Turning Point Inc.’s motto is “A Time and Place to Change Your Mind.” The women who come to Turning Point’s Women and Children’s program are there to do just that—... Turning Point Inc.’s motto is “A Time and Place to Change Your Mind.” The women who come to Turning Point’s Women and Children’s program are there to do just that—make a change in their lives and the lives of their children by choosing to break free of their chemical addictions.
“Our participants are coming forward and being proactive about bringing their lifestyles in line with becoming a valuable person in the community and taking responsibility for their motherhood,” said Janet Foreman, program manager at Turning Point. “Addiction impacts your total being, so we treat our clients holistically through their minds, bodies, and spirits.”
Turning Point is an African American social service agency located in North Minneapolis that provides culturally specific treatment, counseling and support groups to chemical substance users and abusers, HIV/AIDS/STD prevention and education to at-risk populations, outreach services to all clients, and women’s outpatient services. All of the counselors at Turning Point are African American. The staff and services available at Turning Point are there to help their clients make the changes they desire.
“I see a real determination in the women who come through our program,” said Foreman. “They are sick and tired of having to always chase that drug. Through treatment they start to get to know themselves again and start feeling what it means to be a woman. They are finally able to get rid of the shame and guilt and begin to develop the tools to survive in this world for themselves and their children.”
A core component of the Women and Children’s program is its supportive housing element that provides women a stable, affordable place to live for up to six months while providing a multitude of supportive services, including chemical addiction treatment, mental health services, individual counseling, parenting skills, transportation, employment assistance, and much more.
“When someone doesn’t have housing or transportation, that becomes their main focus,” said Foreman, who says staff works closely with their clients to help them secure stable affordable housing before they leave the program.
The program has just recently expanded to provide outpatient services to women residing in North Minneapolis who do not live in Turning Point’s supportive housing units. They felt this expansion was necessary because they were finding a greater need for their outpatient services than what their supportive housing program could fill.
Unfortunately, at the same time they are expanding to meet the increased demand, the budget for the Women and Children’s program is in jeopardy. Turning Point receives nearly all of their funding through Hennepin County—whose funding is also being reduced because of shortfalls at the State level.
“We do not know if we can continue to support our Mothers and Children Program because of significant budget cuts,” said Elizabeth Reed, Director of Administration and Programs, who says they are seeking private and other funds to help keep the program funded. “Unfortunately, black females are often at the bottom of the totem pole of funding.”
Reed challenges the black community to be supportive of programs and services in its community. She says one easy way for people to be supportive of Turning Point, Inc. and other similar African American agencies is to designate their United Way gift to a specific organization—thereby targeting their dollars to a specific cause close to home.
Currently there are slots available for the Mother and Children’s Program. To inquire about the program, please contact Greg Jones at 612-520-9181. To learn more about Turning Point, Inc.’s other programs and services, please call 612-520-4004.