Welcome to the Nutley Family Service Bureau
As the ongoing global pandemic has affected the lives of millions across the country, many have struggled to maintain their physical and mental health. With the difficult year of 2020, Americans have been forced to face unemployment, the losses of loved-ones, public unrest, one of the most significant presidential elections, and so on. However, to make things easier for our fellow neighbors, the Nutley community has established the Nutley Family Service Bureau. The organization “is a non-profit community mental health and social service organization that provides comprehensive services to the Nutley community and surrounding communities.” In an interview with the Director of Clinical Services and Programming, Joe Armentano, he explained the goals of the organization, different services that are provided to the community and how it has helped Nutley families throughout the pandemic.
The Nutley Family Service Bureau was first established in 1913 by a group of women who responded to a family crisis regarding the endangerment of the welfare of a child. Mr. Armentano stated that “the organization has grown and evolved to address the needs of the community since that time.”
Thus, as the bureau has grown and evolved, it has offered multiple different services to those in need. Some of its services include a “food pantry and case management to connect those in need to concrete services such as housing, shelter, employment assistance, [and] connection to federal, state, and county programs for aid.” Mr. Armentano added, “In addition, we have built a thriving psychotherapy center that offers individual, couples, family and group therapy in a safe and confidential environment.” The Nutley Family Service Bureau specializes in family therapy, out-patient addiction support and counseling for those appropriate for an outpatient environment, LGBTQ support and children’s psychotherapy through play and art therapy. “Our mission is ‘to strengthen the emotional and social well-being of individuals and families through affordable mental health counseling and social service programs,’” said Mr. Armentano.
To join the Nutley Family Service Bureau, anyone can seek out the services of the organization and apply for different positions. Mr. Armentano explained that the only service offered to Nutley residents is the food pantry due to legal purposes. However, he stated that, “All other services are open to everyone. We are staffed with Master’s Level clinicians, Master’s Level Interns, staff and volunteers to support our programs and anyone can apply for these opportunities.”
Though, with the continuing spread of COVID-19, the organization has had to work in a safe environment and transfer their services to a virtual format. When asked about how the bureau has helped families throughout the pandemic, Mr. Armentano explained, “The organization has continued to provide all services either in a safe environment or remotely throughout the pandemic.” The Nutley Family Service Bureau also extended their support to the school community by distributing lunches for the lunch program during the summer, and providing remote counseling opportunities to students within the community. Therefore, the bureau has made tremendous efforts to help those in need during this difficult time.
To respond to the COVID-19 crisis, the Nutley Family Service Bureau staff has had to provide their services remotely and work in a safe, protected environment. With the new virtual format, Mr. Armentano stated that the “staff has had to learn how to be flexible with technology and with the ability to adapt to the needs of the environment and the changing of state and local guidelines to keep staff, volunteers, patrons and clients safe.” In spite of the challenges that have come with the pandemic, the organization has continued to offer its aid and help families within the community.
Since it was first established, the Nutley Family Service Bureau has grown, evolved, and given back to the community. The bureau offers a myriad of services ranging from mental health support, therapy, employment assistance, and so on. Lastly, with its great efforts to help those in need, thank you to the Nutley Family Service Bureau!