Success Stories

Numbers can only tell you so much about our organization’s impact, but these stories speak to the reality of the work we do. The staff members of the FRC started to document how they have impacted families in the Fond du Lac Community, these documents are called FRC Stories. The organization has been recording stories since May 2022. These stories are staff experiences that have either moved staff emotionally or speak to the success of this organization to deliver dynamic services to meet the needs of a family in crisis. The document started as an outlet for staff to share “feel good” stories with each other to remind ourselves of the impact we have. However, we came to realize that these stories are more than just “feel good” stories, they are success stories. These stories provide a glimpse into the nature of this organization and our commitment to helping families. Please note these are only a fraction of the stories we have and we only share stories that we feel comfortable with.

June 2023

A mother called FRC and asked if we had any lice kits. The mother explained that she had 7 children so the household total was 9 individuals. The mother was upset because her autistic child was going to miss therapy and she did not have anything to treat the ice. FRC was able to provide the family of 9 with a kit for each family member and also provided them with lice-repelling shampoo.

Kendall Brester, Visitation Supervisor


May 2023

A woman called FRC and stated that she was getting out of an abusive relationship. The staff helped the mother with hygiene products for her and her son. The staff also helped the mother with housing resources and with shelters that help women escape domestic abusive relationships.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

May 2023

A foster mother called and stated that she had two babies placed with her and did not have any baby items for them, including formula. The foster mother also stated that she was waiting on gift cards from social services, so she did not have any extra income to get the children the things that they needed. The foster mother stated that she did not have the special Nutramigen formula. The staff was able to provide the mother with diapers, wipes, formula, a stroller, and baby food.

Natia Higgs, Visitation Supervisor

May 2023

A teen mom came into FRC asking for diapers. The mother explained that this was her first child and she did not have anything for her child and she was due in July. Staff was able to provide the mother with diapers, wipes, a breast pump, a diaper genie, and a pack-and-play. Staff also provided the mother with information on SOAR for when her child is born.

Kendall Brester, Visitation Supervisor

April 2023

A Social Worker from Oshkosh brought in a father of 4 children in need of services. The father told staff that he recently got emergency custody of his 4 kids, aged 14, 11, 4, and 3. The father stated that he did not have anything for the children. Staff was able to provide the father with blankets, pull-ups, wipes, books, educational toys, and hygiene products. The staff was also able to tell the father about Headstart at Advocap, state assistance with childcare, and informed the father of different activities for his children in the Fond du Lac area.

Natia Higgs, Visitation Supervisor

March 2023

A father arrived at FRC for assistance with diapers, wipes, and formula. The father explained that he is a veteran and stated that he had recently gotten back on his feet. The father states, “Even with two jobs, I still need help I have five kids and my wife stays home to take care of them.” FRC helps meet those needs. Due to the increased income, the family no longer was receiving state assistance. The father received the items he needed and also took some food that was previously donated.

Sarah Mauthe, Parent Educator

March 2023

A grandmother called FRC and stated that her 19-year-old daughter was visiting from Georgia and had an emergency C-section. The grandma explained that the daughter went into labor unexpectedly and had nothing for the baby in the state since she was visiting. The mother could not receive WIC since she was not a Wisconsin resident, she only had one bottle and did not have any diapers or wipes. FRC was able to provide the mother with all the items she needed. The staff also referred the mother to St Vincent for clothing vouchers.

Kaniala Aragon, Interim Executive Director


March 2023

A mother and father came into FRC for diapers, wipes, and pads. The mother asked for pads since the baby was 3 weeks old and she was still healing. Staff saw the mother and father looking at a wrap in the lobby, but the parents explained that it was not the type of wrap that they wanted. The parents told staff that they had three children, and they were struggling with taking all three out in public. Staff went to the back and gave the mother and father the wrap they were looking for. The mother was unsure how to use the wrap, so the staff showed the mother how to use the wrap. The mother and father told the staff how much they appreciated the help and being shown how to use the wrap.  

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

February 2023

The Public Health Department of Fond du Lac County referred an individual from the juvenile courts to the Family Resource Center. The representative from the department stated that the family had 8 individuals in one household that had lice. The department sent a staff member to pick up the supplies and the distribution center was able to supply the family with +10 items to combat the lice including a kit for each family member.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

.

