WHO WE ARE
SWAG is a grassroots organization whose goal is to address the needs of the community by connecting individuals and families to services and resources through advocacy and from agency and community partners. It began in February of 2010 when a group of nine women came together to discuss their concerns for a cluster of neighborhoods in SW Gainesville, just outside of the city limits. The members of the group had been working in their own ways for years to raise awareness and bring services and support to the area, but it wasn’t until June of 2012 when the SWAG Family Resource Center opened its’ doors that their efforts truly made the impact they were all waiting for. Now a non-profit organization, SWAG has accomplished goals well beyond anyone’s dreams. The group has partnered with more than 40 organizations that culminated in the creation of a family resource center, a playground, and a health clinic will in the heart of the neighborhoods. An early learning center eventually be a reality, as well.
WHAT WE DO
SWAG is made up of area residents, advocates and service providers that strive to improve the health and well being of residents in the Tower Road area, just west of I-75. SWAG’s goals include protecting vulnerable children, supporting families, and providing opportunity and resources so adults can realize self reliance and success in life. The Family Resource Center provides a safe place for children and their families, and a gateway to services and opportunities for those seeking a to better themselves. The SW Health Clinic provides primary medical services and seeks to improve the health and well being of the SWAG residents.
SWAG’s vision is big. We have accomplished three parts of the vision:
The first part of our vision is the SWAG Family Resource Center. The center is being managed by Partnership for Strong Families who pays the ongoing costs and employs Kristy Goldwire, our SWAG Family Resource Center Manager, and our Family Support Facilitator. This project is fully sustainable and successful. The generosity of groups like the Rotary has allowed the Resource Center to acquire things like computers to allow the center to meet our Residents’ needs.
A second part of our vision is the playground, and it’s now installed with dozens of children playing on it daily.
The third part of our vision is the health clinic. The health clinic provides the community with much-needed access to health care. The facility is owned by the county and managed by the Alachua County Health Department. The Health Department staffs the clinic and pays ongoing costs (utilities, etc.). The Health Clinic would not have been possible without the generous donations of numerous private businesses and grants from the Florida Blues Foundation.
Finally, we have opened the CHILD Center for Early Learning to meet the needs of our neighborhoods’ youngest residents and their parents.
SWAG IN THE MEDIA
Click HERE to read a story about SWAG on NPR.