An event in Maplewood on Saturday will offer help for families having trouble making ends meet.
The event, which is called Project Family Connect and is now in its third year, is a one-stop spot where families can sign up for food stamps, housing aid or medical assistance. They can also get free dental screenings and help with resumes.
Jennifer Terry, a third grade teacher at Skyview Elementary in Oakdale, started the event when she saw students in her classroom were struggling with basic needs. She said families need assistance to stop a downward slide.
"They don't know that, one, that there's help out there. And two, that they even qualify. They feel like they're lost and don't know what to do," Terry said. "So I feel like until we connect them with resources that improvement can't happen, because they're struggling day by day just to exist."
Families get more than pamphlets, she said -- they get signed up for help.
"You can get all the Ramsey County services, from energy to food to medical assistance," Terry said. "We have nurses doing vision checks and hearing screenings. We have people coming and doing haircuts for families. You name it. Anything that a family in need would need access to is there."
Project Family Connect is aimed at families in the North St. Paul-Maplewood-Oakdale school district. It is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Woodland Hills Community Church in Maplewood.
Terry expected more than 600 people to attend.