January 2023

A mother had recently gotten custody of her nephew and came into the FRC for diapers and wipes. The mother asked about a toddler mattress. Later that day, the FRC received a donation of a brand-new toddler mattress, which was given to the mother. The mother also signed up for SOAR classes. The mother shared that the child was having a hard time sleeping and transitioning since their mother died. Our parent educators were able to help the mother with grief counseling for the child.

Sarah Mauthe, Parent Educator

January 2023

A mother called FRC and asked if we had a pack-and-play. The mother stated that her family had recently moved and the child’s bed was in storage. The mother shared that the child only got 3 hours of sleep because she was used to sleeping in her crib. While holding the sleeping child, the mother signed up for the distribution center and stated that she had called Salvation Army and St. Vinny’s but both places stated it would take three days to get her one. The staff was able to provide the mother with a pack-and-play.

Jessica Schwolter, Office Manager

.

December 2022

The FRC opened a Christmas distribution as a safety net for the county of Fond du Lac. The distribution was designed to have flexible pick-up times that specifically cater to families’ schedules. Going out of our way to help families, I received approval to keep the FRC’s distribution center open during a blizzard. The FRC normally closes when the schools close, but we could recognize that people still needed assistance. I kept the distribution open from 11:00 am – 4:30 pm. That day I helped 22 families with distribution aid (diapers, food, hygiene, Christmas presents, etc.), while also manning the phones and directing individuals to resources. A homeless mother had also called and explained that she was currently staying at Motel 6 with her two young children. The mother was unable to make it to the FRC to pick up aid. I put together a care package with essential children’s aid, food, and Christmas toys. I drove through the blizzard and delivered them to the family at the Motel 6 across town.

Kaniala Aragon, Visitation Supervisor

.

December 2022

The FRC received a phone call from SSM Health St. Agnes Hospital regarding a mother who had an appointment and disclosed to their staff that she had missed the Toys for Tots deadline in November and didn’t have gifts ready for Christmas. The mother entered the FRC and immediately began to choke up when attempting to communicate what she needed. The mother struggled to communicate what she was there for and that’s when staff intervened to ask if she was here for a Christmas gift for her children. The mother had been to FRC prior, but not in months, and shared that she doesn’t utilize our services unless it’s an emergency because she understands there are people in worst situations. The FRC was able to supply the mother with Christmas gifts for her children. The mother became very emotional when thanking staff and explained how much this meant to her.

Kaniala Aragon, Visitation Supervisor

.

November 2022

The Fond du Lac school district called and stated that they had a Spanish-speaking mother that was due in January. The mother needed a car seat, clothing, bottles, and a baby bathtub. The distribution center was able to provide all the materials and more. The staff was also able to provide the mother with different resources.

Sarah Mauthe, Parent Educator

November 2022

A homeless family called FRC asking for a crib and toddler bed. When the family came, they requested clothing, toys, mattresses, hats, and other household needs. The family stated that they have been homeless for 6 months and just got accepted for an apartment. One of the children did not have shoes, so the staff provided the family with a Goodwill voucher.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager  

.

November 2022

Nurses from SSM Health St. Agnes Hospital referred a new family with their ten-day-old baby to the FRC. The family did not know she was pregnant and needed items for their newest child. Upon helping the new mother, she broke down crying and stated that our program was a blessing The mother then explained how hard it has been for the family since they are now a family of 8. The mother couldn’t express how grateful she was and then hugged me crying. The staff explained our different services and explained how our parent educators could help the mother further. The family joined SOAR and it was a special moment to see this family leave with everything they needed for their precious new addition to their family.

Kimberly Oreck, Executive Director

.

October 2022

A Mother working with our parent educator on trauma care had previously came to FRC for resources on AODA treatment. Staff provided the mother with different resources in the county. The mother stated that she needed to attend a treatment program to help get her children back. The staff referred the mother to SSM Health. The mother called back a few weeks later and thanked the staff by saying, “You helped save my life because I am now getting the treatment that I need.”

Lisa Wolter, Parent Educator   

October 2022

 A mother called that did not speak English. Our translator met with the mother and helped her sign up for Toys for Tots and the Coat Program. She just got in town from Honduras. The mother has three children, the middle child has autism, and the youngest is 2 months old. The mother had nothing for the child. I explained the SOAR program to the mother, which she was interested in. The mother received the necessary aid she needed to care for her children. The staff also provided her with a full community resource guide in Spanish.

Varie Ortegas, Visitation Supervisor

.

