Private Organization Accreditation

Consumer Credit Counseling Service of the Savannah Area's mission is to provide the best non-profit community service, dedicated to delivering professional and confidential counseling, debt management, housing counseling and consumer education to all segments of the community regardless of ability to pay.


Harry Hunter, MSW, MBA, Ph.D.

Volunteer Roles: Peer Reviewer; Team Leader

Peer Reviewer for the month of January 2013, Dr. Hunter has been volunteering for COA since 2005, conducting five site reviews.
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Individuals who participate in Pregnancy Support Services learn about parenthood, make informed decisions about their pregnancies, stay healthy, and pursue their educational and vocational goals.

CA-PS 9: Promoting Positive Life Course Development

Expectant parents are linked to formal and informal supports and services that can increase self-sufficiency and life options.

NA The organization provides only Pregnancy Options Counselling or Birth Options Counselling.

Rating Indicators
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice standards.
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards; e.g.,
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted, however, these do not significantly impact service quality; or
  • Procedures need strengthening; or
  • With few exceptions procedures are understood by staff and are being used; or
  • For the most part, established timeframes are met; or
  • Proper documentation is the norm and any issues with individual staff members are being addressed through performance evaluations (CA-HR 6.02) and training (CA-TS 2.03); or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • Procedures and/or case record documentation need significant strengthening; or
  • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Timeframes are often missed; or
  • A number of client records are missing important information  or
  • Client participation is inconsistent; or
  • One of the Fundamental Practice Standards received a rating of 3 or 4.
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards; e.g.,
  • No written procedures, or procedures are clearly inadequate or not being used; or
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing; or  
  • Two or more Fundamental Practice Standards received a rating of 3 or 4.

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
    • A description of services
    • Procedures for linking individuals to services and providing ongoing monitoring and follow-up
No On-Site Evidence
    • Interview:
      1. Program director
      2. Relevant personnel
      3. Individuals served
    • Review case records

  • CA-PS 9.01

    To promote life options and economic self-sufficiency, expectant parents are helped to locate and enrol in educational or vocational programs that are appropriate to their needs, interests, and abilities.

    Research Note: Research indicates that women who become mothers during adolescence are more likely to be educationally and economically disadvantaged than women who delay childbearing. Although it was long assumed that this was a result of teen pregnancy, recent literature emphasises that many girls who become adolescent mothers are also disadvantaged beforehand, and, as referenced in the Research Note to CA-PS 7.04, suggests that many may become mothers as teens because they see their life options as limited. Nevertheless, although the economic consequences of early childbearing may have been overstated, some research controlling for background characteristics indicates that teen mothers are more likely to drop out of high school and experience greater poverty. Regardless of causality, the fact that young mothers tend to have needs in this area points to the importance of recognizing when they may need assistance promoting their educational and economic achievement.

  • CA-PS 9.02

    Expectant parents are helped to find new living arrangements when current living arrangements are not suitable.

    Interpretation: Expectant parents should have suitable housing both during and after the pregnancy. Appropriate arrangements can include living: (1) independently, (2) with family members, including the extended family, (3) in foster homes, (4) in group homes, or (5) in residential care.

  • FP
    CA-PS 9.03

    Expectant parents are helped to access other community services needed to support positive life course development, including, as appropriate:

    1. child care;
    2. transportation services;
    3. financial assistance;
    4. legal services; and
    5. domestic violence, sexual abuse, or sexual assault services.

    Research Note: Some research suggests that a large proportion of young women who become adolescent mothers have been victims of sexual abuse and points to the importance of recognizing when individuals may need specialized therapeutic services.

  • CA-PS 9.04

    Expectant parents receive social and emotional support directly from the service provider and are helped to develop and expand their informal support networks by:

    1. maintaining and strengthening their relationships with family members and the birth father, as appropriate; and
    2. building connections with friends, neighbours, and other community members.

  • CA-PS 9.05

    After delivery, parents without an alternative are helped to place their children in temporary foster care if they need time to establish homes or consider other plans for their children and themselves.

    NA The organization does not assist parents in placing their children in temporary foster care.

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