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Rhonda R. AllerySocial Services

Rhonda R. Allery
County Social Services Director

Lakes Social Social Service District
524 4th Ave NE  #19
Devils Lake, ND 58301-2400
662-7050
rrallery@nd.gov

Mission Statement:

Lakes Social Service District provides services to individuals and families who are vulnerable to meet basic needs and to promote self-sufficiency.

Values:
All people are treated with dignity and respect.
High quality service is the goals of all programs.
Promote a strong partnership with individual clients.
Promote leadership on community wide needs.
The agency will strive to be responsible and efficient stewards of all resources.

Overview:
Lakes Social Service District is a department of Ramsey and Towner County government that has been designated by law to provide poor relief and related services to the citizens of Ramsey and Towner County.  The majority of the services/programs offered by the county are done in conjunction with state and federal agencies, particularly the North Dakota Department of Human Services.  Lakes Social Service District provides a wide range of services including both social services and economic assistance programs.  Some services are provided directly by county employees and others are provided through contracts.  In 2007, Ramsey County Social Services provided services/benefits to over 2,000 individuals each month.

Administrative Structure:
Lakes Social Service District is directly responsible to the Lakes Social Service Board.  The Board is accountable to the Ramsey and Towner County Commissions and, where designated, the North Dakota Department of Human Services.  The Board consists of six members who presently are also the five County Commissioner & one Deputy Auditor.  The Lakes Social Service District Board meets monthly.  The Board appoints the Director of Social Services.

Personnel:
In 2008, the Lakes Social Service District has 29 authorized/budgeted positions.  Personnel include a County Director, a child care licensor, social workers, eligibility workers, homemakers, and a variety of support staff.

Budget:
The 2008, the Lakes Social Service District operating budget is over $1.8 million dollars (including approximately $1 million in county funds).  This budget includes both the county share of funding for services and some state/federal program funds for both Ramsey and Towner County.  It does not include all financial benefits paid to/for clients through programs such as Medical Assistance, TANF,Child Care Assistance, LiHeap, and Food Stamps that is estimated at $9.5 million annually for Ramsey and Towner County.  If those costs were also included it is estimated that the total district-based social services expenditures would be over $11.3 million annually.

Civil Rights Statement:
Ramsey County makes available all services/assistance without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, handicap or political affiliation and is subject to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975 as amended and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1991.

PROGRAMS AND PROJECTS

  1. ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE
 

Children's Special Health Services (formerly Crippled Children's Services): A state funded program administered by the county to identify, diagnose, and treat children who have congenital handicaps or other conditions resulting from injuries or illnesses. Eligible families must meet income guidelines.

ND Health Tracks (formerly EPSDT): A program of preventive health care directed to children who are eligible for medical assistance.  Emphasis is on early diagnosis and treatment.

TANF - Temporary Assistance to Needy Families formerly AFDC: A program to provide financial assistance to children, deprived of parental support, who are in need of money for food, shelter, clothing, and personal needs.  

Food Stamps: A cooperative effort of County, State and Federal governments to assure proper nutrition for all poor, eligible participants by increasing their food buying power.

Foster Care: A program whereby payment for room, board, supervision, clothing and personal needs can be made for children who cannot live with relatives, but in licensed foster homes.

General Assistance (GA): The General Assistance Program is an emergency assistance program intended to meet basic maintenance needs of families in financial crisis, disabled adults, and burial of deceased poor persons.

Low Income Home Energy Program (LIHEAP): A program to provide emergency and home energy assistance to eligible low income households to help defray the expense of fuel costs.

Medical Assistance (MA): A program designed to assist individuals and families who do not have enough income to obtain health care. Within the quidelines of Medical Assistance, BCAP is a payment to subsidize the lost of care for eligible individuals in Basic Care Facilities or Adult Foster Care.

Child Care Assistance (CCA): A federal program to provide financial assistance to low income families to meet their child care expenses resulting from employment, education or training.

Subsidized Adoption Payments

  1. FAMILY SERVICE DIVISION

Child Protection Assessments: A program that provides for an assessment of allegations of child abuse or neglect and determines a finding that a family needs services.  There are 3 possible determinations: Services required, services recommended and no service needed.

 Emergency On-Call Services: A service that permits law enforcement and the courts to contact a social worker to assess child welfare matters after office hours and on holidays.

Permanency & Safety Funds (formerly known as Wrap-Around Financial Assistance): A service that may provide financial assistance to a family to help prevent the placement of children in out-of-home care.  Other avenues of payment for these services must not be available to this family.

