Ethel R. Lawrence Homes
The Social Services Department at Ethel R. Lawrence Homes (ERLH) currently provides an informal support system to residents of this Mount Laurel development. This support system includes referring select residents to appropriate county agencies, which provide opportunities for certain skills to be strengthened. These skills include parenting, job readiness, money management, and social skills. We also offer on-site workshops to improve parenting skills and to help families seeking a college education.
Fair Share Support Services (FSSS), the social services arm of FSHD which is headquartered at Northgate II, is at the forefront of a national movement to integrate housing with supportive wellness services in low-income settings as part of an effort to improve care while reducing healthcare costs. The goal of our program is to allow Northgate II seniors to age in place in their own homes, surrounded by their treasured belongings and supported by an internal network of neighbors and staff who know them well. Our wellness work helps to improve the health and functional ability of our elderly tenants in order to avoid, minimize or forestall the likelihood of institutional placement in a nursing home.
We have also built a comprehensive support network for our other residents (people with special needs and families with children) as they rise to overcome the many health challenges that are associated with the trauma of living in one of the poorest, most violent cities in the nation.
Our program features an Assisted Living program (through Caring, Inc.), healthy cooking classes, a congregate lunch program, exercise classes, weight loss support groups, chronic disease self-management workshops, supplemental food programs (through Twilight Harvest, a partnership with the Food Bank of South Jersey), and massage therapy, among other programs, which not only help our residents feel better about their lives but can also lead to significant medical savings due to fewer emergency hospitalizations and, in some cases, a decline in prescription drug needs and their related costs.