Human Services Earns 29 NACo Achievement Awards

Human Services Earns 29 NACo Achievement Awards

San Bernardino County Human Services departments were recognized with Achievement Awards from the National Association of Counties. NACo’s Achievement Awards Program is an awards program that seeks to recognize innovative county government programs. Human Services programs earned 29 awards in the 2020 Awards program year. Congratulations to all the departments and staff whose programs have been recognized.
Below is a complete list of Human Services’ winners:
DEPARTMENT OF AGING AND ADULT SERVICES
Safe Zone Program
The Safe Zone program certifies Safe Zone allies trained to provide a safe, confidential and non-judgmental space in which members of the LGBT community may discuss issues related to programs and services available to them and other members of the public.
Successful Implementation Techniques for FLSA in the IHSS Program
These are techniques to successfully apply the regulations surrounding the Fair Labor and Standards Act (FLSA) to the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program. The techniques are Staff Education, Collaboration and Provider Education. These techniques were employed to identify goals and objectives, produce a timeline of deliverables, establish a communication plan to ensure IHSS staff, recipients and providers received information pertaining to FLSA implementation, develop risk management plans, and identify and resolve implement between action issues.
In-Home Supportive Services/Transitional Assistance: Collaboration for Customer Service and Staff Development
This is a partnership with TAD for Eligibility Workers to participate in a job-shadowing program to learn firsthand what IHSS Social Workers do on a daily basis. Consequently, participating EWs improve their understanding of the IHSS program to better serve their customers and learn about social work and career prospects in that field.
DEPARTMENT OF BEHAVIORAL HEALTH
Call for Art
This is a campaign that promotes civic engagement and creatively rallies individuals with mental illness, behavioral health staff, and the community around art and mental health awareness while simultaneously removing labels, reducing stigma, building alliances and promoting connection.
InnROADS
The Innovative Remote Onsite Assistance Delivery (InnROADs) project seeks to effect system-wide transformative change by utilizing lessons learned from previous innovation projects to craft a modified model of engagement for those individuals who are experiencing homelessness in the County’s rural and unincorporated communities. The focus of the project is to create an intensive, field-based engagement model that supports multi-disciplinary/multi-agency teams that meet, engage, and provide treatment to youth, adults, and families experiencing homelessness where they live and are comfortable within homeless communities.
Listen-Empathize-Agree-Partner Implementation
The program illustrates how people do not establish or grow relationships with mentally ill individuals based on the strength of an opinion or belief. Rather, relationships are grown and made stronger because of the open communication and mutual understanding of the people in the relationship. LEAP is for any relationship providing the tools needed to persuade someone in denial about mental illness to accept treatment and services.
Placement After Stabilization (PAS) Program
This is a collaborative program to provide effective discharge planning for clients to help ensure they are connected with the most appropriate, least restrictive level of care to attain and maintain optimum wellness after experiencing a mental health crisis. This organized delivery of discharge planning services significantly contributes to the successful transition of clients out of the crisis level of care and into the next stage of their recovery.
Leadership Development Program
This is a redesign of DBH’s Leadership Development Program in order to maintain a first-class workforce and encourage professional development. New curriculum covers such topics as communication, team building, goal setting, project management, and professional growth, and more. The program also includes special sessions to provide participants with experiential learning opportunities outside the classroom, a group collaboration project, and a mentoring component that allows them to learn from and connect with current DBH leaders.
CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES
Continuous Quality Improvement Process in Child Welfare
This is an implementation of a practical process for engaging staff to elicit, encourage and replicate innovative solutions to identifiable problems using the principles of Continuous Quality Improvement. Monthly meetings are held that include all levels of staff focusing on a particular issue and efforts to resolve ongoing problems. This process has been used to inform policy changes related to Out-of-Home (OOH) care, Child and Family Team Meetings, Social Worker contacts, and Implementation of Structured Decision Making and new approaches to maltreatment in OOH care.
Open Case Investigations (OCI) Unit
This was established specifically to investigate reports of suspected child maltreatment of any child in out-of-home placement. The OCI unit investigates referrals on open cases including those involving children placed in the homes of relatives or Non-Related Extended Family Members and new referrals on open cases such as Family Maintenance cases.
Integration of Presumptive Transfer through Interagency Collaboration
This collaboration established a system of inter-agency collaboration in July 2017 to successfully implement Presumptive Transfer – a measure under Assembly Bill 1299, which requires County Mental Health Plans to provide and pay for Specialty Mental Health Services for most of the foster children placed in their counties.
Department Diversity Program
This program enhanced CFS’s capacity to build a workforce that represents the community the Department serves. The program is aimed at promoting diversity and inclusion, enhancing the Department’s cultural competence. These objectives are pursued through continuous review of recruitment and retention efforts. The committee provides recommendations to attract, develop and motivate a talented and diverse workforce.
DEPARTMENT OF CHILD SUPPORT SERVICES
Personnel Management, Employment and Training
This is a highly successful hiring event that required the collaboration of multiple departments within the County. The DCSS leadership team with the support of the County Human Resources Department, Human Services Personnel Unit and County Human Resources Benefits Division developed the 2019-20 Hiring Hall, with the intent of screening numerous job applicants in the most effective and efficient manner. This proactive approach to the hiring process accommodated 183 candidates and resulted in 90 job offers.
DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH
DPH Customer Satisfaction Mechanism: Collecting, Analyzing, and Responding to Customer Feedback
This is a standardized Customer Satisfaction Survey to meet the needs of all DPH programs to collect, analyze, and respond to customer feedback.
DPH Stay Interview Program
This is a strategy developed to increase employee retention through improving an employee’s workplace environment and culture. One-on-one conversations with employees by supervision staff utilizing the Stay Interview Guide, Stay Plan and Stay Interview Training tools.
DPH Lunch and Learn Event
This is a program with a series of monthly presentations from department leadership and guest speakers to provide education to all staff about career development, public health sciences, and diversity topics. Employees can access the presentation in three ways: attend the event in person, live-stream the event via the Zoom Application, or watch a recording of the event via YouTube.
GIS – PSPS
Utilizing the Geographic Information System (GIS), Environmental Health Services developed a simple, effective program that provides staff with the necessary information to quickly identify, contact, and consult with entities whose power has been shut off by SCE under the Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) program to ensure public health safety.
Customer Service Expansion
This is an expanded DPH Environmental Health Services communication platform to incorporate text messaging. Customers are able to text EHS at the current customer service phone number and connect with a live customer service agent.
Remote Inspections Program
remote inspections by way of free commonly used mobile video chat applications. With the use of existing staff and technology, Environmental Health Services has been able to successfully conduct timely quality vehicle inspections for its operators located in remote areas while also reducing the amount of drive time needed to get to an inspection site.
Warehouse Marketplace, Fiscal Management
A warehouse of DPH surplus items are logged, categorized, inventoried, and uploaded to SharePoint with a photo and description for all public health employees to shop with no cost to obtain the surplus item.
Food Rescue Anti-Hunger Coalition
This is a coalition that aims to create a more just and equitable food system through cooperation and collaboration across sectors and counties. Its goal is to fight hunger, reduce food waste through food recovery by breaking down silos among agencies, and connecting the dots from food surplus to food insecurity. Members come together to share resources, to partner and to drive change.
Improving Developmental Screening Rates in San Bernardino County
This is a developmental screening by program nurses to identify problems or delays during regular well-child visits.
Too Good to Waste
This is an Environmental Health Services cohort that participated in the California Leadership Academy for the Public’s Health (CaLAPH) to address social determinants of health. With the guidance and support of CaLAPH, the DPH-EHS team, known as Too Good to Waste, sought to address food insecurity and food waste issues in hopes to build a more robust, accessible, and equitable food system for all SBC residents. Two assessment tools were developed and piloted in the high desert region to identify challenges charitable feeding organizations and food establishments were facing to provide valuable insight on food insecurity in that region. To continue and expand these efforts countywide, Too Good to Waste integrated these tools in the daily services provided by DPH EHS. Community partners can use this information to help extend the food recovery/waste prevention efforts more broadly and comprehensively throughout SBC.
PRESCHOOL SERVICES DEPARTMENT
The Home Visiting Program
This is a program with the objective to provide parenting education and community resource information in the home. The Home Visiting Program supports positive health, development and well-being outcomes for the family primarily in the home and offers group socializations for the families. Services included community referrals, health and safety items (such as first aid kits), self-sufficiency items (such as Chrome Books) and support.
TRANSITIONAL ASSISTANCE DEPARTMENT
Getting Ahead
This is a facilitated learning experience designed for San Bernardino County Subsidized Employment Program (known as the Work Experience [WEX] program) participants. In partnership with the County Performance Education & Resource Centers, this provides TAD WEX participants with an understanding of the causes and impacts of poverty, assistance with identifying and seeking needed resources, and the ability to discover new tools for solving problems. Participants, known as investigators, use life experiences as the context for learning about poverty and developing problem-solving skills to help build productive futures.
Housing Disability and Advocacy Program (HDAP)
TAD in partnership with the Community Development and Housing Agency, implemented the Housing and Disability Advocacy Program (HDAP) in 2018, which works to identify and serve disabled homeless individuals by providing immediate bridge and permanent housing, case management and legal assistance/representation for disability-income program applications. HDAP consist of outreach, case management, disability advocacy, and housing assistance.
Proactive Texting Outreach
TAD offers proactive text messaging as a measure to avoid benefit disruption on California Work Opportunities and Responsibilities to Kids (CalWORKs) (cash aid) and/or CalFresh (California’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program [SNAP]) cases. Proactive texting is an individualized texting approach, aimed to decrease preventable case discontinuances and case churn.
Sanction Reengagement Program
TAD implemented a Welfare-to-Work (WTW) Sanction Reengagement program in 2019 to assist sanctioned and removed-from-aid persons to return to aid, thereby increasing family stability and improving child well-being. Program objectives include reduction of WTW sanctioned individuals, incentives to promote sanction cures, and customer engagement in WTW after completion of sanction cure.
Supervised Field Experience (SFE)
In partnership with the County Performance, Education & Resource Centers, TAD redesigned the Eligibility Worker and Employment Services Specialist onboarding classes and implemented a SFE component for new trainees. SFE provides structured on-the-job training every Friday for the length of the onboarding class.
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