Author: Audrey Bell

Another Boots in the books!

Another Boots in the books!

We are so grateful to have been able to celebrate with those who invest in us, our mission, and the families we serve day in and day out. You truly are the fuel behind us.

A huge and well deserved shoutout to our staff and board members who help make our dreams become reality. We couldn’t do it without you!

Thank you to all those who attended our 2023 Boots for Babies! We are heading back to the drawing board to prepare to see you again this time next year for Boots for Babies 2024🥳🎉

See you next year!!💙

Brehon Spotlight – FSU College of Social Work

Brehon Family Services was recently highlighted by Florida State University’s College of Social Work. Check out how our amazing team is helping the women and children in the Tallahassee area.

https://csw.fsu.edu/article/providing-support-individual-and-community-level-brehon-family-services


Providing Support at the Individual and Community Level at Brehon Family Services

Brehon Family Services (Brehon), a nonprofit organization in the Big Bend area of Florida, has provided support services to woman and children since 1978. The organization has impacted thousands of lives in the region and supported more than 600 women and children at the Brehon House, a residential housing program for women experiencing homelessness.

Photo of Brehon Family Services Team

 “I love the difference our services make in the lives of the people we serve,” said Shirley O’Rear, executive director for Brehon Family Services.  “I have cherished seeing families change for at least two generations.” Shirley has changed and grown with the organization since she started as a bookkeeper in 2000, working in several case management, supervisory and executive roles until stepping into her role as executive director.

An FSU graduate in child development (BS 1984) with a minor in social welfare, Shirley oversees the main operations of the organization and has seen how important social work skills are at Brehon and in a broader context. “It is a degree that can be applied to everyday life, but especially working in human services,” she noted.

Shirley works closely with the Brehon team which includes two FSU College of Social Work graduates, Pamela Banks (MSW 1990, BSW 1989) and Halle Bush (MSW 2022, BSW 2021). “Each staff member brings their own personal gifts and uses them for the betterment of the families we serve,” Pamela emphasized.

From community outreach, donor engagement, grant and fiscal management, staff and board assistance, and even baby-holding Shirley works with her team to support clients and each other. As the deputy director, Halle Bush works closely alongside Shirley in managing staff and residents in a unique setting for human services.

“I love how niche our setting is,” expressed Halle, “We have an opportunity to really get to know our clients because they live with us at Brehon House. Being a smaller agency means we can cultivate lasting rapport with our residents and ensure they’re getting the utmost care.”

Brehon Family Services ….

Follow the link below to learn more.

https://csw.fsu.edu/article/providing-support-individual-and-community-level-brehon-family-services


Capital Medical Society Alliance donates $2,500 to community charities

The 2017 Capital Medical Society Alliance donated $2,500 for accessible healthcare and healthcare education to benefit the community. At a Fundraiser in September, Sponsored by SunTrust bank, the Capital Medical Society Alliance (CMSA) hosted its members and their spouses to an Austrian Wine Tasting at the home of Drs Matt & Stephanie Lee.

Monies raised at the fundraiser enabled CMSA to donated $1,000 to Brehon House, $1,000 to Florida State University College of Medicine and $500 to Capital Medical Society Foundation.

(left to right) Jackie Malone, Brehon, Executive Director;
(left to right) Jackie Malone, Brehon, Executive Director; Ida Thompson, CMSA President, Mara Rumana and Hien Guyer, CMSA Past Presidents (Photo: Special to the Chronicle)

The Capital Medical Society Alliance are physician spouses dedicated to the health, education, wellness and community service in the Big Bend area: Leon, Gadsen, Jefferson and Wakulla counties.

The CMSA is affiliated with the Capital Medical Society, CMS, the professional membership organization for physicians who live and work in the Big Bend area; Leon, Gadsen, Jefferson and Wakulla counties.

Tip$ for Tot$

Tip$ for Tot$

Come celebrate!

For years, Brehon Family Services has protected children and nurtured families in Leon, Gadsden, Madison, and Taylor counties.

This September, we’re celebrating our 39th birthday (but really…we don’t look a day older than 21)! Join us on Sept. 28 from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. at Madison Social (705 S. Woodward Ave. #101) where celebrity board members will serve up specialty cocktails.

Meet Our Celebrity Bartenders

During our party, you’ll meet our celebrity bartenders/esteemed board members:  

  • Max Schilling
  • Arden Fernandez
  • Stephen Austin
  • Dr. Cal Melton
  • Justin Peel

How to Donate & RSVP

We’ve got a friendly competition going on between our celebrity bartenders to see who can raise the most money. If you’d like to support your favorite bartender, comment with their name on Gofundme or when you RSVP for the event here.

