NNH opens satellite location

Northside Neighborhood House is moving forward with its five-year strategic plan by establishing a temporary satellite office at Dallas Bay Baptist Church.

NNH, which has its main office in North Chattanooga, serves clients in seven ZIP codes north of the river to the Hamilton County line.

In 2006, 35 percent of NNH’s clients came from the northern part of Hamilton County, from areas such as Hixson, Soddy-Daisy and Sale Creek. The percentage of clients served in these areas has now jumped to 50 percent.

“It shows the need is shifting,” said NNH Director Rachel Gammon.

To accommodate clients from those areas who lack access to transportation, NNH recently established a satellite office in the northern part of the county to bring the services to the clients.

NNH is now in the second year of its five-year plan, which was funded by a grant received by the Community Foundation in 2012. At the time, NNH was both expanding its services and experiencing an increase in clients. The nonprofit brought in a consulting service to help bring it through its strategic planning process.

“We were looking at other needs, gaps in the program and how to serve our clients more efficiently,” Gammon said.

Among the needs identified was access to transportation to reach NNH for assistance. NNH must personally meet with each client before he or she can receive assistance, said Gammon.

The satellite office will provide Direct Emergency Assistance with prescriptions and utility bills. Case workers will be there seeing clients Tuesdays and Thursdays.

While serving clients in the satellite office, NNH will be asking people what services would benefit them and their families. The organization will use the information to plan which services to offer at its permanent satellite location to be modeled after the North Chattanooga location.

“We want to make sure we’re responding to the needs of the community,” Gammon said. “We know our programs are effective, and we would love to replicate those at the northern end of the county.”

NNH will continue to evaluate the needs of its clients in the northern part of the county and begin its search for a permanent satellite location, said Gammon.

One of her goals is to establish connections in the community, especially with faith-based organizations already helping those in need in the area, she added.

For more information or to receive assistance from NNH, call 267-2217. Clients must reside north of the river.

Email Emily Crisman at ecrisman@timesfreepress.com