask the counselors working for us to either stop seeing clients or work for free. That’s when we had our first fundraiser – the breakfast – which raised enough money to pay our back debts and to pay for counselors for a few more months. We could not stop raising money though and were able to simply stay a month or two ahead.
In the spring of 2012, when the Wal-Mart Foundation heard about how we were managing month-to-month even while our client level was jumping by leaps and bounds, they decided to offer us a one-year special grant.
They were concerned that we were not having the time we needed to develop a funding stream and they were also concerned because the only office staff we had at the time to help me were interns. My salary paid by the United Methodist Church because my main job was as a campus minister. During times when school was not in, I was the only office staff and the client load was increasing exponentially.
So, the Walmart Foundation made a one time offer to provide for a halftime social worker in the office for one year and to pay for counseling during that time so that I, as the SAFE director could work with our board members to develop a local, sustainable funding stream.
We’re beginning our fall campaign to try to do just that. We would like to say we have no need to ask for moneys but that is simply not the case. We continue to strive to find grants and we continue to need to find local donors both individuals and churches that will help us continue to serve this population.
Since the beginning of this year our client level has more than doubled. We are bringing on two more counselors and we are looking to bring on two more in May of 2013. From what we are seeing, Soldiers, veterans and family members in our community will need counseling for several more years even if we ended deployments from Fort Campbell next year.
We are seeing a number of children, college students and family members as well as active duty and all of them are struggling under the strain and stress of multiple deployments and more than a decade of war. We need the community to step up to help us guarantee our military and families do not feel forgotten.
Thank you for your continued support in our work toward welcoming home our warriors and their families, & helping them start their journey towards healing.
Rev. Jodi McCullah
Soldiers And Families Embraced