See you there!

 

Fae’s Story

At Brehon Family Services we have many wonderful success stories to share. We aim to help at-risk families become healthier and more self-sufficient.

*Disclaimer: Names may have been changed for privacy reasons.

During Julie’s* stay at Brehon House, the staff and classes taught her how to care for herself and her baby. She was able to set goals and accomplish them, and learned strategies for disciplining her child with love. She also joined the Healthy Families program while at the Brehon House and her family support worker helped her manage her family’s needs and taught her how to better handle stress. Her family support worker also helped connect her with resources in the community.

Julie wrote, “If I didn’t have the guidance and support from Brehon House and Healthy Families, I don’t know where I would be today.”

Julie’s Story

At Brehon Family Services we have many wonderful success stories to share. We aim to help at-risk families become healthier and more self-sufficient.

*Disclaimer: Names may have been changed for privacy reasons.

During Julie’s* stay at Brehon House, the staff and classes taught her how to care for herself and her baby. She was able to set goals and accomplish them, and learned strategies for disciplining her child with love. She also joined the Healthy Families program while at the Brehon House and her family support worker helped her manage her family’s needs and taught her how to better handle stress. Her family support worker also helped connect her with resources in the community.

Julie wrote, “If I didn’t have the guidance and support from Brehon House and Healthy Families, I don’t know where I would be today.”

Kelly’s Story

At Brehon Family Services we have many wonderful success stories to share. We aim to help at-risk families become healthier and more self-sufficient.

*Disclaimer: Names may have been changed for privacy reasons.

At the age of 12, Kelly started using and abusing drugs. By 20, she was using both heroin and crack cocaine. For six years she couldn’t stop – she was in the grips of a disease she felt powerless to escape. When Kelly was 26, she overdosed eight times and was arrested seven times all in the span of one week. After leaving jail she was homeless and shortly after that, she became pregnant.

A friend told Kelly about Brehon House, where the staff helped her set goals and achieve them. She continued her drug counseling and made preparations for her upcoming birth. Thanks to donations from Brehon supporters, Kelly received what she needed for her newborn and herself. She took classes and met with her case manager weekly. Kelly finished her six months of drug counseling and graduated from the drug court program a week before her due date.

Tamara’s Story

At Brehon Family Services we have many wonderful success stories to share. We aim to help at-risk families become healthier and more self-sufficient.

*Disclaimer: Names may have been changed for privacy reasons.

Nine years ago, Tamara was homeless and unemployed. She didn’t have a doctor for her new baby and she was unsure about parenting. While at Brehon house, she learned to set goals for herself, her family and her baby. With the support she received at Brehon, she learned to prepare for both her own future and her baby’s future. Her son is now eight years old and thriving. She is working full time and is grateful for the safe and nurturing environment she was able to find at the Brehon House.

Darla’s Story

At Brehon Family Services we have many wonderful success stories to share. We aim to help at-risk families become healthier and more self-sufficient.

*Disclaimer: Names may have been changed for privacy reasons.

A 19-year-old mother of two, Darla* was facing a third unplanned pregnancy. Deeply depressed, she felt suicide was her only way out. Then she turned to Healthy Families Gadsden for services. In time, she developed a lasting, trusting and saving relationship with her family support worker. Darla received counseling for her depression and soon found hope for life.

Spirit renewed, Darla and her family support worker established goals to replenish the self-esteem and self-sufficiency that she had temporarily displaced. Darla enrolled in a GED program and obtained her driver’s license. She now has a vision and a plan for the future for herself and her children and is actively working towards those goals.

Jane’s Story

At Brehon Family Services we have many wonderful success stories to share. We aim to help at-risk families become healthier and more self-sufficient.

*Disclaimer: Names may have been changed for privacy reasons.

Jane* was a pregnant, homeless 18-year-old with no family or friends able to help her. Fatherless and a former foster child, she had become streetwise and untrusting. Then someone referred her to Brehon House. At Brehon House, Jane’s counselor became her best friend. Together they developed a list of goals that included completing Jane’s GED, childbirth education, positive parent/child interaction, life skills training and nutritional education.

Jane now has a healthy baby boy and lives in her own apartment. She is achieving her goals and living by her belief that teaching her child about honesty is the best approach, because the truth will set you free.