According to the 2010 Census Data, more than 40% of the residents in the East St. Louis area are living at or below the poverty level. Studies indicate that poverty is one of the major factors that contribute to a broad base of social problems including child abuse/neglect, drug/alcohol abuse, and an increase in the truancy and school dropout rates.
In addition, research has demonstrated that children succeed more in strong families and families succeed more in strong, organized neighborhoods.
Today, there is a need to assist both youth and parents in obtaining and maintaining needed employment and assist them in obtaining skills needed to obtain good jobs.
In addition, there is a need to provide a broad range of quality community-based services, which will support children in the early development stages of life, as well as through adolescence.
Community needs assessments also show a need to provide family support services to enable parents to provide the needed nurturing and care for their children, while supporting residents in their efforts to rebuild their neighborhoods.
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