Meta House, a nationally recognized, gender-responsive residential treatment facility, supports women and their children through the process of recovery from substance abuse.
As one of the only treatment centers in Wisconsin that allows children to reside with their mothers as they undergo treatment, Meta House aims to support children, rebuild families, and end the cycle of intergenerational substance abuse. While mothers undergo treatment—including parenting courses and health education—children up to 10 years old learn interpersonal skills and receive interventional services if necessary in a facility next door. When not in class, women are responsible for preparing meals for their children, giving baths, and delegating chores, to ensure they are able to establish the basis of a healthy family routine.
According to its mission statement, Milwaukee Urban Gardens protects plots around the city from development and shares them with locals "to enhance the quality of life." And it's not just the savory oxygen generated by the plants that bolsters the quality of life; it's the opportunities these gardens provide for neighbors of diverse backgrounds to work side-by-side nurturing their favorite herbs, flowers, and vegetables—as well as the beauty they lend to the area. This nonprofit land trust looks after a total of 45 parcels of land located in Riverwest, Bay View, northern Harambee, and the Northwest side.
United Way of Greater Milwaukee mobilizes people and resources for community problem-solving endeavors, with focuses including education, income, and health. Since its start in 1909, it has invested more than $1 billion to help solve the community's most serious issues. The organization coordinates community members to take collaborative action through more than 160 programs, bolstered by partnerships with 80 other local agencies. They also report that 91% of students who participate in United Way-funded youth development programs feel they were on track to graduate high school on time.
With the help of hundreds of volunteers, The Gathering of Southeast WI, Inc. serves 10 free meals each week to those who might otherwise go hungry. In 2011, the breakfast program—the only service of its kind in the area—gave away more than 50,000 meals from three inner-city locations. The sites also serve dinner twice a week, as well as lunch on Saturday. All food is prepared fresh daily. All told, The Gathering provides meals to approximately 100,000 people experiencing homelessness or hunger each year.
The organization would like to purchase more books to ensure that all members have reading material for its programs and during the upcoming Read Across America events, where volunteers will read to young members to honor Dr. Seuss's birthday at various clubs from February 22 to March 2. After the events, the books will help keep the Clubs’ libraries stocked for afterschool use as well as literacy games and reading with BGCGM volunteers.