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Annual Report

Annual Report

Waushara County Human Services’ 2017 Annual Report

 

  • In 2017, Waushara County Human Services received an average of 185 applications each month to determine eligibility for state and federal benefits such as Medical Assistance, Food Share and Child Care assistance (increase of 8% from 2016).  Approximately 2,617 Waushara County households received monthly benefits. In May of 2018, there were 4,494 Waushara County recipients of benefits, comprised of 2,591 adults and 1,903 children. 
  • In 2017, Waushara County Department of Human Services processed 190 applications for Emergency Assistance.  86 individuals were assisted with primarily rent or utility assistance utilizing Salvation Army and United Way funds.
  • Waushara County Human Services provided 533 consumers Mental Health counseling in 2017 (6 ½ % increase from 2016), for a total of 3663 total contacts.     
  • 295 clients received individual and/or group counseling for Alcohol & Other Drug Abuse in 2017.   9 individuals were placed in Inpatient Treatment by Waushara County Human Services for Alcohol or other Drug Abuse (50% increase from 2016).   
  • Waushara County’s Hybrid Treatment Court (i.e. “Drug Court”) provided intensive treatment to 23 individuals with drug related or multiple Operating While Intoxicated offenses in order to improve their lives and prevent future relapses and illegal behavior.  This is a collaborative effort between Human Services, Waushara County Sheriff’s Department, Circuit Court, District Attorney’s Office, Public Defender’s Office, and Probation and Parole.
  • Human Services responded to 445 calls regarding Waushara County residents experiencing personal crises in 2017 (4% increase from 2016), including 32 mental health emergency detentions, 16 voluntary hospitalizations, 56 afterhours youth delinquency responses, and 25 afterhours child protection services responses.  In collaboration with the Sheriff’s Department, Human Services’ crisis team also provided 2, nine-week classes to Waushara County jail inmates. 
  • Human Services kept Waushara County children safe by responding to 490 reports of child maltreatment in 2017, all of which received an offer of services regardless of the allegation.  Reports included allegations of physical abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, emotional damage, and unborn child abuse. 
  • 25 children were placed/maintained in out-of-home care in 2017 (22% reduction from 2016).   Of these 25 children:
    • 11 were safely reunified with their parents
    •  1 found permanency following a termination of parental rights (TPR) and the child was living with the adoptive parents at the end of 2017
    •  1 found permanency following TPR and adoption in January 2018
    •  4 found permanency though guardianship with relatives
    •  1 child was working towards permanency through reunification which did occur in April 2018
    • 1 child remains in care while the department works towards permanency either through reunification or TPR and adoption with a relative
    • 2 children remained in a treatment level foster homes; one is scheduled to return home by September 2018 and the other is working towards permanency with a relative
    • 1 child found permanency in transitioning to independent living at Job Corps
    • 1 child will age out of the foster care system and transition into Family Care
    • 1 child successfully remains in her Level 5 foster home
    • 1 child’s case was transferred to another county.      
  •  Human Services completed 117 Operating While Intoxicated assessments in 2017 and an Underage Drinking class for 30 youth who were ticketed.
  • Human Services staff assessed 166 adult protection services referrals in 2017 (i.e. abuse to vulnerable adults which includes elder abuse, financial exploitation, neglect/self-neglect, and sexual abuse).  This is a 41% increase from 2016.  
  •  Human Services provides ongoing case management, court assessments/reviews, and/or supportive services to approximately 93 vulnerable adults.  Some of these adults need to be placed in safe environments outside of their homes, which can be very costly to Waushara County if not covered by Family Care.  
  • Waushara County Department of Human Services’ Long Term Support Team provides Representative Payee Services for 24 individuals.  This function includes receipt of Social Security income to pay all bills and completion of required reporting.  In addition, through contracts with Care Wisconsin and Inclusa, they assist 12 individuals, who are participants in Family Care, in maintaining their independence within their communities.  In the last year, 10 individuals have been served by Human Services through the Alzheimer Caregiver Support Program.  1 Waushara County Department of Human Services staff works in the Aging and Disability Resource Center and provides options counseling for older adults and adults with physical and developmental disabilities.
