Child Protective Services – The department receives and screens calls alleging child abuse and/or neglect through our office phone at (540) 864-5117. After normal business hours callers are directed to the Virginia Department of Social Services (VDSS) hotline at (800) 552-7096. Family Services “Specialist” respond to valid complaints by conducting investigations and family assessments. Prevention services may be offered when a valid complaint does not exist but where there are indications of family problems that could place the child at risk of future abuse, neglect, or foster care placement. Where indicated, risk assessments and safety plans are developed. Services are provided both directly by the Family Services “Specialist” and by referral to other agencies. Additional information about Child Protective Services is available on the VDSS web page.
Foster Care – Children are transferred to the legal custody of the DSS for the purpose of a temporary placement in an out-of-home setting. The courts may place a youth in foster care after finding that the child is abused and/or neglected, “in need of services” (CHINS), delinquent, or upon a parent’s petition for relief of custody. Family Services “Specialist”attempt to reunify the child with his/her family or to move the child into some other permanent placement. For older teenagers the department will help the youth prepare for transition to independent living. The department recruits and trains foster parents who receive a stipend to cover a child’s daily needs. Medical needs are also provided for by the department. Additional information on foster care is available on the Virginia Department of Social Services/Foster Care web site.
Adoption – Children in foster care, for whom return home or placement with a relative are not viable alternatives, are often placed for adoption. A Family Services “Specialist” strives to match the child and prospective adoptive families to find a home that will meet the needs of the child. Support services are offered to help maintain the adoptive placement. A financial subsidy for the adoptive family is available in many cases. More information about adoption is available on the Virginia Department of Social Services/Adoption web site.
Child Care and Development – The department determines eligibility for assistance with the costs of obtaining child care. TANF recipients who are employed or in the VIEW program, are eligible for this assistance. Child care assistance may also be provided on a fee system basis, if funds are available.
Adult Protective Services and Adult Services – By calling our office (540) 864-5117, or after normal business hours by calling the VDSS hotline (888) 832-3858 complaints of adult abuse, neglect or exploitation are received and screened. Investigations are conducted, and when needed, services are offered to the adult. The department assists in the screening and placement of adults in nursing homes or assisted living centers. The implementation of home health care or homemaker services may also be facilitated. Additional information and brochures can be found on the Virginia Department of Social Services/Adult Services web site.
Services Intake – Emergency assistance is offered, as funds are available, to assist citizens experiencing a temporary crises such as food shortages, utility cut-offs, and potential eviction. Clients are counseled about ways to resolve a variety of crisis problems that they face and referrals may be made to other agencies. Virginia Initiative for Employment not Welfare (VIEW) – VIEW is a program providing employment, education, and training opportunities to recipients of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) in attaining the goal of self-sufficiency. The program goals are to offer Virginians living in poverty the opportunity to: achieve economic independence by removing barriers and disincentives to work and by providing positive incentives to work; provide work skills necessary for self-sufficiency; offer job seeking/job keeping classes; allow families living in poverty to contribute materially to their own self-sufficiency; set out the responsibilities of and expectations for recipients of public assistance; obtain actual work experience through VIEW.