Join our President & CEO Siobhan Davenport tomorrow with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation for the Emergency Charla: How Latinos Can Be Better Allies to the Black Community on Tuesday, June 9th from 4:00pm to 5:15pm EST. Register for this important conversation HERE: https://hhf.page.link/fmab.
Combatting Racism & Inequity: A Call to Action for Teen Girls and Their Families from Siobhan Davenport, President & CEO of Crittenton Services of Greater Washington.
You may know me as the President and CEO of Crittenton Services of Greater Washington, an organization focused on the well-being, safety, equity and bright futures of our 600 mostly Black and Brown girls living in DC and Montgomery County, MD.
But I am also a Black woman and mother of a Black teenage daughter and son and the issues of racism, inequality, and police brutality against Black and Brown people that are now so publicly discussed are also deeply personal. I fear for my children’s safety as they perform mundane and daily activities – going for a run in our mixed race community, wearing a hoodie while running errands or bird watching in one of the beautiful parks – all innocent activities that, with just a phone call to the police, can become dangerous and life threatening.
And yet, even during this time of public pain and protest, I have hope.
I have hope seeing Crtittenton girls, their friends, neighbors and the world using their anger and fear to lift their voices and march in our streets to protest the the racist murder of an innocent Black man, George Floyd and the long line of Black men and women —Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, Michael Brown—who died at the hands of those who are sworn to protect and serve all Americans.
I have hope because I work with a team of dedicated professionals who create the trust and safe space for Crittenton girls to understand and empower themselves to overcome the daily inequities of racism, sexism and classism that they encounter in school, work, on public transportation and just about every other aspect of their daily lives.
I have hope in the network of support for Crittenton and the many peaceful protests calling for an end to structural racism. I know that Black and Brown people cannot change systems by ourselves and that we need the actions of White allies so that all Americans feel safe and have access to opportunity in our country.
A Call to Action
We are at an important moment in time. I am calling on the larger Crittenton community to come together in support of the voices of Black and Brown girls as we seek the systemic change essential to ensuring an equitable society. We all have a role to play and, having been asked by many in our community, have included concrete actions we can take to continue the change we all support.
Hear from Teen Girls
We invite you to join our virtual High Tea: Talk With A Teen Girl on Thursday, June 25th to have a much-needed open conversation with our teen girls. It is an opportunity to hear directly from and partner with our Black and Brown teen girls to move forward on advocating for equity, including very timely issues related to education, equity and mental health.
Get the Facts
In 2019, we released a report, Declare Equity for Girls: It’s Time!, that is a call to action for our District of Columbia teen girls and the adults that care about them and their future. The report illustrates with hard, verifiable data, the harsh inequitable realities that our teen girls face. Read and share this report with your network so you have a shared understanding of why the systems need to change.
Change happens when we take action and helping to educate and encourage our youth to identify a cause they feel passionate about and then translate that passion into votes for elected officials that support policies to address racism, sexism and classism.
When We All Vote is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization that is on a mission to increase participation in every election and close the race and age voting gap by changing the culture around voting, harnessing grassroots energy, and through strategic partnerships to reach every American. There are opportunities for adults and families to be Voting Squad Captains and separately, for high school teens to engage (and even hired) in their National Student Ambassador Program.
Staying Connected: Creating Change
The Crittenton community knows that the not-so-secret sauce to our success is that every team member cares about every teen girl we serve. Being a caring adult — centering and supporting others — is what we are each called to be not only for Crittenton girls, for the next generation and for the Black and Brown communities facing systemic racism, sexism and classism.
Grateful for your support and friendship as we commit and recommit to the change we collectively seek.
The panel will provide information and resources to listeners and trusted intermediaries working with families facing housing challenges, healthcare needs, and stress-related mental health needs and economic challenges during this time.
Dear Crittenton Families,
We hope you and your loved ones are staying safe and well in the midst of challenging times. I’m checking in with an update about how Crittenton Services can be of service to you and your families during these uncertain times.
