If you are interested in having us speak at any event regarding our services and programs please call (804) 633-5071.
For more information regarding Social Services in Virginia please click on www.dss.virginia.gov.
Functions of the Department are handled by three divisions: Eligibility, Services, and Administrative. The Department should be contacted to determine specific eligibility requirements for program. Federal law and the Virginia Human Rights Act, bar discrimination on the basis of age, race, sex, disability, religious creed, national origin and political belief. All procedures established by the State of Virginia for ensuring fair and equitable treatment of applicants and recipients of public assistance are followed.
This unit receives and processes initial applications for assistance and provides initial screening and assessments for other service needs by families. The unit has the responsibility of maintaining on-going benefits cases and conducting reviews as required for the following programs:
Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF):
Temporary financial assistance is paid to parent caretaker households in financial need and to certain relatives responsible for children who do not have parental support due to death, absence, incapacity, divorce or unemployment. For parent caretaker households who are required to participate in the VIEW work program, assistance is limited to two years unless a hardship exception is made. Within two years employment, child care and other support services are provided and/or child support obligations established. For all parent caretaker households, total assistance is limited to a five year lifetime maximum.
Emergency Assistance to Needy Families’ Children:
Financial assistance may be paid to a family or provider of services during specific emergency situations.
SNAP (Virginia Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
This federal program supplements the food budgets of low-income households to help assure needy persons a nutritionally adequate diet. Eligibility is determined by financial need, income resources and non-financial criteria such as number in household, student status, and work registration.
Prevention and detection of fraud in benefit programs and child day care. Collection of monies owed the Agency due to both fraud and unintentional program violations.
Energy Assistance Program:
Eligible low-income households receive assistance with their home energy needs. To be eligible, households must have a heating expense and income must be within set limits. Faulty or hazardous heating or cooling systems may also be repaired and general maintenance performed. Fuel application periods are: October 10 thru November 13, crisis purchases and repairs November 1 thru March 15, crisis primary fuel January 2 thru March 15. Cooling assistance application period: June 15 thru August 15.
The Individual and Family Grants program gives financial help to victims of major disasters when the President declares that an emergency or disaster area exists.
Auxiliary Grants Program:
This program provides income supplements to recipients of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and certain other aged, blind or disabled individuals residing in a licensed assisted living facility or an approved adult foster care home.
This federal and state funded program provides medical care for specified needy persons. Eligibility for Medicaid is determined by the Social Services Department according to criteria established by the Department of Medical Assistance Services and the Virginia General Assembly.
Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS):
Determines eligibility for health insurance for children under age 19 and pregnant women who are over the income level for Medicaid. State and Local Hospitalization: This state and local program provides direct payments for hospital services for individuals who are unable to pay for required medical services.
Information and Referral: The Department provides information regarding services and refers citizens to other agencies as appropriate. Emergency/Crisis Services: Services are rendered based on available agency/community resources and are offered to families needing short term, one-time assistance to resolve a temporary crisis.
This unit provides administrative services agency-wide. Functions include budget, fiscal and accounting activities, customer services, personnel, purchasing, technical and program support, preparation and maintenance of cases, reports and correspondence.
This unit provides or arranges employment related services such as job training for TANF recipients in order to make the family as self-sufficient as possible. Additionally, services are provided to adults and children in families where the members may be “at risk” of abuse, neglect or exploitation or in need of specific services. The 24 hour, seven day a week child/adult abuse and neglect State HOTLINE number is 1-800-552-7096.
This service provides special programs for eligible participants designed to motivate and “mainstream” them into the world of work. This program is offered to recipients of TANF. The goal is to transition these individuals from dependence on public assistance to employment within two years.
Child Day Care Services for TANF Children:
Child care services in approved homes or centers can be arranged so certain parents can become employed or trained for employment.
Child Day Care Fee System Program:
Child care may be provided on a sliding scale for both former TANF recipients and income eligible families. This includes children participating in the Head Start program and substitute care needed for children requiring protection. Child Day Care Program (other): Counseling is available regarding selection of child care providers. Referrals may be made to other child care resources. Adult Protective Services: Reports of adult abuse, neglect, and exploitation are received and investigated. Services are provided with the goal of protecting persons 60 years of age and older and incapacitated adults 18 years of age and older from abuse, neglect and exploitation.
Services such as companion and adult day care services enable low-income, aged or disabled adults to remain in their homes. Assistance is provided in arranging appropriate long-term care when necessary. Assistance to transition back to the community is also provided when adults are released from institutions.
Child Protective Services:
Reports of abuse and neglect of children under 18 are investigated with the goal of protecting children from physical and medical neglect and from physical, sexual and emotional abuse. Services are also developed to prevent and alleviate family dysfunction. Callers may remain anonymous and confidentiality is always preserved.
Numerous services are necessary for children to become permanent members of a substitute family unit. Registries of families studied and approved for adoption and of children available for adoption are maintained, while staff work to bring these families and children together and assure legal requirements are met.
Foster Care/Foster Care Prevention:
Temporary substitute care is arranged for children who cannot be in their homes. The goal of foster care is a permanent home for each child. Returning to his/her own home is the first choice, followed by relative care, adoption, permanent foster care or independent living. Foster Care Prevention services are temporary, intensive support services (direct or purchased) for “at risk” families. These services are designed to support families in crisis and who are at risk of abusing/neglecting their children, or families whose child is before the juvenile court as a child in need of services.
Court Ordered Services/Interstate Requests:
Frequently local, neighboring or out of state courts will order home studies or case monitoring.
Family Preservation and Support/Prevention Services:
Supportive services are offered to families at risk of abuse/neglect. These can be direct, referred or purchased services.