Dona Billey Weiler (left) and Adrienne Glover will co-facilitate Getting Ahead, part of Bridges Out of Poverty in Cass County.
Dona Billey Weiler (left) and Adrienne Glover will co-facilitate Getting Ahead, part of Bridges Out of Poverty in Cass County.

Archived Story

Cass County tackles poverty reduction

Published 8:38am Tuesday, March 30, 2010

CASSOPOLIS – Cass County Human Services Coordinating Council (HSCC) is working to reduce poverty.

On Friday, April 30, the HSCC is sponsoring a Day One Training, to be presented by former Cassopolis resident Bonnie Bazata, executive director of St. Joseph County, Ind., Bridges Out of Poverty.

Bridges Out of Poverty is a national initiative that uses community transformation to support people in moving out of poverty.

The first step is education. The HSCC invites and encourages anyone interested in poverty reduction to attend Day One Training.

Day One Training reaches out to community stakeholders, service providers and businesses whose daily work connects them with the lives of people in poverty.

The training includes case studies, detailed analysis, helpful charts and exercises and specific solutions, including:

• Redesign programs to better serve people in poverty.

• Build skill sets for management to help guide employees.

• Upgrade training for front-line staff such as receptionists, case workers and managers.
• Improve treatment outcomes in health care and behavioral health care.

• Increase the likelihood of moving from welfare to work.

Day One Training, Friday, April 30, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Cass County Council on Aging (mandatory for anyone wishing to become a Bridges facilitator).

Cost of the training is $25 for Cass HSCC member agencies, which includes lunch and books.

The cost is $40 for nonmembers who belong to NASW and $60 for all others.
Payment will be accepted at the event.

To register, e-mail Dona Billey-Weiler at or call 1-800-323-0390.
Please include your agency affiliation and phone number with area code.

The second step of the initiative is Getting Ahead.

Getting Ahead is a 15-week club for people motivated to move out of poverty.

The club will be co-facilitated by Adrienne Glover and Dona Billey Weiler.

For more information about Bridges, visit or

The HSCC is grateful for the support of Tri-County Head Start and Council on Aging, which are making Day One Training possible.

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