Manuel’s Story

Manuel is a man with a plan. He loves to cook and aspires to be a chef at a 5-star restaurant one day. Until then, he hones his skills at home preparing his children’s favorite meals each week. A hard-working, single father of three teenagers, ‘family first’ is his mantra and guiding force through good times and bad.

When a series of unfortunate events caused Manuel to lose his job, fall behind in rent, and eventually lose his apartment, he worried about his kids, he worried for himself; he needed to find a way to keep his family together.

Manuel and his children moved into SCO’s Flushing Family Residence in Brooklyn to help him get back on his feet. Manuel recalls, “They gave us a second chance at life. SCO provided me with a roof over my head, access to food pantries, and even provided us with fun and recreation that lifted our spirits.”

While at the shelter, the family received counseling, housing services, and family support services to ease the transition. Manuel laid out a clear path for his family. His goal was to “find us a home, build a foundation, and get the kids in school.” He wasted no time in setting that plan in action. Manuel found steady employment working at a men’s shelter, which he recalls “opened my eyes and pushed me to want to be better and do better for my family.” Staff helped Manuel find an apartment suitable for his large family and their cat Patrick, who had been living with a friend. And all three children settled into their new schools and new life.

“SCO is heaven sent,” exclaimed Manuel. “I am able to do more for my family now and live a productive life.”

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Crisis Respite

This program provides timely respite services for families in Queens coping with children who have a serious emotional disturbance. The child is temporarily placed with a respite family so their family can take advantage of some time needed to attend to other issues.

Who Can Benefit from this Program

Families/foster care providers in which a youth with SED needs a temporary separation from his/her current living situation.

Age Criteria

5-18 years of age

How to Access this Program or Service

Referrals accepted via foster care providers, private families, HCBS waiver providers and other mental health providers

Success Stories

The Storeys’ Extended Family

Family Care

“We do this for the love in our hearts for them. We’ve seen how much progress they’ve made with care and love." Learn More

Manuel’s Story

Homeless Services & Family Support

“SCO is heaven sent. I am able to do more for my family now and live a productive life.” - Manuel Learn More

340

young adults served by SCO are in college this academic year

We help

2,000

children get ready for kindergarten