NVMS Community Spotlight: FACETS

FACETS is a nonprofit organization that has been committed to helping families in the Fairfax area for over 25 years. FACETS’ goal is to break the cycle of poverty by providing short-term emergency food and shelter, assisting families in finding sustainable housing, and teaching life skills to children and adults. This dedicated organization highly values their clients, staff, volunteers, partners, and donors. Their high value everyone involved is the reason FACETS operates with respect for the principles of confidentiality, informed consent, competency, honesty, safety and ethical use of resources. The goal of FACETS is a day when all individuals and families in Fairfax County have access to adequate and affordable housing.

There are numerous ongoing community programs at FACETS. Their Hot Meals Program provides, on average, about 88 meals per day to the homeless people living in and around four sites along Lee Highway in Fairfax. This program is supported by local church organizations and thousands of volunteers in the area. Not only are hot and nutritious meals provided, but this is also a great opportunity for volunteers to refer people to FACETS other helpful programs.

During the cold winter months FACETS implements their Hypothermia Prevention and Response Program. This program beginning in later November provides people with safe emergency shelter from the dangerously freezing winter nights. In 2012 FACETS served 244 guests in this program and approximately half of those guests participated in FACETS case management services.

The Housing Services Program tackles both short and long term housing for families in the community by providing transitional housing while simultaneously helping to find a permanent housing solution. FACETS believes in a “Housing First” approach, which is centered on first getting the family or individual into safe housing and then working with a case manager to address any housing stability barriers that could prevent them from obtaining a permanent residence.

Families in the area who are having difficulty meeting their basic needs can also be assisted by FACETS’ Client Resource Center, which is a part of their Preventing and Ending Homelessness Program. This program includes case management services, receiving food from their emergency pantry, and access to computers for employment or housing search.

In order to put an end to homelessness in the Fairfax area, FACETS is also involved in implanting an Education and Community Development Program which includes an afterschool program for youth that focuses on academics, building self-esteem, substance abuse prevention, healthy relationships, and college career planning. Included are also programs for adults that teach computer and financial literacy, career development and ESL. In the 2012 fiscal year, 452 people were involved in their 3 community centers located in Fairfax and Centerville.

There are a number of volunteer opportunities available at FACETS, including community program assistants, drivers, office assistants, mentors/tutors, collection drive organizers, youth volunteer opportunities, party hosts, etc. If interested in these opportunities or any of their community programs visit their website at www.facetscares.org.

NVMS highlights organizations or practitioners who make a positive impact on the community. If you’re interested in telling us about how you serve your community, please contact us as info@nvms.us.