  •  In 2017, approximately 65 children with disabilities/possible disabilities and their families were served by Human Services staff/contracted staff providing assessments, case management, wraparound teams, occupational/physical therapy, speech & language services, respite care, adaptive equipment, etc.
  •  Human Services’ staff worked to keep Waushara County safe while meeting the needs of youth and their families by processing 80 referrals regarding crimes committed by juveniles in 2017 (11% decrease from 2016).
  • Human Services provided Post-Reunification services to 3 families and In-Home Safety services to 6 families in 2017 (50% increase for both programs) at no cost to Waushara County.   Post-Reunification offers qualifying families support to maintain children in their homes following reunification.  In-Home Safety Services provides support to families to prevent removal of children.  Both of these programs help keep out-of-home placements down and offer opportunities to reimburse Waushara County for services already being provided.  
  • In 2017, 57 adults and children with mental health diagnoses and/or alcohol/drug abuse issues received such services as case management, medication management, mentoring and other programing to assist in their pursuit of recovery oriented goals (52 through the Comprehensive Community Services program, 2 through a grant and 3 through other Medical Assistance billing).  This is a 19% increase from 2016.    
  • In 2017, 39 adults with severe, persistent and disabling mental health issues were served by staff providing them with such services as symptom/medication management, independent living skills training and opportunities for positive social interactions.  This is an 11% increase from 2016.    
  •  Waushara County Department of Human Services recruits, licenses and maintains foster homes, currently overseeing 11 licensed foster homes and 2 respite homes. 
  • Human Services was recently awarded a grant to upgrade the camera equipment in the courthouse which is used to conduct forensic interviews of children for sexual and other abuse/neglect child protection services cases.  By offering the forensic interviews locally, children are not having to travel outside of their community to Child Advocacy Centers to discuss potentially traumatic experiences. 
  • Human Services collaborates with the State of Wisconsin, private funders/agencies, other county agencies and many regional counties to provide the best possible services at a minimum expense to Waushara County taxpayers.  Waushara County Human Services’ collaborations provide Waushara County residents with free/low cost services such as parenting classes, in home parenting programs, and case management services.
  • Waushara County Department of Human Services coordinates prevention events such as the Back to School Bash and Blue Ribbon Kids Day.  In addition, Human Services employees co-chair Waushara County Prevention, Inc. in efforts to expand prevention activities in Waushara County.  Recent Youth Risk Behavior Surveys done in the 3 main high schools serving Waushara County kids shows our prevention efforts may be having a positive impact, as the percentage of students who had 5 or more drinks of alcohol in a row, within a couple hours, on at least 1 day in the 30 days before the survey was 11.3% (compared to the Statewide result of 16.4%), the percentage of high school students who used marijuana 1 or more times in the past 30 days was 11% (compared to 16% Statewide), and the percentage of students who ever took a prescription pain pill without a Doctor’s prescription or differently than how they were told to take it was 6.4% (compared to the Statewide result of 11.2%).  Clearly there is still work to be done, but hopefully we are headed in the right direction. 
  • Waushara County Department of Human Services Board Chair, Dennis Wedde, received the distinguishing honor of receiving the Woodrow “Woody” Smith Award in front of hundreds of attendees at the 2018 Wisconsin County Human Services Association (WCHSA) Spring Conference at Chula Vista Resort in Wisconsin Dells.   Mr. Wedde received this award for his 18+ years of service and ongoing dedication to the mission of Human Services.   His consistent pursuit of becoming more and more involved with the well-being of our consumers is evident.   He has been the Chair for the Central Wisconsin Health Partnership’s regional Comprehensive Community Services (CCS) committee, consisting of 6 counties and several providers and consumers, since its inception in 2014.   He consistently attends Waushara County’s Behavioral Health and CCS Advisory committee meetings, in which his wife Darlene is a member.   Dennis attends and participates in several WCHSA meetings.  He is a strong supporter of Human Services and helping us be the best we can be locally, regionally, and Statewide.