To ensure everlasting stability and security for our neighbors in need.
Strengthening our communities by offering opportunities for individuals and families to achieve self-sufficiency by providing leadership, support services and access to local resources.
HCS Family Services provides services to over 3,700 low-income individuals living in Southeast DuPage County including the Villages of Hinsdale, Clarendon Hills, Darien, Burr Ridge, Westmont, Willow brook, and Oakbrook.
In the Beginning
The Hinsdale-Clarendon Hills Chapter of the United Charities of Du Page County opened its office in the Hinsdale Memorial Building September 21, 1936. Some of the services were, visiting relatives in Hinsdale at the request of social agencies in other cities and acting as a clearing house with other organizations: resources of people needed medical and dental care.
“Since October 1, 1936, 31 men and 41 women have registered for work. The office has received 70 calls for maids and filled 10, 35 calls for women and 79 for men to work by the day, all of which were filled. Two men have been placed in steady employment.
In 1937 it was written into our Constitution that Hinsdale Community Service would “act as a clearinghouse for organizations which perform a charitable or welfare function in Hinsdale High School District 86 and such adjacent areas as the Board of Directors may approve from time to time.”
The story goes…near the end of the great Depression, in the summer of 1936, some of Hinsdale’s residents got word that their jobless neighbors were unable to afford necessities such as food, rent and ice deliveries. Back then iceboxes were dependent upon huge blocks of ice to keep food cold and also electric fans placed behind the ice provided cool air. During the winter, these same residents assisted neighbors in providing coal, oil or firewood to provide warmth for their less fortunate neighbors. This was HCS’ beginning.
Now, of course, we do similar services for our neighbors in need, but do not deliver ice or coal. For at least 40 hours every week our doors in our main office above the Hinsdale Public Library and the Village of Hinsdale offices are open to all people from our service area who use HCS as the first resort and others who experience us as a last port of call after all other resources have been exhausted. Today local ministers refer people in need to us, as do Department of Human Services, TANF (Public Aid) workers, school personnel and social service providers. Most of our initial contact with people in need comes when they access our on site or mobile pantry. This fiscal year, as of October 2013, there have been nearly 4,500 visits to our pantries.
In 2010 Hinsdale Community Service changed its name to HCS Family Services to represent the many services and education we provide to the needy in Willowbrook, Westmont, Darien, Clarendon Hills, Hinsdale, Burr Ridge, and Oak Brook.
HCS has recently set its sights on creating and managing an Outreach Center in the Willowbrook Corners. In a way, this Outreach Center is returning to our roots. HCS occupied an office in Warterfall Glen Apartments Complex in Willowbrook Corners. HCS has always had many clients living in this general area where transportation has often been a problem. The Waterfall Glen’ owner provided office space for us to conduct a food pantry, rent free.
HCS is located in Hinsdale’s Memorial Building and the Village of Hinsdale provides free office space and space for our in house Food Pantry. When the memorial Building was dedicated, office space was provided in perpetuity. It is the way the Village gives back to Hinsdale’s needy and to those in need in our seven communities.
In 2014, we continue to work to foster positive outcomes for the needy, rather than simply place a band aid on a problem. Through our case management programming, HCS Family Services works with low-income families and individuals by providing quality services that encourage personal growth. Our programs focus on assisting individuals and families find long-term solutions that lead to independence, thereby creating a stronger more vibrant community and breaking the poverty cycle.