Phone 704-372-4663

Author: Kamaria Clifton

You are given the opportunity to make a difference every day. Whether you are cooking the food, teaching a class, transporting the babies to childcare, or collecting donations, everything and everyone works together to help our clients be successful.

Last night one of our amazing relief staff went above and beyond and assisted our residents with a super fun craft. She bought and brought all of the supplies for the clients to paint and design picture frames for their baby’s photo’s. What a wonderful way for our mom’s-to-be to get excited about the new life about to enter the world. 

Because of your Love,
Because of your Caring,
Because of your Support,
your Heart,
and Time spent Sharing,
We Succeed,
we Shine,
we Strive.
We Overcome,
we Achieve,
we Thrive.
We Are, because of You!

Thank you, Crittenton Volunteers,
from the bottom of our hearts!

I know life isn’t easy
but who would have thought it would be this.
Sometimes it gets so overwhelming
I just feel like giving up.
But my pride won’t let me walk away,
and fear keeps me from getting ahead.
That’s when I compromise my options
to sit and do nothing instead.
That way there is no losing
because there is nothing for me to fight.
Yet those are the times I miss winning,
which I finally do get it right.

I know life isn’t easy
and sometimes
I’m glad its not.
Because victory is always sweeter
when the war is not easily fought.
Plus, who said that life was made up of pain
just to bring me down?
It’s when times get the hardest
That I refused to be pushed around.
And where would my strength be
if life had not prepared me for this day?
I’m stronger that I give myself credit for,
and despite the pain, I’ll be okay.

Poem written by former Florence Crittenton Resident.

With each passing moment,
each blinking eye,
every feeling of atonement,
every breath and every cry,
I realize that the Life I Live
is but a gift to me,
counting every mistake and every success
the young woman I have come to be.
Never let another Judge you,
or discourage the path you choose.
All things have time and reason,
as a sunset, or a rose.
I’ve Lived and Loved,
Loved and Lost,
Lost and Found again;
These times I fell and realized
I was my only friend
Yet I am strong, I am bold,
I am someone special,
all truths be told.
Tears may fall from weary eyes,
But the following morning brings perfection.
I am me, I am one of a kind,
I am the world, and the world is mine.

Poem written by a former FCS client. So beautiful!

If Fay Green were alive today she would want to tell you a story…she was a great story teller! Fay and her hubby Danny, were both actively involved with FCS for many years. For her devotion and dedication to FCS, Fay was awarded the Lucille P. Giles Award in 1999. She was co-chair of the FCS Auxiliary from 1989-1993. Together with her dear friend, Claire MacGregor, they established the FCS Auxiliary Scholarship Fund in the 1980s. A few weeks before she passed away, I was with her in Temple Beth-El’s library and as she turned the pages of her personal scrapbook, she recounted stories not only about her but about a culture that was changing because of her. I was deeply affected by the scope of her accomplishments as she volunteered in a myriad of ways throughout the Charlotte community. The photo, below, shows her standing tall in pink, smartly dressed, accessorized and coiffed, as this was her signature demeanor. The one you see here is of Fay enjoying an afternoon with the Auxiliary ladies, just one of many spanning 30 years! Fay was always snapping photos of others and relished giving them away. She loved decorating FCS for the holidays and took part in the annual plant sale. Whenever I see a hand knit cap with a pom pom on top, I think of Fay since she loved to knit them for the newborns to keep them toasty warm. Lovely submitted by Gene Ruth Poler.

This Mother’s Day season, as we reflect on the blessings of family and parenthood, we ask that you consider providing HOPE for young women and families.

Honor a special mom for Mother’s Day or a role model with a gift to Crittenton, supporting young women and moms who need your help.

Dear FCS Supporters,

With the health and safety of our residents and staff at top of mind we continue to operate, providing our services to clients who might otherwise be homeless or separated from their child.

We appreciate the community’s support and send our warmest thanks to those who have reached out to inquire how they can help during this time.  Our greatest needs at the moment are funds to meet increased costs associated with pandemic precautions, and essential items that we have an ongoing need for:

  • Diapers & baby wipes
  • Toiletries
  • New twin sheet and comforters
  • New pillows
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Lysol wipes
  • Items ordered from our Amazon Wish List

Your contribution of any amount right now will help us continue to provide our services in accordance with the guidelines set forth by the CDC, NCDHHS and OSHA.