Throughout all of this, our goal is to not only meet the current needs of our girls but also to continue to provide the support that help them achieve long-term wellbeing and self-sufficiency. We have compiled a resource guide of services that are available to you and your families to help during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
You can download the resource guide below for additional information on:
- Virtual Activities Resources
- Virtual Learning
- Internet Access
- Free Meals/ Groceries
- Mental Health Support
- Self-Care Tips
I welcome any questions, ideas and conversations. Please feel free to reach out via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 301-565-9333. I look forward to learning from you and discussing solutions as we dig deep to new find ways to support our girls during these challenging times.
|English | español | 中文 | français | tiếng Việt | 한국어| አማርኛ|
MCPS To Provide Extra Meals for Students on Wednesday, April 8.
This week, due to the upcoming spring break, MCPS will provide free breakfast, lunch and dinner meals for all Montgomery County children and MCPS students (regardless of age) today, April 7 and Wednesday, April 8. There will be no meal service Thursday, April 9, through Monday, April 13. On Wednesday, April 8, families will be provided with an additional meal bag for Thursday, April 9. The additional meal bag will include items for breakfast, lunch and dinner and will be available at all meal sites. The meals are not shelf-stable and will need to be refrigerated. MCPS meal service will resume on Tuesday, April 14. For a complete list of meal sites, please visit the MCPS Meals Service webpage. Women Who Care Ministries will provide weekend meals for families on Friday, April 10, from 11 a.m.- 6 p.m. at their Montgomery Village site located at 19642 Club House Road, Suite 620, in Montgomery VIllage. More information can be found here. Manna Food Center will distribute weekend food sacks on Saturday, April 11. The time and locations will be posted on the MCPS website on Friday, April 10.
Chromebook and Wireless Hotspot Distribution To Take Place April 8 MCPS is providing additional opportunities for students to obtain a Chromebook or a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot device for remote learning. For students who submitted a request to their school last week, devices will be available for pick up this Wednesday, April 8, from 1:30–4 p.m. These devices are available by reservation only. Students whose devices are ready for pick up will receive a message from MCPS letting them know where to pick up. Additional opportunities to obtain Chromebooks and mobile hotspots will be provided the week of April 13. If you did not have an opportunity to submit a request to your child’s school for the April 8 distribution, please contact your school to be added to the list for the next distribution.For families without internet access at home, Xfinity is providing free access to their Wi-Fi public wireless network. The Xfinity network should appear as an option when you attempt to connect devices to Wi-Fi at home. For a map of Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots, visitwww.xfinity.com/wifi. Once at a hotspot, select the xfinitywifi network name in the list of available hotspots and then launch a browser. These are typically available even from within someone’s home.
By Micha Green
AFRO D.C. Editor
With schools being out due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, organizations that support students, like Crittenton Services of Greater Washington (CSGW), have had to find creative ways to engage and encourage their youth, while staying true to its mission. Despite the unique issues presented with the unprecedented spread of the virus and new demand for “social distancing”, CSGW, a program that helps vulnerable girls in sixth through 12th grades, and its President and CEO Siobhan Davenport, are committed to helping their pupils and even providing further support outside of their normal work during this difficult time in the city, nation and world.
“We have moved our school based programs online and are meeting weekly with our teen girls, using various social media platforms [including] Party House and MeetMe apps, Skype, Zoom, etc.,” Davenport told the AFRO in an exclusive interview. “For some of our most vulnerable girls, we are providing a daily check in via individual phone calls or text.”
These larger group and personal check-ins, as a result of coronavirus, have become a digital subset of CSGW’s 132-year-old program and the larger National Crittenton organization, which comprises of 26 sister agencies, with a base in Portland, Oregon. There are 600 girls ages 12-19 in CSGW’s program, from Washington, D.C. (primarily Wards 5,7 and 8) and Montgomery County.
