WHO IS ACCREDITED?

Private Organization Accreditation

Family Services of Southeast Texas strengthens families through accessible, affordable counseling services and education for issues affecting family life, mental health and employment.  We also provide comprehensive domestic violence shelter and support services.
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VOLUNTEER TESTIMONIAL

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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Purpose

Shelter Services meet the basic needs of individuals and families who are homeless or in transition, support family stabilization or independent living, and facilitate access to services and permanent housing. 

SH 9: Supportive Services

An array of supportive services are provided, directly or by referral, that help service recipients obtain housing and plan for reintegration into community life.

Interpretation: Programs that provide some or all supportive services listed in SH 9 through collaborative arrangements with other service providers need to show evidence of coordination with and monitoring of services received from collaborating organizations. 

NA The organization does not provide enhanced emergency shelters, transitional housing, or shelters for runaway and homeless children and youth, children and youth in foster care, or unaccompanied children without legal status.

Rating Indicators
1
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.
2
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 (HR 6.02) and training (TS 2.03); or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
3
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.
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
    • A description of services and support for expectant and parenting service recipients
    • Educational curricula for expectant and parenting service recipients
    • Procedures outlining how to make appropriate referrals
    • Written agreements with collaborating organizations
    • Documentation in case records for referrals made in response to identified service needs
    • Evidence of coordination with and monitoring of services received from collaborating organizations
    • Interview:
      1. Program director
      2. Relevant personnel
      3. Individuals or families served
    • Review case records

  • SH 9.01

    The program provides case management and other services that are tailored to the needs and preferences of individual service recipients.

    Interpretation: One of the most important aspects of care for victims of human trafficking and other forms of trauma is to be able to develop a consistent, trusting relationship with one staff person who serves as the central coordinator for the full myriad of needed services.


  • SH 9.02

    Housing support includes:

    1. assistance obtaining a safe, stable living environment, 
    2. including housing search support;
    3. assistance applying for rental subsidies or other financial aid programs;
    4. information about available community housing options;
    5. education on tenant rights and responsibilities; and
    6. advocacy for safe, affordable, appropriate housing.

    Research Note: The large-scale Family Options Study, which compared different interventions for families experiencing homelessness, found that permanent housing subsidies were the most beneficial compared to other program models. Families receiving priority access to such subsidies saw greater improvements in housing stability, adult and child well-being, and food security during the three-year follow-up period.

    NA The service population is limited to children and youth for whom living independently is not an alternative.


  • SH 9.03

    Skills training that promotes independence, and/or housing stability, includes:

    1. activities of daily living;
    2. household management;
    3. budgeting and money management;
    4. credit and debt counseling;
    5. the use of community resources;
    6. information about mainstream benefits; and
    7. interpersonal communication.

    NA The service population is limited to children and youth for whom living independently is not an alternative.


  • FP
    SH 9.04

    Health services include, as needed:

    1. routine medical and dental care;
    2. clinical services, including substance use and mental health services;
    3. medication management and/or monitoring;
    4. age or developmentally appropriate information, including pregnancy prevention, family planning, safe and healthy relationships, and prevention of HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases; and
    5. harm reduction.

    Interpretation: When an organization does not provide linkages to family planning services because doing so is counter to its mission or beliefs, the organization should disclose this fact to service recipients and provide individuals with a list of other community providers that offer pregnancy support and education services.

    Interpretation: Medical and dental assessments for children and youth should be conducted in accordance with well-child guidelines. See also, RPM 3, Medication Control and Administration.

    Interpretation: Individuals recovering from an illness or injury should be connected with medical respite care services, if available. Such programs provide a safe environment for individuals experiencing homelessness whose medical conditions do not warrant continued hospitalization, but where staying on the street or in a shelter would make recovery more difficult or impossible.

    Interpretation: Transgender service recipients may need assistance accessing specialized medical services related to sex reassignment surgery and/or hormone therapy.

    Interpretation: Harm reduction is a public health strategy that aims to prevent behaviors that can have negative outcomes and/or reduce the negative outcomes associated with that behavior. The interventions and goals used will vary depending on the behavior that is targeted and the population, for example preventing pregnancy among youth or reducing harm from continued substance use among adults.

    Research Note: Trafficking victims commonly suffer from multiple physical and psychological health issues as a result of inhumane living conditions, isolation, poor sanitation and hygiene, malnutrition, physical and emotional abuse from their traffickers, dangerous working situations, alcohol and other drug use, and overall lack of health care. 

    Research Note: Youth experiencing homelessness face multiple barriers to accessing physical and mental health care, including distrust in adults and institutional settings, no health insurance, lack of transportation, limited knowledge of available services, and lack of culturally competent care that is safe and friendly for youth who identify as LGBTQ.  


  • SH 9.05

    Pregnant service recipients are provided or linked with specialized services that include, as appropriate:

    1. pregnancy counseling;
    2. prenatal health care;
    3. genetic risk identification and counseling services;
    4. fetal alcohol syndrome screening;
    5. labor and delivery services;
    6. postpartum care;
    7. mental health care;
    8. pediatric health care, including well-baby visits and immunizations;
    9. peer counseling services; and
    10. children’s health insurance programs.

    Interpretation: Regarding element (g), expectant mothers should be screened for depression, informed about prenatal and postpartum depression, and connected to available support and treatment services.
     

    Interpretation: Young service recipients may need more intensive services that are developmentally appropriate for adolescence and early adulthood. 

    Research Note: Parenting youth tend to experience higher rates of mental health issues, such as prenatal and postpartum depression, substance use, and post-traumatic stress disorder, as a result of the difficulties of balancing the stressors and developmental tasks of adolescence with the challenges of parenthood.

    NA The organization does not serve pregnant service recipients.


  • SH 9.06

    Pregnant and parenting service recipients are helped to develop skills and knowledge related to:

    1. basic caregiving routines;
    2. child growth and development;
    3. meeting children’s social, emotional, and physical health needs;
    4. environmental safety and injury prevention;
    5. parent-child interactions and bonding;
    6. age-appropriate behavioral expectations and appropriate discipline; 
    7. family planning; and 
    8. establishing a functioning support network of family members or caring adults. 

    Interpretation: When an organization does not provide linkages to family planning services because doing so is counter to its mission or beliefs, the organization should disclose this fact to service recipients and provide individuals with a list of other community providers that offer pregnancy support and education services.

    NA The organization does not serve pregnant or parenting service recipients.


  • SH 9.07

    Support services include, as needed:

    1. transportation;
    2. legal assistance;
    3. case advocacy;
    4. mainstream benefits enrollment;
    5. help with basic literacy;
    6. help with basic computer literacy;
    7. educational services, including G.E.D. preparation;
    8. parent education and family support; 
    9. child care; and
    10. social, cultural, recreational and religious/spiritual activities. 

  • SH 9.08

    Employment and vocational supports include helping individuals;

    1. develop the habits, skills, and self-awareness essential to employability;
    2. write resumes, complete job applications, and prepare for interviews; 
    3. find and access local employment resources and placement options, including on-the-job training;
    4. secure childcare while attending interviews; and
    5. travel to interviews and places of employment.

    NA The organization only serves youth under 16 years of age.

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