In Rockford, as in many communities, the social service providers have moved away from the center of the city, and are scattered throughout the city. The geographical change has created a huge barrier for the impoverished to access physical and mental health care, as well as social services. Eighteen percent of Rockford residents live below the national poverty level. One in 5 people experience mental illness, with one in 25 people live with a serious mental illness, such as bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, or chronic depression. Nearly 60 percent of adults diagnosed with a mental illness discontinue receiving services, or get help sporadically.
LOVE Rockford removes many of the barriers that prevent those in need from contacting social and medical service providers. During this four-hour event, individuals and families are able to engage with service provider representatives to determine which services are a fit for them.
LOVE Rockford also offers several tangibles onsite, including a healthy lunch, books, and food to take home.