St. Jude Family Focus
The St. Jude Foundation (SJF) was founded by George Merrifield with his spouse June Hatfield Merrifield to help young people and their family members combat problems caused by a family member or family members being addicted to drugs or alcohol. Recognizing that success required collaboration, the SJF developed a number of strong community partnerships over the ensuing years; in particular making connections with the Archdiocese of Louisville and their Office of Multicultural Ministries, the University of Louisville’s Education Department and the St. Vincent De Paul Society.

The St. Jude House, located at the corner of Jackson and East St. Catherine Streets, stands today as a testament of the sustaining nature of the work the foundation began. This program was founded in 1986 through the determined leadership of June Merrifield and serves as a home and base of support for young women who are in recovery. The program today is operated by St. Vincent de Paul Society.

In addition to this work, the SJF assisted numerous other organizations, providing financial support to the missions of groups such as Catholic Charities, Project Women, Boys Haven, the Boy and Girls Clubs, Intervention Research Center, Kentucky School for Alcohol and Drug Studies, World Vision, CLOUT and the United Negro College Fund.

After many years of working on issues related to drug and alcohol abuse and witnessing first hand how negatively these abuses affect communities and families, George and June determined that there was a pressing need to enlarge the mission of the St. Jude Foundation. Rather than focus exclusively on treatment and recovery, they wanted to take a pre-emptive approach by placing greater emphasis on assisting families in developing the life skills that equip a family unit to create sustainable success and hopefully prevent substance abuse through supportive family intervention.

The foundation’s rich history of developing and fostering partnerships, positions it well to realize this new mission. It can be noted that at the start of 2009 there are few other non-profit service agencies poised to take such a lead or make itself a conduit to partnerships in this arena.

The St. Jude Family Focus program creates a unique opportunity for the entire family unit to come together in a facility resembling a residential apartment where their needs are assessed and a program plan is developed that includes career and emotional counseling, parenting skills, health assessments and treatment, problem solving, budgeting and many more subjects.


Family Focus Mission | Family Focus Goals | Detailed Curriculum


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