African Immigrant Community Services
African Immigrant Community Services (AICS) was incorporated in 2007 to meet the resettlement needs of East African refugees in the Twin Cities area. Its mission is to provide culturally appropriate and integrated services that strengthen the capacity of the East African refugee communities to be increasingly self-sufficient. AICS currently has the following programs: Refugee Employment & Social Services, Building Healthy Communities, Supporting Somali Elders, and ESL Education. There is a strong emphasis on services to youth, ages 14 to 24, who lack academic and applied skills considered critical for the workplace. For the last 18 months they have been working on a joint initiative with the Minnesota Department of Health addressing COVID-19 through community outreach, education, testing, and vaccination support.
Avenues for Youth
For 25 years Avenues for Youth has supported youth ages 16 to 24 in Hennepin County. Whether a young person needs a place to stay for just one night or more than a year, Avenues empowers youth to find their path out of homelessness. Avenues provides a stable home, builds trusting relationships, and helps youth navigate their education, career, health, and housing goals. There is no one reason why youth experience homelessness. It is intersectional systems of oppression, racism, and poverty that are the root causes of homelessness. Without addressing these systems, homelessness persists. Youth are resilient, inspiring, and the drivers of their own journey. With stability, trust, and youth-centered supports their dreams can become reality. That is the goal of Avenues.
People Incorporated was founded in 1969 and Presbyterian congregations, including Westminster, were integral to its establishment. Now, People Incorporated is the Twin Cities’ largest community-based provider of mental health services. Its mission is to support mental health and wellness in our community through collaboration and integration of care. Westminster’s grant to People Incorporated supports Outreach Case Managers to reach people who are unsheltered and in desperate need of respectful and affordable housing. Outreach services are linked and collaborative to best address the complex challenges our unsheltered neighbors face. Staff seek out individuals experiencing homelessness living in encampments, parks, and other locations, and help by providing basic needs, completing housing assessments, and sharing resources for housing and health care both within and outside the People Incorporated system of care.
Tubman’s mission is “to advance opportunities for change so that every person can experience safety, hope, and healing.” For more than 40 years, Tubman has served as the Minnesota’s largest provider of domestic violence services, supplying more than 20 percent of all shelter beds for adults and children experiencing family violence. Annually Tubman supports approximately 25,000 community members that have experienced some form of trauma, including relationship violence, sexual assault, mental health issues, addiction, trafficking, and homelessness. Tubman offers emergency shelter, therapy and counseling, Orders for Protection and other legal help, and programs for affected youth. Tubman helps community members overcome barriers to move from fear to freedom.
To see a complete list of Westminster’s current community partner grant recipients, visit our Community Partners page. Each month we will feature a few of our grant recipients and the work they do for our community.