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Annual Report Rowan County Department of Social Services. Fiscal Year 2011 July 1, 2010 – June 30, 2011.

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annual report rowan county department of social services

Annual ReportRowan County Department of Social Services

Fiscal Year 2011

July 1, 2010 – June 30, 2011

director s statement

In today’s fragile economic climate, we see our family members, our friends, and our neighbors facing the worst of times. Businesses are downsizing and closing, leaving many Rowan County citizens out of work and without adequate resources to take care of their basic need for food, clothing, and shelter. In life’s most difficult times, some people do not have a family, a church, or a circle of friends to turn to for support. For these people, the poor economy can have very serious and long-lasting affects and can lead to homelessness, illness, addictions, abuse, neglect, and domestic violence.


director s statement3

In times such as these, it is more important than ever to have community resources to help hold people up until times get better. Rowan County Department of Social Services is committed to being part of a network of community organizations that help people overcome life’s challenges in the hardest of times. In fact, almost half the households in Rowan County are being helped through Medicaid, Food Assistance, and Work First benefits. These programs are helping people to receive needed medical care, to obtain food for their children, and to pay their rent and utility bills.


director s statement4


In addition to financial help, DSS provides services to those in need. Many of our disabled residents and those who are aged are getting good care in an adult day program or care in assisted living facilities, if their needs warrant such care.

Single parents are getting help for their children through child support services, offered for free or for a very small cost. Parents who are working or who are full-time students may qualify for help with day care costs, giving them the assurance that their children are well cared for while parents work to earning a living.

director s statement5

Even with financial assistance and social services to fill the gaps, some parents are unable to provide a safe and nurturing home for their children. Sometimes, these children are victims of abuse and neglect, and they become DSS foster children. With the birth parents, foster parents, and DSS working in partnership, most foster children return home when it is safe for them to do so.


director s statement6

I am grateful for our community partners, our Board of Directors, and our 200 employees for the service they provide to Rowan County residents. Working together is the key to addressing the community’s urgent and compelling needs. After you have reviewed the Rowan County DSS Annual Report, please do not hesitate to call on us for more information. Located at 1813 East Innes Street in Salisbury, next door to the Rowan County Health Department, DSS is open Monday through Friday, from 7:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. We are honored to serve you.

Sandra M. Wilkes, Director

Rowan County Department of Social Services


total impact on rowan county citizens and economy in fy 2011

Total Impact on Rowan County Citizens and Economy in FY 2011

$223,755,881 in benefits and services impacted our County’s economy in FY2010-2011. The vast majority is Federal and State funding, with the total County share for these benefits $2,531,460 (1.1%).

26,000 households and 48,249 individuals in Rowan County received assistance in FY 2011 in Medicaid, Food and Nutrition, and/or Work First Benefits. This means 49% of Rowan County households received one or more of these basic kinds of assistance last year.

demographic information

Demographic Information

2010 census shows population of Rowan County was 138,428. 2009 estimated number of households was 53,249.

16.7% of our citizens were below the poverty rate in 2009

Median household income in 2010 was $46,292

Unemployment Rate was 11.5% for June 2011

From Charlotte Regional Partnership, US Census Bureau, and Employment Security Commission


Assistance Issued in FY2011 (3 of 3)

Food and Nutrition


6 year comparison13

6-year Comparison

  • 32% Increase in 5 years
economic services division

Pat Spears, Program Administrator


Medicaid for Families and Children

Medicaid for Adults

Medicaid Transportation

Special Assistance

Food and Nutrition Services

FNS Employment and Training

Low Income Energy Assistance

Crisis Intervention

Share the Warmth


medicaid program

Medicaid Program

Medicaid is a health insurance program for low-income individuals and families who cannot afford health care costs. Medicaid serves low-income parents, children, seniors, and people with disabilities. 23,725 individuals were authorized for Medicaid (17% of Rowan County population) as of June 2011; average value of medical services received was $6,872 per person for the year.

Expenditures are shown by type of service received, individual recipient categories, and type of providers in Rowan County, based on reports from the Division of Medical Assistance.