Under normal circumstances, Crittenton Services of Greater Washington “meets weekly over nine months in 43 groups of teen girls from the sixth through 12th grades,” Davenport said. “We offer a curriculum that is based on social and emotional practices, trauma informed, and incorporates positive youth development principles.”
Despite the new style of support and mentorship, CSGW’S mission and commitment continues.
The online and virtual programming, as well as regular check-ins through phone calls and text, have been integral for both the girls and the staff at CSGW. However, not all students have digital capabilities.
“According to Pew Research, 29 percent of adults with household income below $30,000 don’t own a smartphone, 44 percent don’t have broadband service, and 46 percent lack a traditional computer. Our educators and leaders must think about accessibility and equity in this environment,” Davenport said.
Crittenton Services of Greater Washington is stepping in where digital access is limited.
“We are providing chromebooks for any of our girls who are participating in distance learning or need to complete schoolwork at home. For girls in need of Internet access, we are providing free or reduced priced Internet resources to them and their families, such as Comcast Internet Essentials. The abruptness of the move to distance-learning has really exposed the digital divide that exists in this country,” Davenport said.
As the young ladies often turn to CSGW for help and solutions, remaining a reliable source of information has also been key to their digital transition.
“There is a lot of misinformation on the Internet right now so it’s more important than ever for us to communicate timely and reliable information,” Davenport said. “We have created a list on our website of valuable resources, such as up-to-date COVID-19 information and food distribution sites for our teen girls and their families. Additionally, we have adopted a multi-channel outreach plan (email, phone, text, social, group chat, etc.) to ensure our girls and their guardians have multiple touch points.”
As many of the girls in the program already face challenges, the coronavirus pandemic has become yet another trial for the young women to face.
“COVID-19 has exacerbated many of the challenges our girls faced under normal circumstances. So we are emphasizing routines and self-care and resources for stress management, (including five core competencies: Self Awareness, Self Management, Responsible Decision Making, Relationship Skills, and Social Awareness),” Davenport explained. “This helps the girls maintain a routine and give some semblance of order.”
With some of the financial hardhships, CSGW is stepping in.
“Schools are closed, which means access to nutritious food is limited. We have been able to provide non-perishable food items, water, diapers, formula, wipes and gas cards to 21 families, impacting 100 adults and children,” she said.
“In the last few days, we have been made aware that some parents and guardians, in addition to our teen girls have either lost their jobs or had their hours severely reduced. Our teens work to help support their households so this loss of income is devastating,” Davenport added.
The organization received a $5,000 donation from V&S Foundation, which they used to create a COVID-19 Emergency Fund to support some of the girls. “We are looking to match funds and raise $10,000 total,” Davenport said.
To support CSGW’s COVID-19 Emergency Fund efforts visit: https://crittentonservices.org/?page_id=2279.
Status Update-Monday, March 23, 2020
Office of Eligibility & Support Services (OESS), the Office of Home Energy Programs (OHEP) and the Rental Assistance Program (RAP)
Message to Customers (Información en Español)
In order to protect the health of Montgomery County residents, and comply with orders from the State of Maryland, the following service modifications will be introduced beginning Monday, March 23, 2020.
The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) will transition primarily to providing services and conducting eligibility screenings through phone, fax, online applications and email. Walk-in services will only be provided in the case of emergency and/or for families with children seeking emergency shelter. Any other individuals that come directly to any of the offices will be redirected and given the opportunity to schedule a phone interview. On-site services will be limited to housing/shelter emergencies only.
To request an appointment, please call 240-777-1003. Phone lines are open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Office of Eligibility and Support Services (OESS)
Please apply online at the following links:
Cash Assistance Programs/SNAP
Medical Assistance and Health Insurance
Long-Term Care Medical Assistance
You may also fax your application to:
- Germantown 240-777-3477
- Rockville 240-777-4100
- Silver Spring 240-777-3070
Or email to OESS.MoCO@montgomerycountymd.gov
Working Parents Assistance Program:
If you have other eligibility questions, please call 240-777-1003 for additional instructions.
