Berkshire Eagle, 2/19   A Look Back At A Year of Helping Berkshire Families

Do you want to make lasting changes in our community? As we approach 2019, it’s rewarding to look back and see the impact we made together this year.

Long-time south county homeowner, Ellen Rudley, drove by the Community Health Program (CHP) office in Great Barrington numerous times without noticing the building or more importantly, without knowing what happens inside.

That changed the day Rudley walked through the door of CHP; in fact, she was completely blown away. Rudley was there to see CHP’s Parent-Child Home Program in action as a Berkshire United Way volunteer. As she witnessed the wonderful work they are doing, and benefit to young children and their families, she had an epiphany. While her gift to Berkshire United Way isn’t nearly enough to support this, or any other program, once her gift is added to those of other donors the impact is enormous!

“I was completely taken with the Parent Child Home Program and what they do,” says Rudley. “I am so happy to be a part of it, even a small part,” she added.

This impact is not lost on those who benefit. Alii, whose last name has been omitted to protect her privacy, was battling postpartum depression and was overwhelmed by the thought of parenting a baby and a toddler. She felt alone and isolated, yet the thought of leaving her home was daunting. When Alii learned there is a program that sends a mentor to your home to provide the help she needed, she was elated.

Over time, and with the support of her mentor, Alii became more confident and connected with her community. She was able to seek additional support from the Pediatric Development Center, which is also supported by Berkshire United Way, engage with other parents and enroll her daughter in pre-school. In short, Alii and her young family are now thriving. “The Parent-Child Home Program helped me grow and flourish as a parent and as a result I am now a teacher to my child. Now I know that I have that ability, and that it’s important for me to make time for that,” she says.

Please click here to read the full story on the Berkshire United Way Blog.