Paterson CRC Recognized for Outstanding Community Service
On November 9, 2017 Kintock’s Paterson Community Resource Center (CRC) received recognition from the New Jersey State Senate and Paterson Mayor’s Office for outstanding community service completed by our clients. The Paterson Task Force for Community Action honored Pierre Francis, Program Director of the Paterson CRC, at their 53rd Annual Gala held at the Brownstown, in Paterson and presented Mr. Francis with a Senate Citation and Certificate on behalf of the Sate of New Jersey and Mayor’s Office.
Since May of 2017, 18 CRC clients have conducted more than 250 hours of community service at three social service agencies, including St. Paul’s Community Development Corporation’s Food Pantry, Eva’s Village and the Paterson Task Force (PTF). Among the tasks completed were community clean up projects, picking up donations of food and household items to be distributed to low-income families, making pre-packaged bags of breakfast and lunch items for the children of the PTF’s summer breakfast and lunch program and stocking food pantries.
“Your support of the Paterson Task Force and the assistance that you and your clients have provided has been invaluable, from packing weekend food back packs, to assisting with anything that we ask. We are thankful to you for including the Paterson Task Force on your Community Advisory Committee, and look forward to assisting with making an impact for the good of the City of Paterson,” said Lana Stokes, Executive Director of PTF, in a letter to Mr. Francis.
As the Program Director of the Paterson CRC, Pierre says he is always looking for new opportunities to partner with local organizations to provide opportunities for clients to give back to their community, explaining that this helps increase chances for a successful return to the community. After meeting Ms. Stokes at a community event in the spring of 2017, he invited the Director of the PTF to host CRC clients in community service opportunities that would directly benefit members of the Paterson community.
“I am so pleased that we are able to provide these valuable opportunities for our clients,” said Pierre. “The CRC clients often express their sense of fulfillment at being able to ‘give back’ to the community that they had previously committed criminal activities within. From a therapeutic standpoint, the expression(s) of selfless acts are an indication that the pattern of criminal thinking processes are being challenged (a cognitive behavioral therapy strategy) and even defeated,” he explained.
In addition, “clients had the opportunity to practice the work-related concepts that they learned during their participation in the CRC’s Work Readiness trainings. They also were able to practice pro-social skills they learned at the CRC, while working collaboratively with other community volunteers and PTF staff members,” explained Pierre.
“PTF Director Roberta Farber often worked side by side with the CRC volunteers, providing supervision, guidance and encouragement to the CRC volunteers,” he added. “She also referred some of the CRC volunteers to employment prospects.”