Housing Stabilization Services:
Services for emergency housing needs, including homelessness prevention services and housing related financial assistance with eviction, foreclosure and utility disconnection. To request a phone interview, please call one of the following offices. Document drop-off stations are also available at each office location. You may also be eligible to apply for some services online.
- Germantown Office
12900 Middlebrook Road
- Rockville Office
1301 Piccard Drive
- Silver Spring Office
8818 Georgia Avenue
Office of Home Energy Programs (OHEP):
Provides utility grants and shut-off prevention to eligible households. Applications may be completed online. Paper applications, and a document drop box is also available at 1301 Piccard Drive, 4th floor. Document drop-off boxes are also located at each of the housing stabilization offices. Phone appointments may be requested by calling 240-777-4450.
Rental Assistance Program (RAP):
The Rental Assistance Program has extended all benefits scheduled for renewal between March-May 2020 to continue through July 2020. This will provide staff and applicants additional time to respond to document requests and to process applications. During this time, documents can be dropped off, or mail to Department of Health and Human Services, Rental Assistance Program, 1301 Piccard Drive, 4th floor, Rockville, MD 20850. Phone interviews may be requested by calling 240-777-4400 .
|MCPS is providing laptops to students with a need to ensure they can access instruction from home. |
Laptop distribution will begin Thursday, March 26. Devices are in limited supply and are reserved for students who do not have access to a computer or laptop at home.
To pick up a laptop, students (or the parent/guardian) will need to present their student ID (or provide the student ID number). Distribution locations are organized by school level. Complete instructions as well as distribution dates, times and locations are listed below and on the MCPS Coronavirus Information website. Students and parents can also call 240-740-7023 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. for information.
Important Note: For families without internet access at home, Comcast is offering free internet access through its Internet Essentials program. More information about this program is at https://internetessentials.com/. MCPS also has a limited number of mobile Wi-Fi hotspot devices that provide access to the internet. These devices will be distributed at a later date.
Click this link, Printable List of Distribution Dates and Times for a list of distribution sites.
Where Should Families Pick Up Laptops?
High School Students: Pick up at the school that the student attends.
Middle School Students: Pick up at an elementary school close to your home (use the School assignment locator if you do not know which elementary school is assigned to your community).
Elementary School Students: Pick up at the school that the student attends.
Students in Specific Programs: If the student is in a magnet or Choice program, a regional special education program (such as School Community Based or Learning For Independence), or in a program at any of the sites listed below, a laptop can be picked up from any elementary school close to your home.
If you are unsure of where to go, use the School assignment locator to find the elementary school in your neighborhood.
We strongly encourage that an adult accompany any student who wishes to pick up a laptop.
If you are unable to pick up a laptop during the distribution days, MCPS will provide information on additional opportunities for laptop pick up in the coming days.
Instructions for Parents/Students for Distribution Day
If you are in a car, please hold up the student ID or write the student ID number on a piece of paper big enough so that staff can read it through your car window or from six feet away. The staff person will record your student ID number and assign you a laptop.
If you walk up to the distribution site, please have the student ID or ID number ready. The staff person will record your student ID number and assign you a laptop.
Remember to follow social distancing guidelines when you come to pick up a laptop (keep six feet between people). Please follow directions from MCPS staff who will be helping to manage traffic.
Students provided laptops will be subject to the Notification of Laptop Responsibilities form (see linked document below).
MCPS Notification of Chromebook Responsibilities
Printable List of Distribution Dates and Times
MCPS is providing free breakfast, lunch and dinner meals for children 18 years old and younger, and all MCPS students (regardless of age) at more than 40 sites (including mobile locations) throughout the county. Additionally, MCPS school buses will distribute meals in several communities.
MCPS is collaborating with Manna Food to distribute weekend backpack food sacks throughout the county. Distribution will take place on Fridays (locations TBD). Please visit https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/coronavirus/#emergencymeals to see the most up-to-date list of meal sites.
Meal Distribution Service for Students