Development Corporation resumes operation in Northwest Indiana


About a year ago, Metropolitan Oasis CDC CEO Toya Robinson was preparing to close the doors of the organization that her father, the late Pastor Floyd Dumas, Sr., found­ed more than 30 years ago. The longstanding government contract that had been in place for decades was not renewed, and it appeared that the non-profit agency locat­ed in the heart of Midtown Gary would no longer provide counseling and other social services to youth and families in Gary and surround­ing areas.

“I had accepted that this was the end and had begun to move on to pursue other endeavors, but God had other plans,” said Robinson. “I discovered that the journey was not over but rather moving in a dif­ferent direction.”

Earlier this year, Robinson received word that the agency had won a new contract to operate the RE­FORM Family Preservation Pro­gram. According to the Indiana Department of Children Services (INDCS) website, the REFORM Family Preservation Program in­cludes, “the assessment of the child/parent/family resulting in an appro­priate service/treatment plan that is based on the assessed need. The clear goal for these services is to pre­serve the family and avoid the trau­ma of removal for the child, provid­ed it is safe for them to remain with their identified caregiver.”

“I was ecstatic,” said Robinson. “I was excited for those staff members who would be able to return, and I was especially happy for the families we would be able to serve.”

The team at Metropolitan Oa­sis CDC is now practicing evi­dence-based models designed to assess, treat and restore broken fam­ilies as one unit in a familiar dwell­ing. The agency’s previous contract revolved around removing a child from the home and providing ser­vices absent of the family unit.

“The REFORM program allows us to work with the entire fami­ly in a safe zone where they can collectively idea their issues then work together to solve them all with the guidance of a licensed professional from our team,” said Robinson.

With a global pandemic occurring in the midst of this new opportuni­ty, Robinson and her team were de­termined to forge ahead. Staff mem­bers currently work remotely while conducting counseling and other wraparound services in the homes of clients. Protective precautions are taken for every visit including social distancing, disinfecting and mandatory face coverings.

With the new services also came a new vision for the organization. Robinson shares that going forward, Metropolitan Oasis CDC will be known as “Oasis.” The agency’s re­branding initiative includes a new logo, which has been completed along with updated printed mate­rials and a new website which is un­der construction.

“With Oasis embarking on a new chapter, we thought it was the per­fect time to freshen up our brand,” said Robinson. “Our community can still expect exceptional service from our team with a commitment to positively impact the families and communities we serve.”

For more information about Oa­sis and its programs, contact Rob­inson at trobinson@metropolitano­ or call 219-381-4537.

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