Family Case Management Services: A set of services that includes therapeutic intervention and case management of families that have been identified with children in out-of -home placement or at imminent risk of out- of- home placement.  These families may receive these services involuntarily depending upon the nature of the problem.  Other services or programs may be coordinated through case management.  Responsibility includes case planning and service termination decision.

Child Placement Services (child foster care): A process of placing children who are in the custody of the county into some type of out-of- home placements, such as foster or residential care.

Family, Group and Center Child Care Licensing and Child Care Registration: A service that permits individuals and groups to provide licensed child care.  Licensing requires minimal standards for care and the physical environment.  All individuals who care for more than six unrelated individuals must be licensed or registered in North Dakota.

Family Foster Care Licensing: A service that recruits, trains and recommends licensing for the care of children in need of out-of-home placement.  This includes a home study and determining the fitness of a family to be considered as a foster parent.

Parent Aide Services: A service that will place a para-professional to work with families, providing education, on-hands tasks, and support, in order to meet predetermined goals and prevent out-of-home placement.

Prime Time Day Care Services: Provides financial payment to licensed day care providers for the care of children who are victims of neglect of abuse and/or are at risk out-of-home placement.

Crossroads Child Care Program: Provides for financial payment for day care for infants of minors who are unwed and wish to finish high school.  Payments will cover the time while they are attending classes.

Intensive In-home Services: Authorized by CSS and provided by The Village through a contract with ND Department of Human Services) provides intensive home based intervention into families at the time of crisis.  The purpose is to alleviate stress and maintain the family unit.  These services are provided in the family home for up to six weeks.

  1. SERVICES TO THE ELDERLY AND DISABLED
    Provides comprehensive social services to the adult and/or disabled population of Ramsey County.  Services are provided to adults who are frail, elderly, physically ill or disabled, seriously mentally ill, and to adults who may have a personality disorder, cognitive impairment or abuse substances.   Services are also provided to families or care givers of such adults.  The primary goals are to ensure that the least restrictive environment is provided, to prevent abuse, neglect, self-neglect or exploitation, and to promote self-care and independent living.  The service may be provided directly by Ramsey County staff or through the use of county authorized QSP’s – Qualified Service Providers, or authorized family members.
    Home and Community Based Services.

In-home services are funded for the purpose of maximizing independent living for individuals choosing such services in lieu of long-term care in a nursing facility.  Services are funded by the Service Payments for the Elderly and Disabled (SPED) Program, Expanded Sped Program, Targeted Case Management or the Medicaid Waiver.  Services include:

Enviromental Modification: An in-home evaluation to identify adaptive devices, equipment or modifications, which enhance in independence and functional capabilities of individuals who may otherwise be unable to remain in their home.

Adult Day Care: A program of social and related support services for individuals, age 21-years and over, provided on a regularly scheduled basis on or more days per week.

Adult Family Foster Care: Includes the provision of 24-hour room, board, supervision, and other cares as designated to an adult who is determined to be unable to function independently, or who may benefit from a family home environment.  The care is provided in a licensed private home.

HCBS Case Management: The provision of specialized assistance, based on the results of a comprehensive assessment for the individual desiring and needing help in selecting or obtaining services and in coordinating the services.

Chore Services: The provision of one time, intermittent or occasional home tasks, including house cleaning, minor home maintenance, minor home repair, select installation, and walk maintenance.

Family Home Care: The provision of room, board, supervisory, and personal care on a 24-hour basis by the spouse, parent, adult child, adult sibling, grandparent, adult grandchild, adult niece or adult nephew.  Persons who are in-laws can also be considered.  Care can be in the client's or caregiver's home.

Homemaker: The provision of non-personal care tasks such as housekeeping, laundry, and shopping, and which enable the individual to maintain or develop independence needed to remain at home.  

Personal Care (previously known as Home Health Aide): This program provides a trained person to perform and teach basic health care tasks in the home of the individual receiving the care.  These basic health care tasks include: taking temperature and blood pressure, giving tub and bed baths, shampooing, bed positioning, range of motion and skin, mouth and foot care.

Non-Medical Transportation: The provision of transportation that enables the individual to access essential community services such as grocery or pharmacy in order to maintain themselves in their homes.

Respite Care: The provision of temporary relief to the individual's primary caregiver for a specified period of time.  The caregiver is relieved of the stresses and demands associated with continuous daily care.

  1. Information and Referral
    Assistance is provided regarding resources in areas such as employment or training, housing, transportation, senior services, legal financial, medical, mental health services or other public or private human services.
  1. Child Support Enforcement – See Child Support Enforcement _ Lake Region Child Support

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