Families come in all shapes and sizes, and form the foundation of every community. Strong families are essential to building and maintaining a strong community. In the Greater Birmingham area, about 39% of families with children in the home live below the federal poverty level - with single mother-led households being at even higher risk of experiencing poverty. The Lotus Family Support program centers on providing families with a variety of support services such as parenting classes, conflict mediation, co-parenting support, and youth development programs.
The Lotus Family Support program includes various supportive services tailored to each family's unique needs and circumstances. Parenting classes focus on topics specific to issues parents may encounter as their children reach each developmental milestone and stage of life. We will also offer classes designed specifically for co-parenting families and families impacted by the justice system or substance abuse. Conflict mediation, communication workshops, seminars focused on supporting fathers and their relationships with their kids, and other supportive services are also available.
Youth development and enrichment programming designed to support young people in the establishment of positive life and interpersonal skills rounds out the community offerings in this department. Mental and emotional wellness workshops focusing on topics such as healthy communication and coping techniques, how to deal with stigmas around mental illness and seeking mental healthcare, and guidance on how to build healthy romantic relationships are available, with topics being scheduled in response to input from the youth themselves.
In addition to the career training and educational opportunities connected to the Urban agriCULTURE Initiative, additional opportunities will be provided to youth to expose them to a wide variety of career paths and ways in which to continue their education beyond high school. Mentorship programming that partners youth with young professionals in their fields of interest (including entrepreneurship) are available in an effort to address the disparity seen in shadowing and internship opportunities for students living in under-resourced neighborhoods and school systems in comparison to their peers in more affluent communities.
Lotus Family Support programming will be routinely evaluated and adjusted to meet the needs of the community, based on feedback gathered from program participants as well as from those community members who may not already be engaged with Lotus but would be interested in doing so if additional programs and services were launched that fit their needs.
Co-Parenting Support & Mediation
Fatherhood Support Initiative
Youth Development & Mentorship Programming