2005 Program Highlights
Issue OrganizingD.A.W.G. organized in 2005 around several issues including the Federal Budget Cuts, Welfare Reauthorization, and Medicaid changes on the state level. D.A.W.G. joined with representatives from labor unions, business, and community providers to form Families and Children Educate the State (FACES) on Medicaid as a response to proposed changes in the state Medicaid program. D.A.W.G. joined with other groups on the national and state level to stop drastic cuts to programs for low income families in the federal budget as well as changes to the welfare system that were also included. As part of these efforts D.A.W.G. participated in press conferences, town hall meetings, prayer vigils and meetings with policy makers on the federal and state levels
EITC Outreach CampaignD.A.W.G. distributed information on the Earned income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit to 500 low-income families in West Virginia. We accomplished this by including information in our newsletter and making information available at our information sessions and our trainings.
Hurricane KatrinaIn 2005, DAWG raised nearly $3,000 to help the New Orleans Welfare Rights Organization rebuild after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina destroyed their offices and the homes of their members.
Teen DAWGTeen DAWG began working with the Regional Family Resource Network to plan a Teen Expo for spring 2006. They also spearheaded the organizing of the first teen track for the Family Leadership Conference to be held April 2006.
Alliance for Economic Security and IndependenceD.A.W.G. formed the Alliance for Economic Security and Independence (AESI) out of the groups who participated in the Stop the TANF Cuts Campaign. The Alliance is a group of organizations, individuals, and family members that are concerned with economic justice issues that affect West Virginia families. AESI was formed around the principles contained in the Bill of Economic Rights that President Roosevelt outlined in his 1944 address to Congress. Roosevelt stated that “We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence.“
Family Leadership ConferenceThe D.A.W.G. co- sponsored the Family Leadership Conference. The Conference brought over 200 families from all over the state together to learn about issues that affect them and their families. Costs of the conference were covered by the sponsors so that families had no out of pocket expenses. The Conference is unique in that it allows the entire family including children to come and participate in informative workshops and fun activities. Workshops included Teen Parenting, Accessing Benefits, and several disability related workshops. The workshops were presented by families who had first hand knowledge of the issues.
Making Connections TrainingD.A.W.G. held three Making Connections Trainings throughout the state. One in Wheeling, One in Charleston, and one in Milton. 56 individuals received training on accessing public assistance, housing, food stamps, health care, and self-advocacy.