Bridges out of Poverty

Bridges out of Poverty Program Logo

Bridges Out of Poverty St. Thomas Elgin is a group of committed community leaders and volunteers whose mission is to eliminate poverty by uniting the strengths and passions of those living in St. Thomas-Elgin.

Goals – To reduce the social costs of poverty, strengthen the workforce, and building a more prosperous and sustainable community.  Bridges Out of Poverty community support programs provide a family of concepts, workshops, and interventions to help individuals, community organizations, social service agencies, and employers address and reduce poverty in a comprehensive way. Bridges brings people from all sectors and economic classes together to identify and build resources, improve job retention rates, improve outcomes, and support those who are moving out of poverty.

The Bridges Out of Poverty community support program helps communities:

  • Move individuals from poverty to self-sufficiency
  • Reduce social costs related to crime, poor health, and welfare
  • Strengthen educational attainment and job skills
  • Enhance economic development
  • Improve on-the-job productivity
  • Revitalize neighborhoods
  • Build sustainable communities where everyone can live well

Explore our programs designed around St. Thomas-Elgin’s community specific needs

Bridges out of Poverty – Strategies for Professionals and Communities – 1 Day Workshop

This workshop is a comprehensive approach to understanding poverty. Bridges Out of Poverty uses the lens of economic class and provides concrete tools and strategies for a community to alleviate poverty.

Participants will review poverty research, examine a theory of change, and analyze poverty through the prism of the hidden rules of class, resources, family structure, and language.

Throughout the workshop, participants will receive specific strategies for improving outcomes, but the focus of the workshop is to provide a broad overview of concepts.

The Goal of this training is to assist employers, community organizations, social service agencies, and individuals gain insight and strategies.

Getting ahead Program Logo

Getting Ahead in a Just-Gettin’-By World is a 12 week program that helps individuals in poverty build their resources for a more prosperous life for themselves, their families, and their communities. Goal is to examine the impact that poverty has on people, families and their communities. It is structured for adults to reflect on and examine their lives, investigate new information that resonates with them, plan for their future, create ideas for building a prosperous community, and choose a team to help them on their path.

Keep Moving Forward Program Logo

Keep Moving Forward is a weekly program for Getting Ahead Graduates to:

  • Continue to work on goal setting
  • Get support and resources
  • Connect with others that understand

The goal is to keep the motivation, the goal and strategy development begun in Getting Ahead, moving forward. 

Circles Program Logo

Circles – Weekly meetings offering a community of support to build supportive, intentional relationships between people in generational poverty and volunteers and share a meal. 

Leaders are Getting Ahead Graduates who provide grassroot feedback about the multiple systemic barriers that keep people stuck in poverty, while building their own resources and moving towards the goal of sustainable employment. 

Allies are volunteer mentors who build intentional and genuine friendships with Leaders in order to help them build the resources and social capital that are so crucial for getting ahead.

Our Goal is to unite strengths in our community to create life changes for those living in poverty to move to permanent self-sufficiency and to advocate for changes in the system to remove barriers that keep poverty in place.

Make a Meal with a Meaning

St. Thomas—Elgin is looking for a team to put their good intentions into action and while doing it reap some benefits themselves!

People are often looking for a way to help but just don’t know where to put that desire and their energy. Your team of volunteers can come together for a fun evening where they will prepare and serve a meal for our Circles® Leaders and Allies, (a commitment of 3 hours).

This activity is fun and a way to build and strengthen your team! What is better than to come together for the common good and help others? Your employees will leave with a new awareness and knowledge that they can make a real difference, feeling good about their contribution and how they have helped build the lives of these individuals, their families and the community as a whole!

For more information please complete the form below.

Want to get started?

Use the form below to contact our Bridges Out of Poverty Co-ordinator.

Please note inquiries will be reviewed within 2-3 business days.

Recent News

Job posting: Manager of School Age Childcare (contract)

Job posting: Manager of School Age Childcare (contract)

Contract Position - Jan 2020 to June 2020 The YWCA St. Thomas-Elgin, established over 110 years ago, is a not for profit, social service agency governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.    Summary This leadership position is responsible for the management and...

Job posting: Manager of School Age Childcare (contract)

Job posting: Childcare staff (various positions available)

We are currently hiring for Program Supervisor, Program Assistant and Relief Staff to provide care for children during our Before & After School Childcare Programs. Hours are 7 am to 9/9:30 am and/or 3 pm to 6pm. Utilizing excellent behavior management techniques...

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