ACCS Small Insights Logo
July 2010  Volume 1 Issue 6
Greetings!

We encourage you to forward this newsletter to your friends and family who may be interested in the work that Athens County Children Services does each day to support families and keep children safe.

Thank you!
 
Sherri Oliver
Insights Editor and Public Relations & Community Events Coordinator
Peanut Butter and Jelly Project

Over 65% of elementary students in Trimble and Federal Hocking Local Schools qualify for free school breakfast and lunch.  During the summer months families struggle to provide food for their children. 

PB & J

School Social Workers in these districts are heading the Peanut Butter & Jelly Project. Each child will receive a loaf of bread, a jar of peanut butter, and a jar of jelly. The project aims to serve 200 children each week for s
ix weeks (June 28th- August 6th).

Donations of unopened jars of peanut butter and jelly can be brought to Building 22 at Athens County Children Services now until August 6th.


Donations may also be brought to the following locations in and around Athens:

Family Services works for families

There are two Family Services units which are responsible for providing in-home services for children who are at risk of abuse or neglect. The first objective is to keep children safe in their own home. If the children cannot remain safely in the home, children may be placed in the home of a relative or an agency foster care home, while services are provided to the parent with the goal of reunifying the family.

The two Family Services units each have four caseworkers. The units are assigned to specific school districts in order to enhance relationships with community schools and local services.

Services are provided to families either on a voluntary basis through court involvement. The caseworkers work with families who may be experiencing a number of concerns including homelessness, drug or alcohol abuse, mental illness, domestic violence, or family sexual abuse that interfere with the ability to keep children safe. Caseworkers provide case management; transportation; information and referral; as well as emergency assistance to families to help alleviate the safety issues to children. Caseworkers work jointly with parents to develop a plan to address safety concerns.

If children cannot safely remain with their parents, the children are placed either with a relative or in a licensed foster home. Caseworkers are responsible to ensure that the children's needs are met while working with the parents with a goal of safely returning children home to their parents. For children not residing with their parents, activities around the visitation are important to maintain a close relationship between parent and child as well as enhancing parenting skills.

Within the Family Services units are two specialized positions, a POSITRACT caseworker and a transitional caseworker. The POSITRACT caseworker provides diversion services to youth involved with the juvenile justice system. This position is a joint partnership with the agency and the Athens County Juvenile Court. The transitional caseworker provides individualized services to youth age 16 and older that are in agency custody and need specialized services to transition from the agency. These teens need the guidance and mentoring of the transitional caseworker, who will help them prepare for adult independence.

The two Family Services units work diligently to keep children safe. A success is maintaining children safely with their parents.

Laura Somers


Laura Somers
Family Services Supervisor

A vision for the agency's future

At the end of June, Athens County Children Services rolled out its new Strategic Plan to the agency and the community at large. The strategic plan is a culmination of two months of planning by agency staff and key stakeholders to determine the direction in which our agency should move in the future.

Summertime Parenting Tips:
Keeping kids fit this summer!

Girl jumping into pool1.Budget screen time.
Scree
n time includes TV time, computer time, and video games-any form of entertainment that involves staring at a screen.
3. Get other
families on your block on board.
Join forces with other parents and organize a joint activity so you can motivate everyone's kids to get moving together. It's hard to encourage your own kids to be active if there's no on
e for them to play with.
4. Be prepared to walk the talk as a parent.

Kids pay attention to what you do more than what you see. If all they see is you sitting on the couch, they won't be as motivated to get off the couch themselves.
5. Reserve the hour after dinner for active play.

Leave the dishes in the sink and use that h
our after dinner to enjoy some active outdoor playtime with your kids. Go for a bike ride as a family. Play a game of "eye spy" as you walk around the block.


(Source: http://www.squidoo.com/summerparenting)

Annual Report 2009
 
We are proud to release our 2009 Annual Report to the Community. In the report, we highlight the accomplishments and challenges faced by the agency in 2009. You can read the annual report by clicking here.
Renewal of Children Services
Levy this November

The Athens community has support this agency for over one hundred years. Currently the agency receives over 50% of its funds from two local tax levies. On November 2, 2010, Athens County Children Services will again be asking for support for the community for a renewal of the 2-mill tax levy which was passed by the voters in 2000.

A levy renewal means no increase in taxes, rather a continuation of the tax rate that was approved in 2000.

The continued support of this levy is critical to maintain services for the protection of children. The Friends of Children Services is organizing a levy campaign to inform the community about the need for this levy.

If you would like additional information, please contact me at 740-592-3061.

Andrea Reik, Executive Director



Andrea Reik
Executive Director
Upcoming Events

July 17
12 pm to 6 pm
Kids Games @ Boogie on the Bricks


August 11
12 pm - 3 pm
Kids Day @ Athens County Fair

August 12
9 am - 12 pm
Lace Up For Kids Distribution Day

 
Contact Information
 
Sherri Oliver
Editor/Public Relations and Community Events Coordinator
Athens County Children Services
 
Please send any feedback, questions, or comments to Sherri Oliver at olives@odjfs.state.oh.us
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Our Mission

Protecting Children
Strengthening Families
Securing Futures
Quick Links

Contact Us

If you suspect child abuse or neglect, please call:

740-592-3061
(M-F, 8:00am - 4:30pm)
 
1-877-477-0772
(After-hours, weekends, holidays)
 
If you would like more information on foster care and adoption, please call:
 
740-592-3061
(M-F, 8:00am - 4:30pm)
Children Waiting
Josh
January 1993

Josh

Josh is an inquisitive young man that enjoys activities that require him to think, such as playing chess or reading science fiction novels. He also enjoys drawing, writing, and cooking. Josh is very likeable and can be very sweet and respectful. He has a strong desire to achieve positive goals for himself and has a lot of insight into what he will need to be successful.

Although Josh has an IEP at school, don't be fooled! He is an incredibly intelligent young man who is beginning to work through a very painful past. Josh has a positive and healthy relationship with his paternal grandparents who adopted his father. His grandparents are very supportive of Josh having an adoptive family and want to see him have a good life.

Josh is a pleasant, sociable teen that would love to be part of a forever family. He desires a family that is loving, consistent, understanding, straightforward, and has a good sense of humor. Josh prefers a family with a mom. Josh is in the permanent custody of Athens County Children Services and is legally available for adoption. Subsidies are available.

For more information on this Josh, please visit our website.

Adoption News
We are happy to report that five adoptions were finalized in June. The children ranged in age from 3 to 16. So far this year, nine adoptions have been finalized!
Lace Up for Kids
As school starts in mid-August, hundreds of children in Athens County will need new shoes. Are you able to help?

You can drop off a new pair of tennis shoes to any Athens Wendy's location, Athens County Children Services, or Power 105. Monetary donations are also accepted and very much appreciated!

For more information on how to help with Lace Up For Kids, please call ACCS at (740) 592-3061.
Congratulations!
Congratulations to Stephanie Blaine, who has accepted the position of Kinship Caseworker. This is a new position for the agency assigned to the Placement Unit. Stephanie will be develop a strong support system for our kinship families.

Dave Jackson is leaving after 11 years with ACCS. He is going to the Meigs County Board of Developmental Disabilities as the Adult Services Director. Best wishes, Dave!

Congrats to Danielle Fagen, Placement Services Caseworker, for being named Employee of the Quarter. Danielle is tireless when it comes to assisting families, and her hard work is appreciated by all!