After school program connects families

on 17 June 2016

Children go to school to learn and sometimes their families get something out of it too. In this case, a family learned about how to get nutritional food on their table at home.

KIPP Philadelphia Elementary Academy offers the Families and Schools Together program. FAST is an after school program that is as much for the parents as it is for the children. The program builds family engagement in schools and helps children become better students.

Tara Stanley is KIPP Philadelphia’s Elementary Academy Social Worker. She’s also a former Turning Points staff member, so she knows about all of the resources available for families. At the school, Tara identified a student who would benefit from the FAST program. Mom declined when she heard about the family meal because her family was vegan. Another teacher persuaded the family to attend.

Tara said, "I quickly found out that this vegan sure did enjoy fried chicken.” 

Tara learned the mother struggled with providing food for her daughter. Meat was a luxury. Being vegan is easier to say than to admit that they couldn’t afford the non-vegan options.

Through FAST, the family found what they needed. They were introduced to FAWN (Food and Wellness Network), our emergency food pantry.  There they receive healthy food – including meat occasionally – and save money for groceries. 

At Turning Points, we are families looking out for each other. Although Tara is not a staff member any more, she will always be a Turning Point. And the people who use our services are families looking out for each other. FAST became a resource for this family – to become more connected to their school and to find nutritious food for the family.