Did You Know?
Independence: A Family of Services, Inc. (IFS) has served youth and families for over 43 years in the Newark, New Jersey metropolitan area, and has expanded its services to include all of urban Northern New Jersey. Our ultimate goal is to help our clients break the often generational cycle of dependency on government assistance, attain self-sufficiency, and live healthy productive lives in society.
- Independence: A Family of Services began as a high school for dropouts. Our support is unconditional and respectful and we treat children and families with the same love and respect that we would want of our own children and families.
- At our Education & Program Center in Irvington, we offer a “one-stop shop” approach to care. Whatever a child and/or family needs, we make sure that they receive it including counseling, medical care, education, and/or tutoring. In addition, the center is on-call 24 hours a day to handle any crisis to arises.
- We have our own IFS foster homes, for infants and youth up to 18 years of age.
- We offer in-school support at Independence High School and other nearby public schools so that we can work with teachers and other adults in a child’s life, to make sure all problems are being properly addressed.
- We work closely with young people who are going to be on their own and without families as they age out of DYFS support services.
- At the East Orange Family Success Center, we are open to ALL families in East Orange to use as a resource at all times, not only when family is in crisis.
- We offer a “one-stop shop” approach. We are here to provide whatever a family needs to reach a successful conclusion at EOFSC, from finding health insurance for their children to reconnecting their household utilities.
Our Specialty: Culturally Relevant Programming
IFS uses Rites of Passage programming methodologies in an academic and cultural framework for the purpose of connecting African-American and Multicultural students of the African Diaspora, with the history, literature, traditions, and folklore of ancient Africa. The ultimate goal of the program is to honor the traditions of cultures that recognize the transition from childhood to adulthood and to assist our youth in making their transition meaningful so that they better understand the challenges of living as a responsible adult.
As a part of our total service platform:
- IFS operates an alternative educational component at Independence High School in collaboration with Youth Consultation Service.
- Our Life Skills program provides services to youth in over 11 school districts which include Newark Public Schools in four counties and colleges throughout New Jersey.
- IFS works in partnership with post high school programs as support for our graduating students.
- We collaborate with Lincoln Technical Institute and Essex County College to provide supportive services to IFS clients.
- Our partnership with Garden State Equality assists us in implementing LGBTQ counseling and training services.