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Family Strengthening Program

Program Description

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The Family Strengthening Program is a farm-based residential program providing transitional housing and life skills training for families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness due to domestic violence and economic issues. With a focus on the whole family, the program provides opportunities for daily learning and application of healthy life skills and effective parenting strategies in a safe home environment, and strengthens families to remain intact and healthy.

Working in collaboration with partner agencies including Women Helping Women and other homeless services provider agencies, The Maui Farm’s services strengthen the continuum of care for struggling families. We provide a housing and family strengthening component after emergency shelter services have been maximized, and before families move on to long-term affordable housing in the community. Working together, the services we offer create a circle of support that nurtures and guides struggling families through their process of healing, strengthening, and transition to community-based housing and self-sufficiency. Together, we provide comprehensive support for families and children, helping them achieve and maintain positive outcomes.

The average duration of program participation is six to eighteen months. Shared housing is provided on-site at The Maui Farm, with monthly rental fees determined in compliance with federal HOME Program regulations.

While living at The Maui Farm, families are provided support in developing and implementing their personal plan for self-sufficiency. The Maui Farm offers the opportunity to achieve outcomes related to improving parenting, developing healthy life skills, furthering education, obtaining gainful employment, and transition to housing in the community, while ensuring appropriate care and education for their children. 

Services

Our Family Strengthening Program empowers families to develop the knowledge, attitudes and skills needed for healthy family functioning and self-sufficient living. Families participate in weekly classes and hands-on activities in the home and on the farm, while learning healthy values, effective parenting strategies, and an array of life skills that promote self-sufficiency. While living at The Maui Farm, families learn to support each other and build a sense of community with their neighbors. Families also learn to behave as good stewards of the ‘āina and to grow food for the family, as they engage in gardening and animal husbandry activities on the farm.

Services include:

  • Life skills training in healthy ‘ohana living, household management, and being a responsible tenant
  • “Akamai Parenting” training
  • “Malama ‘O Pono‘ī” self-empowerment classes
  • Farm-based experiential activities program
  • Career exploration
  • Support in advancing education
  • Support in securing employment
  • Coordinated service planning
  • Advocacy
  • Farm-based keiki program

Eligibility Criteria

The Family Strengthening Program serves families residing in Maui County who meet the following eligibility criteria:

  1. The family is homeless or at-risk of homelessness.
  2. The family meets income guidelines for the federal HOME Program.
  3. The family agrees to participate in all program services.
  4. The family is able and willing to live in a drug- and alcohol-free neighborhood, and poses no threat to the safety and well being of other individuals and families who reside at The Maui Farm.
  5. The family legally owns a safe and reliable vehicle and can provide its own transportation.
  6. The program’s outcomes, services and activities are appropriate in providing for the family’s needs as they prepare for transition to community-based housing.
  7. The family has reviewed and agrees to follow the FSP Policies and Procedures and the Rental Agreement.
  8. The program has available space for the family in one of its homes.

How to Apply

Referrals are accepted primarily through Women Helping Women. Referrals from other community-based organizations may also be considered, subject to available space and at the discretion of The Maui Farm’s Residential Programs Manager.

The referring agency is responsible for contacting The Maui Farm Program Assistant to initiate the referral, and for supporting the family in completing the program application