October 2022

A mother called the FRC asking for coats for her 4 children. The mother had been in the week prior and talked about how she was going to be evicted. Staff asked about her housing situation, the mother told staff that she was staying with a friend and looking for an income-based apartment. The mother stated she had to save her money for housing that’s why she called about the coats. The staff was able to provide coats, hats, and gloves for all the children. The staff was able to provide a list of housing resources within the community. Later that month, the mother came in to get diapers and shared with staff that she was getting fast-tracked into an income-based apartment.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

.

October 2022

A mother staying in a shelter came into the FRC for diapers and coats. The mother saw that we had free rapid covid tests and took some for her family. The mother talked with staff about the difficulties of living in a full shelter and worries about covid.

Kaniala Aragon, Visitation Supervisor

September 2022

A homeless family referred to FRC by Advocap was provided with coats, diapers, and clothing for four children. The mother had the children try on the different coats and pick their favorite hats in our lobby. The mother also signed up for classes with our parent educators.

Kimberly Oreck, Executive Director

.

September 2022

An expecting mother came into FRC and stated that she was due in a month. The mother said it was her third child and she had recently lost her job. The mother also shared that she just moved into income-based housing. The mother signed up for SOAR and FRC was able to provide her with wipes, diapers, nursing pads, bottles, a blanket, and clothing.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

.

August 2022

A teen mother came into the FRC and needed diapers, wipes, and other baby items. The staff was able to get her the aid necessary to take care of her child. Staff also helped the mother access ethnic hair products for her and her child. The mother was grateful because normal shampoo dries their scalp out.

Kimberly Oreck, Executive Director

August 2022

A mother came in and needed diapers, wipes, and hygiene products. The mother also talked about her autistic child. I was able to talk to her about my experiences raising an autistic child. I was able to give her multiple resources in the community to help her and her child.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

.

July 2022

An emotional mother came into the Family Resource Center for diapers and wipes. When staff asked her if she needed any additional aid, she disclosed that her family was going to be evicted tonight and that she needed any additional aid. She shared with staff that she had three children 10 months, a 1-year-old, and an 8-year-old with her. FRC was able to give her two suitcases and additional supplies. Our organization gave her additional diapers, clothes, hygiene items, formula, and baby food. The staff was also able to give the mother a Goodwill voucher. The mother had disclosed that she did not know where to go and planned to go back to Chicago with her children via a Greyhound bus. The Family Resource Center staff sat down with the client and contacted several agencies within the community. Staff helped the family to get into a local shelter and called various other agencies to find motel vouchers before they move in. Staff assisted her for close to two hours and after contacting multiple agencies were able to get her fast-tracked into a shelter and find housing for two days before the move-in.

Kimberly Oreck, Executive Director

.

June 2022

Nurses from the SSM Health OB floor called the Family Resource Center and explained to the staff that they had a Spanish-speaking woman brought to the emergency room with stomach pain. They discovered she was going into labor. The mother gave birth to a premature baby girl and did not have anything prepared for her. The family had no idea that she was pregnant. The Family Resource Center assembled an emergency care package with infant and new mother supplies. The staff at SSM stated that they were low on staff and unable to retrieve the supplies. A Family Resource Center staff member drove to the hospital and brought the care package and supplies to the sixth floor. The staff also explained to the supervising nurse the various services and Spanish resources available.

Kaniala Aragon, Visitation Supervisor

May 2022

A mother from Chilton called to ask if the FRC had a specific type of formula. The mother told staff that she had been driving to Milwaukee to find this type of formula. Due to the formula shortage, the mother could not find it at WIC or any of the stores in the area. The distribution center kept a supply of the specific form and was able to help the mother.

Lisa Wolter, Parent Educator

May 2022

A mother called the FRC and asked for a formula. The mother stated that she had gone to all the stores in Fond du Lac, Appleton, Oshkosh, and Ripon and could not find her child’s formula anywhere. Staff had the mother sign up for the distribution center and helped the mother to get the formula she needed for her child.

Jessica Schowalter, Office Manager

.

May 2022

A mother came into FRC with her two young children for diapers and wipes. However, upon talking to the young mother she disclosed that she just become homeless and the family was living in their van. Our files indicated that she hadn’t utilized our services in over a year. Staff helped the mother to get diapers, wipes, formula, bottles, baby books, and a large assortment of hygiene items. The staff also helped the mother to pick out outfits for her 1-year-old. The mother dressed the child in one of the outfits she picked out in our lobby. The staff also gave her a list of resources to reach out to for shelter.

Kimberly Oreck, Executive Director

.

Learn more about our impact.