|In 1965, President Lyndon
Johnson began waging war on poverty. That same year,
Southwestern Community Services was created and
joined in that fight. We have fought hard over the
years and have won many battles through our efforts
as advocates for those in need.
long before we were distributing surplus foods,
administering Head Start, and operating Neighborhood
Youth Corps, homemakers’ programs, and VISTA
Outreach programs. We became home to Legal
Assistance, food co-ops, food stamps, work incentive
programs, and others. The development of various
energy programs came later: Heat Emergency Loans and
Fuel Assistance programs kept folks warm; the
Weatherization program kept them safe and dry. WIC
helped their children stay healthy. New Hope New
Horizons provided supported employment and day
services for developmentally disabled individuals.
Housing programs also played a large role in
our history. Folks were able to stay in their own
homes with the help of Housing Rehabilitation
program and Lead Paint Abatement, and we helped
others to buy homes through First-Time Homebuyers’
programs and HOPE 3. Families could find and afford
housing with the aid of a Housing Security Guarantee
program. Additionally, affordable housing units
became available, accommodating seniors as well as
families. Folks without homes were able to find
shelter at five different sites located throughout
Cheshire and Sullivan counties.
recent endeavor is the addition of the Workplace
Success classrooms located in both Cheshire and
For a brief
moment, in 1999, we were television stars when the
Drewsville Mansion rehab project was featured on
Restore America with Bob Vila.
devastating floods of October 2005, SCS implemented
Operation Flood Recovery. The relief efforts offered
by this program helped individuals in 32 towns
throughout the Southern New Hampshire area.
Many changes have taken place over the years.
Through them all, we have striven to keep pace with
the constantly changing needs of our low-income
friends and neighbors. The fight is not yet over; we
will persist in our pursuit of waging war on
poverty. As we do so, we look forward to the many
challenges that await us.