To protect our residents and staff, FCS will temporarily restrict all visitors and volunteers effective Monday, March 16. We are working to implement virtual visits and communication for our clients.  In addition, we have issued a temporary halt on accepting all in-kind donations with the exception of the essential items listed above.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Florence Crittenton Services

1300 Blythe Blvd.

Charlotte, NC 28203

Please join us as we ring in the holiday season with an open house and our annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony.

 

9:00 am – 5:00 pm: Open House (Agency tours, Lunch & Learn, Holiday Treats)

11:00 am: An overview of services provided by the Mecklenburg Mobile Crisis Team (CriSyS) and the use of these services during the holiday months when many are experiencing depression, grief/loss, substance abuse issues, and a host of other stressors.

5:30 pm: Dinner

6:00 pm: Welcome by Diane Thompson, CEO

6:15 pm: Tree Lighting and Caroling

7:00 pm: Desserts and Special Visit from Santa Claus

 

RSVP BY NOVEMBER 30TH

To RSVP, contact Michelle Smith

704-372-4663 or msmith@fcsnc.org

Florence Crittenton Reflection

My time at Florence Crittenton Services has been so short but so rich. With zero experience working at a nonprofit like this, I was not sure what to expect. I knew my role at Caldwell Presbyterian Church was a “social justice” intern, but I had no idea how that would play out in my daily tasks at my work placement. I certainly didn’t anticipate helping write a grant, volunteering with clients at other service organizations, o r leading a staff training session. Over the last several weeks, however, I observed how the struggle for social equity, the services offered at FCS, and my own background are all entwined. One of the first significant learning experiences happened when Sarah asked me to research the school zones around the new FCS location (since moving locations means clients may be students from a different neighborhood). This search led me to the maps of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school district, and I was surprised by what I saw. The zones drawn in the district had shapes that didn’t make any sense. The zones had been gerrymandered and manipulated so much over the years that several of them snaked around corners or tapered off unexpectedly. This inspired me to learn more about racial and economic isolation in Mecklenburg county neighborhoods, and how individual school and neighborhood demographics are affected by this. I discussed the topic of racial and economic disparity in Charlotte when I led a staff straining at FCS on social justice near the end of the summer. I tried to make this experience interactive with the staff, while also pulling in new concepts that they were unfamiliar with. In this training I explained the difference between equality and equity through a hands-on scenario. The group also went over various “hidden rules” of class structures and how these rules affect the decisions each person makes. More than anything, I learned about healing at FCS. On one afternoon, I was paged to the cafeteria so that I could play an instrument in a therapeutic drum circle with visitors, staff, and clients. This required me to be vulnerable in front of strangers, which I did not love at first. As an introvert, I’m not one to frequent free-spirited percussion jams. I can say now that this experience was incredible! The beats of each instrument were soothing, in a peculiar way. All participants were in sync in their drumming – even if it got silly at times. I was so glad I got to join in; it was a creative avenue to release any emotions and restore connectedness within a group. One day, I sat on a clinical call in which a group of social workers and other staff sat around a table and went over a case study of one particular client. In discussing a plan for treating this client , I understood just how difficult and troubled this resident was. I could see how each person around the table was worn out with a full schedule. And yet, light broke through. These staff members were so exhausted from this client, but something happened that shifted the atmosphere of the room. When prompted by the expert on the other end of the call, each person at the table named something about this worrisome client that they genuinely liked or appreciated. In that moment I understood that despite every difficulty with the resident, these care providers recognized that she was strong and resilient and beautiful and loved. I felt it. I also felt that they had been called to this work by God. I am drawn to the work of chaplaincy/pastoral care in healthcare systems and trauma centers, so I tried to soak in as much of this as I could. Seeing trauma-responsive care in action has motivated me to learn more about that field of work; I was inspired. I look forward to finding a calling where I can bring as much to the table. In a place like Florence Crittenton, it is impossible to ignore these glaring inequities. It is also impossible to ignore the overwhelming acts of restorative justice (as opposed to acts of mere clarity) that take place there every day. It has been a privilege to observe how FCS partners with young women who have been mistreated and misunderstood, and empowers them to cultivate true agency in their lives.

Elea Forester Social Justice Intern July 2019