For the past 40 years, Better Family Life (BFL) has served St. Louis and its inner-city neighborhoods by uniting families and empowering communities with:
- Youth, Family, and Clinical Services.
- Community Engagement and Development.
- Workforce Development.
- Cultural Arts.
A community development corporation, the nonprofit strives to build strong families and vibrant communities by breaking the cycle of poverty, providing hope, comprehensive services, and meaningful opportunities.
Ultimately, BFL wishes to realize a just and prosperous future for all.
About Better Family Life
Established in 1983, BFL developed as a response to society’s historical treatment and conditions of African Americans, using Nguzo Saba as the foundation for its fundamental values.
Today, BFL serves over 50,000 low-income youths and adults yearly, stabilizing inner-city neighborhoods with resources for the underemployed, unemployed, and skill deficient.
Better Family Life’s Service Departments
Youth, Family, & Clinical Services
The Youth and Family Department served over 9,000 children in 2022, providing services for:
- Educational and Creative Development,
- Job Preparation,
- CACFP Benefits (Child and Adult Care Food Program),
- Mental and Physical Health Support, and
The available programs include:
- Summer SAFE Passage
- Normandy Viking Quest/21st Century After-School Enrichment Program
- Kuumba Youth Performance (KYPE/Drum Warriors)
- America Scores (soccer)
- Individual, Group, and Family Counseling
Community & Development Engagement
BFL enacts community engagement to facilitate a community’s strength. Community and Development Engagement resources include:
- Drug and Alcohol Assessment and Treatment Referrals
- NARCAN Training
- Ground Zero
- Senior Wellness
Housing & Asset Development
Parallel to Community and Development Engagement, BFL’s Housing and Asset Development Department works with community leaders and stakeholders to achieve the nonprofit’s goals leading to community stabilization:
- Increase and preserve the affordable housing supply.
- Boost equitable investment in infrastructure and services in the urban core.
Regarding affordable housing and homeownership, the Housing and Asset team works with families and individuals to increase awareness of and access to related services and benefits.
Resources available to community members include:
- First-Time Homebuyer Education Course
- Foreclosure Intervention Education and Counseling
- Household Financial Management
- Credit Building and Counseling
- “Step Up to Home Ownership” Program
- An intensive, accelerated track providing hands-on assistance throughout the homebuying process.
The Workforce Development Department promotes economic growth and stability for community members by providing and connecting individuals to vital programs, such as:
- MWA Program (Missouri Work Assistance) – participation is mandatory for TA recipients (temporary assistance).
- SkillUP – a free employment preparation and support program available to SNAP
- “Able-Bodied Adults without Dependents” may complete mandatory SNAP hours through SkillUP.
Other BFL resources include:
- Entrepreneurship Program
- BFL Business Start-Up Training
- Micro Lending Programs
- Professional Certification Programs/Access
- Job Fairs
- Neighborhood Healing Network
Culture and art are luxuries for most BFL clients,” says the Executive Director of Better Family Life Cultural, Educational, and Business Center, DeBorah D. Ahmed. “BFL’s Cultural, Educational, and Business Center offers programs and activities to feed our souls.”
Illuminating the cultural and artistic traditions of people in Afrika as well as the Caribbean and Americas, BFL cultural arts programs include:
- Kwanzaa Holiday Expo,
- Melenated Marketplace,
- Black Dance USA,
- Black Cinema,
- Youth Arts Education, and
Partnering with WIN Warehouse
Since becoming a WIN Member in 2016, BFL has and continues to place orders for:
- Indoor and Outdoor Tools,
- Cleaning Products,
- Art Supplies, and
The Better Family Life Job and Training Coordinator for the Youth, Family, and Clinical Department, Simona Charles, lights up the warehouse when she stops by our showroom a few times each month to restock the supplies for the BFL programs.
Simona and her fellow dedicated BFL staff members are making St. Louis’s inner-city neighborhoods strong and vibrant areas for community members, paving the way for a brighter and prosperous future, and we are honored to help.
For more information about Better Family Life services or donations, please visit https://www.betterfamilylife.org/contact-us-information.
WIN Warehouse is a 501(c)(3) public charity where we work to provide value and mutual sustainability by connecting nonprofit organizations with corporate excess inventory.
Our commitment is to help nonprofit organizations receive the essential supplies to further their revitalizing impact on their communities.
To learn more about becoming a Nonprofit Member, please visit https://winwarehouse.org/nonprofit-members/.
Once your organization is an official member, you’ll have access to our Online Catalog and free reign to visit our showroom Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Please reach out with any questions. We’re here to help!