Family Service Association of South Jersey celebrated the expansion of its Family Life Center program with a grand opening Wednesday, April 24, at FSA’s Egg Harbor Township main office.

FSA sought a larger space for its unique multi-service program that helps families affected by abuse or neglect. The program is funded by the New Jersey Department of Children & Families, Division of Child Protection & Permanency.

The new center, located at the site of FSA’s former Bargain Boutique thrift store at 3073 English Creek Ave. in Egg Harbor Township, helps meet the growing needs of Atlantic County residents and allows FSA to expand its parenting education and support for families referred by the Division of Child Protection & Permanency, as well as supervised parent-child visitation and activities.

"Our new Family Life Center is a major benefit to South Jersey families in need," said Cindy Herdman Ivins, president of FSA of South Jersey. "Families dealing with abuse or neglect issues can get the support and resources they need to become whole again."

Working in partnership with the Division of Child Protection & Permanency, attendees at the grand opening event included social workers who refer families to the FLC program. FSA staff provided tours around the multi-room facility, which includes areas for young children and families to play, eat meals together and build healthy relationships with each other under supervision.

Herdman Ivins thanked the Charity League for 20 years of generous support to the FSA of South Jersey. The Charity League annually contributes to the Family Life Center Program. In total, FSA has received more than $165,000 in support.

"The Charity League is filled with amazing and dedicated community-oriented women whose financial commitment to Family Service Association and other agencies is awe-inspiring," Herdman Ivins said. "Their commitment extends beyond financial help to stewardship with their active participation on the FSA board, and their wisdom and support have helped FSA grow to better meet the needs of the community."

The new Family Life Center replaces FSA’s former Bargain Boutique thrift store, which was a delight of the local community for seven years before closing in May 2017. The new Family Life Center opened in January.

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