Bridges Community Training Sessions

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Bridges Community Training Sessions

Poverty is a common denominator for many sectors in society.  Its impact is felt by a wide range of entities, including schools, healthcare providers, social services, food services, faith communities, police and other first responders, courts, correctional facilities, workforce development, employers and government.

The Bridges model operates on the law of attraction: If you like this approach, then take ownership of the ideas and apply them where you live and work.  Your innovations can impact the lives of people in poverty, improve the outcomes of your organization, and help build a broad community initiative. 

Poverty is a complex problem that demands a comprehensive approach. And therein lies the challenge. Poverty is not resolved with a single program or even set of programs, because there so many variables. Bridges is not a program. It is a set of constructs that can be applied in many settings and in many ways. 

The Training Sessions can be tailored to specific timeframes ranging from 1 hour to 6 hours.  The sessions contain case studies, simple exercises, testimonials and real solutions.  It will help you and your organization discover why “middle class” solutions to poverty do not produce the results we are looking for and what works!  This free training session will change the way you view poverty forever and provide you with tools and strategies to implement within your organization. 

Sessions Include:

Understanding the Complexities of Poverty (1-2 hours)
This session provides an overview of the Bridges Model as it relates to the Individual.  The following concepts are reviewed: Social Cognitive Theory, Mental Models of Economic Class, the Causes of Poverty, Hidden Rule Among Economic Classes, the Eleven Resources, Registers of Language, Household Dynamics, and Creating Relationships & Tools.  Audiences: This session is suitable for all community sectors and levels of engagement from board, staff and volunteers.

Implementing the Bridges Model Within Your Organization (1-2 hours)
This session walks an organization through the Bridges Model as it relates to an organization.  This could be an agency, nonprofit, church, or business.  Concepts that are reviewed include: Client Life Cycle, Organizational Impact on the Client (Changing Behavior vs. Changing Rapport), the Theory of Change, Stages of Change and Motivation, Institutional Resources, Poverty Research Continuum/Policy & Procedure.  Audiences: This session is specific to agencies, nonprofits, and churches who offer direct counseling and services to individuals in poverty.

Implementing Bridges as a Community Collaborative (30 Minutes)
This session discusses the Bridges Model as a community wide comprehensive approach to reducing poverty.  An overview of the following is provided: Getting Ahead curriculum series, Staying Ahead Network, Bridges Steering Committee and Community of Practice, and Influencing Policies to Remove Barriers at the local, state and national level.  Audiences: This session is suitable for all community sectors and levels of engagement from board, staff and volunteers.

Workplace Stability Workshop Understanding the Complexities of Your Economically Diverse Workforce (1 hour) 
There is no question that increased worker stability boosts productivity, retention, and morale, which leads to greater profitability—but it may yet be a challenge you need to address. Why would an employer want to increase the personal and professional stability of workers? And how exactly can businesses go about it? Many of your low-wage, entry level employees live in daily instability which can lead to absenteeism, health problems, and violations of workplace expectations, all of which decreases morale, attention to work, and job performance. 
In this one-hour workshop you’ll learn to:

 - Recognize the range of factors that create instability for employees
 - See how instability, employee performance and profitability are related
 - Understand how economic class makes employees who they are
 - Identify techniques and tactics for increasing workplace stability
 - How the Getting Ahead in the Workplace curriculum helps employees in daily instability

 About the Trainer: Mary Cacioppi, Executive Director at One Body Collaboratives has earned the Bridges Out of Poverty Trainer Certification.  Mary’s certification included in-depth work on the Bridges Out of Poverty and Applying Bridges Concepts strategies and constructs. Additional certifications that Mary has achieved include: Certified Facilitator of the Getting Ahead and Getting Ahead in the Workplace curriculums. 

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"The Board and Staff of Family Counseling Services learned so much by participating in the training sessions.  Understanding the Complexities of Poverty provided us with a new perspective and understanding how to implement the Bridges Out of Poverty strategies in our own work has caused us to think differently about the way we interact with our clients in poverty."    Dawn Reints, Board President

Book Your Training: Book your Bridges Community Training Session today, by contacting Mary Cacioppi by email at, or by phone at 815-985-1311.

A printer-friendly copy of this document can be found here.

Handouts for Understanding the Complexities of Poverty can be found here.