DIRECT ACTION WELFARE GROUP INC

Rating: 4.85 stars   13 reviews

Issues: Children & Youth, Human Services

Location: PO Box 20079 Charleston WV 25362 USA

Mission: Direct Action Welfare Group Inc. (DAWG) is a statewide organization comprised of public assistance recipients, low wage workers, and people in poverty. Direct Action Welfare Group’s vision is the end of poverty in West Virginia. In order to make this vision a reality, we advocate with low-income families for economic justice. Direct Action Welfare Group believes…. •Poor people of West Virginia can stand together as an organized community to fight against discrimination and the suffering of poverty. •No matter how poor you are you have a voice and rights as a human being. •Every individual should be treated fairly regardless of race, creed, nationality, income, sexual orientation, religion, gender, age, or educational level. •Access to services and assistance is a right and not a benefit •Everyone has the right to a good education including post-secondary education, medical, dental, and vision care, a job at a living wage, affordable childcare, decent housing and adequate food and clothing. •Every mother should have the option to choose to stay home and care for her children or work.
Results: We started as welfare moms, women meeting in the living room of a low income housing project and have grown to over 600 members. Not only have we been able to grow in size but we have been able to influence the way people in poverty are seen in West Virginia. Through our organizing efforts, DAWG has been able to win $8 million to stop cuts to our state child care and school clothing voucher programs; to win restoration of funds for transportation and pre-employment dental and vision programs for welfare recipients; to stop destruction of a public housing community in Charleston: and to win a state funded program that allows welfare recipients to stay in college and receive benefits. Our current work not only encompasses welfare issue but also the issues of low wage workers, teens, grandparents, Medicaid recipients, and others who experience the problems of poverty on a daily basis. In 2009 DAWG hosted a Leadership School, with the Poverty Initiative of Union Theological Seminary, which brought poverty leaders together from all over the world to discuss issues and to share knowledge.
Target demographics: Low income families throughout the state of West Virginia. Through our Teen DAWG program we focus on "at risk" youth throughout the state with a concentration on youth residing in public housing communities.
Direct beneficiaries per year: Our training programs directly impact over 200 individuals per year, our organizing efforts directly impact over 600 people throughout the state. Our Teen DAWG program directlyimpacts over 100 youth.
Geographic areas served: The entire state of West Virginia.
Programs: What We Do Whatever is necessary to ensure that people in poverty are heard and listened to on issues that affect our lives • Empower current and former welfare recipients, low wage workers, and people living in poverty by providing them with the knowledge and the tools to change their lives. • Educate current and former welfare recipients, low wage workers, and persons living in poverty on their rights and how to advocate on behalf of themselves and others concerning their rights. • Organize people in poverty including youth to provide a voice to be heard on the local, state, and national level. • Provide training, support, and advocacy to empower people in poverty to be heard on the national, regional, and state levels to ensure that they have a voice in the policies that affect them. • Organize people in poverty to become leaders in their community. •Provide a space where youth in poverty can organize around issues they are concerned with – our Teen DAWG program
2013 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 55-0786098
304-590-8050
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

DAWG helped me get back in school and how to talk to important people in my community. Since getting with DAWG I am not afraid to talk to legislators and let them know what its like for me and my kids.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would make sure everybody was part of DAWG.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

DAWG really gets it. They understand what its like to be poor and have to make it. They're not like all these others ran by people with money who just want to help poor people. DAWG is poor people. Its so cool to find a place that knows what its like and really wants to help change things for us.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make sure more people knew about DAWG and came and got involved.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

I came to WV 2 and half years ago. DAWG has been helping me with housing issues, social security, and navigating the social service system. Every time I needed them they were there to help and answer questions.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

finding a place to live, getting my foodstamps, social security, and medicaid. I also have a friend who DAWG also helped get his social security and deal with housing problems.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

How did you find this group?

A friend told me about them.

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

By being involved with DAWG I have become more involved in my community and making change. I attend city council meetings now and take an active role in my community.

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