New website to connect women, families to local resources
ST. JOSEPH, Mich. — A website that launched this week wants to connect women and families in one Michiana community to the resources they need.
Help4Her.org helps people quickly find programs that are available to them in Berrien County.
“It narrows that search for you to what’s here in our community,” said Berrien Community Foundation President Lisa Cripps-Downey.
The Berrien Community Foundation Women’s Giving Circle began working on the website a year ago.
After successfully beta-testing the website, the Foundation launched it on Tuesday.
Cripps-Downey said the Giving Circle recognized how difficult it can be for people to death through pages of Google results or rely on word-of-mouth to find local resources.
“We have an incredible amount of resources in Berrien County to help people, but you don’t know what you don’t know,” said Cripps-Downey. “If you don’t know how to get those resources, if you don’t know how to connect, this can be an easy place to find those resources rather than, ‘Oh I’m going to ask a friend and they happen to hear about something else,’ It’s a go to spot.”
The website is free and can be used by anyone searching for a wide variety of services in Berrien County like a mom in Buchanan seeking family fun or an organization in Watervliet helping domestic violence survivors find emergency housing.
“I think Help4Her.org is going to be an incredibly easy, local resource,” said Cripps-Downey. “Instead of having to sort through things that are maybe from all over, maybe I don’t qualify, this is in Berrien County. You’re going to know, here’s the website, here’s the phone number, you’re going to be able to see where everything is located.”
“It’s not just about crisis moments,” said Berrien Community Foundation Program Manager Susan Matheny. “It’s about noncrisis moments. Things are going well, ‘Hey, what can I do with my kids in the summertime?’”
Interested users simply go to Help4Her.org, enter their location, then search through the results which lists a phone number, website, and email for each organization.
“This database helps you isolate into your community which is in a lot of ways, a community is serving its own community for the actual problems that they may be facing, so by being able to narrow your focus into where you’re looking at, Ithink it will help women find what they’re looking or anyone find what they’re looking for,” said Matheny.
Help4Her is still collecting information on organizations that serve women and families in Berrien County. Interested agencies can click here to be listed on the website.
To access Help4Her.org, click here.