The Wurzweiler Community Partnership Committee (WCPC) held its second successful community meeting breakfast this past February 29th at Yeshiva University. Dr. Carmen Ortiz Hendricks, Dean of Wurzweiler School of Social Work and Dr. Dolly Sacristan, Co-Chair of the Committee, welcomed representatives of community-based social services and mental health organizations from the Washington Heights and Inwood areas as well as federal representatives including: Dr. Jaime Torres, Regional Director, Region II, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Joyce Thomas, Regional Administrator U.S. Department of HHS, Administration for Children & Families Region II, and Dennis Romero of SAMHSA.
Some of the most important themes discussed at the meeting included a general concern over funding cuts to social service programs, the need of bilingual (Spanish/English) and culturally competent providers of social services and mental health services, and the need for technical assistance to access federal grants. Also noted in the discussion were concerns for attention to additional services for the elderly and youth and drug abuse and violence prevention programs, literacy programs, high school dropout prevention programs, and initiatives to ameliorate poverty among others.
The WCPC is proud to have been instrumental in helping community leaders in the social service field come together around issues that are so important to the general wellbeing of the Washington Heights and Inwood communities.