Connie Phillips & The Importance of Social Services
Social services is a broad term for organizations, government or otherwise, that provide important services to members of the community. These services are typically aimed towards certain groups such as children, the elderly, of those experiencing homelessness, to name a few. They exist to improve and benefit the social standing of those around us in need of assistance whether big or small. Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest is an organization serving 4 Arizona counties to help children, older adults, refugees, and those in need of emergency assistance get the help, resources, and hope they desperately need. They operate everything from food pantries to refugee resettlement projects. We had the pleasure of getting to work with Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest on a program helping refugee women.
Bracelets & Charm Fobs Crafted by Refugees
Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest formed a women’s empowerment group that helps refugee women who haven’t worked outside the home before gather the skills necessary to help contribute financially to their homes. To learn these skills, the women through Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest, operate an Etsy store. The women learn how to make and sell products through the online store and local festivals where they also earn money to support themselves and their families. We worked with Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest to design two products the women could assemble themselves and sell as part of their social enterprise. They chose our Bangle Dangles and Charm Fobs each featuring a Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest logo charm that reminds the purchaser of the cause they have supported.
Kay recently spoke with Connie and they discussed how Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest is helping refugees and the community, the special project they worked on together and more!
Click the video below to view their interview or click here to listen
Connie’s Power Symbol: Hope
An overarching theme of Connie’s work is Hope. Hope is an incredible theme and an important aspect to inspiring and helping the community. There are many symbols for Hope including the Cross, butterfly wings, and even stars. We use the Wing to symbolize hope in our line of Power Symbol Charms because wings symbolize the possibilities that are in front of us if we just remain hopeful.
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About Connie Phillips and Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest
Connie Phillips is President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest. She has spent her career working in the field of social profit groups. Connie has a Masters Degree in Social Work and over the years has held leadership positions in the fields of developmental disabilities, mental health, child welfare, domestic violence and more. She is active in community initiatives and coalitions while also playing a role in advocacy at the local, state, and federal levels. Connie spent 19 years as Executive Director of Sojourner Center growing the organization to the largest domestic violence program in the United States. She has been President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest since 2015.
Since 1970, Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest has responded to Arizona’s changing needs by compassionately offering quality services and resources that contribute to a stronger and healthier Arizona for all people. Today, a staff of over 500 work in 4 Arizona counties and serve over 5,000 Arizonans each month. The annual budget of $15 million is funded from public, private and charitable sources. Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest partners with other nonprofit organizations and government agencies to ensure that our cumulative efforts are maximized. Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest is a pan-Lutheran organization, and is the social service arm of the wider Lutheran Church, including the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. While our roots are deeply Lutheran, services and employment opportunities are open to all, regardless of religious affiliation or background.
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