Mayor Barrett Declares December 31, 2007 to be Irma and Aubrey Walker Day

Mayor Tom Barrett declared Dec. 31, 2007 to be “Irma and Aubrey Walker Day” in the City of Milwaukee.

The Wisconsin State Assembly also commended the Walkers, who are the founders of My Home, Your Home Inc.

Mayor Tom Barrett issued a proclamation declaring Dec. 31, 2007 as “Irma and Aubrey Walker Day” in the City of Milwaukee. The proclamation says:

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Whereas, the City of Milwaukee joins the Milwaukee Health Department on Dec. 31, 2007 in celebration of the retirement of Irma and Aubrey Walker, and their contributions to the community through My Home, Your Home Inc.; and

Whereas, Irma and Aubrey Walker, founders of My Home, Your Home Inc., have for 18 years displayed a genuine interest in promoting community cohesion and  economic stability; Irma Walker as President and Aubrey Walker as Facilities Manager have consistently strived to develop and secure the social well-being of the community; and

Whereas, Irma and Aubrey Walker have implemented programs such as Treatment Foster Care, which provides nurturing homes for the child welfare system’s most severely abused children; Wraparound Care, which assures the provision of services for at-risk children and their families; and Access to Recovery, a comprehensive alcohol-and-other-drug-abuse (AODA) service; and

Whereas, Irma and Aubrey Walker have displayed a lasting ambition and strong desire for success, developing My Home, Your Home Inc. into a comprehensive social welfare organization with four locations, annually assisting more than 1,000 children, adults and families, with services for homeless women, displaced boys and those of want and need; and

Whereas, Irma and Aubrey Walker have maintained strong relationships with family and friends throughout their career, demonstrating a positive influence on those closest to them, especially their six children and 15 foster children; the  Milwaukee community thanks them for their service and wishes them many more years of health, happiness and success;

Now, therefore, I, Tom Barrett, mayor of the City of Milwaukee, do hereby proclaim Monday, Dec. 31, 2007 to be ‘Irma and Aubrey Walker Day’ throughout the City of Milwaukee.”

Also, an estimated 150 people attended a Retirement Reception for Irma and Aubrey Walker, the founders of My Home, Your Home Inc., on Nov. 1, 2007 at the agency’s Administration Building, 6200 W. Center St.

At the reception, state Representatives Barbara Toles and Annette Polly Williams presented the Walkers with a citation by the Assembly commending them “for their many years of dedicated service to their community.” The Assembly’s citation was sponsored by the Legislature’s Black and Hispanic Caucus.

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Another state elected official, State Senator Lena C. Taylor, was represented at
the reception by her legislative aide, Tonya Y. Edwards.

Another highlight of the Retirement Reception was a presentation of a large donation from the St. Francis Bank Foundation to further the work of My Home, Your Home. The check was presented by Julia H. Taylor, president of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, who is a longtime supporter of My Home, Your Home.

Mrs. Walker – former chief operations officer of the YWCA of Greater Milwaukee — and her husband founded My Home, Your Home in 1989 with the intention of improving the foster-care system. The Walkers raised six children and have been parents to 15 foster children. They have also been volunteers in many community activities.

In 1993, the Walkers opened their first My Home, Your Home program. It was a foster-child receiving home that provided temporary beds for children ages 3-7 until social workers could find a more permanent placement for the children. The home helped keep siblings together by giving the social workers more time to find a home that would take more than one child.

In its first year, My Home, Your Home helped about 50 children and its annual budget was only $24,000. My Home, Your Home has grown a lot since then. It now offers a wide range of social services to more than 1,000 children, adults and families annually. It has more than 80 employees.

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My Home, Your Home is now headed by Executive Director Constance Palmer-Jones, a veteran social-services administrator who is one of the six children in the Walkers’ family. Palmer-Jones previously was My Home Your Home’s associate director and human resource manager, and earlier was the agency’s program/activity director. She has also served on the organization’s board.

She has also held positions as program director at the Lapham Park COA in Milwaukee, the Children and Family Resource Center in Racine, and the Institute for Child and Family  Development in Milwaukee. Palmer-Jones, who has two sons and has been a foster parent, holds a degree from the Milwaukee campus of Springfield College in human services, with a concentration in criminal justice, and has been accepted into a master’s degree program in management.

She has also received specialized training in community leadership, prenatal care, early childhood development, the care of mental-health clients and the care of children with special health needs. Palmer-Jones is on the board of directors of Capitol West Academy, a Milwaukee
charter school.

She also has been active with the Milwaukee YWCA, including its Little Sisters mentoring program; been a member of the board of 9 to 5; and founded Hands of Direction, an organization of volunteer women supporting the community and each other.

In addition to the Administration Building on Center St., My Home, Your Home has an auxiliary office at 1862 W. Fond du Lac Ave. The agency’s other facilities include Lissy’s Place, a haven for homeless women, and Amad’s Place, a stabilization center for displaced boys between the ages of 12 and 17.

My Home, Your Home’s other programs include Treatment Foster Care, providing safe and nurturing homes for the child welfare system’s most severely abused and neglected children; Wraparound Care, a court-ordered program serving at-risk children and their families; Family Supportive Services, which provides in-home assistance and Access to Recovery, an alcohol and other drug abuse (AODA) service.

Funding for My Home, Your Home comes from community donors, companies, foundations and government agencies.

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