Soon, Tysons Corner Center visitors will be able to access the internet for free, check out a library book and learn how to prepare for college or a career all from the same room.
After closing at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Fairfax County’s Community Services Room at the mall will reopen on Saturday (July 29) with an expanded array of services.
The launch will include a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10 a.m., followed by an open house so attendees can get acquainted with the available resources. The 2,280-square-foot room is located on the mall’s second level near Nordstrom.
“Our overall commitment is to create a stronger and interconnected community where everyone has access to vital resources, support, and opportunities,” Fairfax County Neighborhood & Community Services Communications Director Cristin Bratt said. “We hope this dedicated space for programming, community resources, library services and human services support will foster a sense of belonging in the Tysons area.”
According to NCS, Tysons Corner Center has provided the space to the county for “several years” as part of its development proffers or conditions. Prior to the pandemic, the room was used by Visit Fairfax, the county’s tourism agency.
Upon taking over management of the location, NCS says it decided to partner with other county agencies and local nonprofits to offer support services that residents may have difficulty accessing otherwise, particularly with Tysons still waiting on public facilities like a community center and library.
The community services room will include two computers that anyone can use to access the internet for the purpose of applying for jobs, social services benefits, a library card and other county resources.
NCS, which provides recreational, educational and developmental programs as well as basic needs assistance, will also use the space to offer restorative services and creative outlets for teens “engaged in high-risk behavior,” according to a press release.
To further assist youth and families in need, the department has partnered with the Arlington-based nonprofit Edu-Futuro, which focuses on immigrants and other underserved individuals.
The organization will provide mentorship, education, leadership development, case management, and college and workforce development services. Its staff at the community services room will be bilingual and trained to work with Latino, immigrant and English-learning youth.
The community services room will also host Fairfax County Public Library’s outreach team for school-age and teen services and the Fairfax County Department of Family Services:
Library Services for Teens — Fairfax County Public Library’s School-Age and Teen Services Outreach team will provide library outreach to teens who face barriers in accessing library services by empowering and engaging youth and demonstrating the value and relevance of the library. Planned Library services for teens include gaming, arts and crafts, STEM, book clubs, library resource workshops and more, as well as provide access to popular library materials via a curated pop-up collection available for checkout.
Domestic & Sexual Violence Services — The Department of Family Services’ Domestic and Sexual Violence Services’ onsite services will include education; training; help planning for safety; crisis intervention; and referrals to resources for shelter, housing, counseling, and legal assistance. Services are available to individuals, families and community members impacted by domestic and sexual violence, human trafficking and stalking.
Providence District Supervisor Dalia Palchik, who represents most of Tysons, says she hopes the community services room will serve as a “hub of opportunity” where different organizations can work together.
“Empowering communities is a catalyst for positive change,” Palchik said in a statement to FFXnow. “The new Community Services Room at Tysons provides a collaborative space for individuals to connect, learn, and grow together and serves as a beacon of opportunity, fostering unity and well-being among our residents.”
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Live Fairfax is a bi-weekly column exploring Fairfax County. This recurring column is sponsored and written by Sharmane Medaris of McEnearney Associates. Questions? Reach Sharmane at 813-504-4479. As your neighborhood expert in Fairfax…
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