Medicaid Services Provided (3 of 3)

Mental Health HMO Premiums

Nursing Home





Rowan County Provider Earnings (3 of 3)

Nursing Homes




Note: $31,172,113 HMO Premiums for Mental Health for Rowan citizens does not show in this chart because the provider, Piedmont Behavioral Health, is located in Cabarrus County.

medicaid transportation

Medicaid Transportation

This service is provided through a contract with Rowan Transit System

$661,872 was paid to vendors and family members to transport Medicaid-eligible clients for medical services

38,036 trips were provided in FY2011, serving an average of 265 recipients per month

special assistance programs

State-County Special Assistance for Adults (SA)provides Medicaid coverage and a cash supplement to help low-income individuals residing in adult care homes (such as rest homes) pay for their care. Adult care homes are unlike nursing homes in that medical care is not provided by home staff. Designated staff may administer medications and provide personal care services such as assistance with bathing, eating, and dressing.

Special Assistance Programs

special assistance programs28

Special Assistance In-Home is an alternative to placement in an Adult Care Home for individuals who are able to live at home safely with additional supportive services. Slots for this program are limited and persons determined eligible for SA In-Home receive Medicaid and a monthly financial payment based on need.

Special Assistance Programs

special assistance adult care home payments

Special Assistance(Adult Care Home Payments)

Payments for Disabled Adults in FY 2011 - $1,108,570

Payments for Elderly Adults in FY 2011 – $1,093,447

(Includes $51,923 for SA In-Home Care)

food and nutrition benefits

Food and Nutrition Benefits

Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) is a federal food assistance program that helps low-income families. Monthly allotments of FNS benefits are issued via Electronic Benefit Transfer cards (EBT cards). The purpose of Food and Nutrition Services is to end hunger and improve nutrition and health.

$35,946,840 was issued to an average of 10,671 Rowan County households per month in FY 2011 (20% of households in county).

$170,964.34 was dispensed in USDA surplus commodities.

food and nutrition services employment training

Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) unit members ages 18 through 59 may volunteer to participate in an E&T Program. The local Employment Security Commission administers the program. FNS recipients who volunteer for the program are referred to ESC. The E&C Coordinator assesses the recipient’s needs and develops a plan for training activities or for job search activities based on the recipient’s individual needs. Persons who participate in the program are reimbursed for participation expenses.

$2,670spent in SFY 2011

Food and Nutrition Services Employment & Training

low income energy assistance

Low Income Energy Assistance

The Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) is a Federally-funded program that provides for a one-time cash payment to help eligible families pay their heating bills.

$1,119,876 was issued in FY 2011

5,069 households received assistance (9.5% of county)

crisis intervention and share the warmth programs

Crisis Intervention and Share the Warmth Programs

The Crisis Intervention Program (CIP) is Federal funding which provides assistance to low-income households that are in a heating or cooling related emergency.

Share the Warmth is funded by Piedmont Natural Gas and its customers. These two programs are administered through a contract with Rowan Helping Ministries.

2,737households and 7,069 individuals were served in FY 2011 (5.1% of county population)

$672,283 was paid to 26 vendors

services support division

Nancy Brandt, Program Administrator


Adult Protective Services

Adult Day Care

In-Home Aide Services

Special Assistance In-Home

Adult Care Homes


Work First Benefits

Work First Employment Services

Work First Emergency Assistance

Child Support Enforcement

Child Day Care Subsidy


adult services

Adult Services support older and disabled adults and their families through a community-based system of opportunities, services, benefits, and protections.

Adult Services

Services administered through Rowan County DSS include protective services, case management, home management, in-home aide, adult day care, placement services, guardianship, and other services for elderly or disabled adults.

adult protective services

Protective Services Reports Received in FY2011 – 310

Abuse – 3

Self-Neglect – 70

Caretaker Neglect – 54

Exploitation of Assets – 12

Exploitation of Person – 3

Psychological Evaluations - 5

Screened Out (did not meet criteria in law) – 203

Preventive Outreach Referrals – 102

Incompetency Hearings - 24

Adult Protective Services

adult day care

Adult Day Care

Adult Day Care services are an organized program of services in a community group setting to support adults’ personal independence and to promote their social, physical, and emotional well-being. Additionally, we monitor adult day care centers in order to ensure program quality.

$67,348spent in SFY 2011

in home aide services

In-Home Aide Services are provided to assist families with attaining and maintaining self-sufficiency and improving quality of life for the elderly adult to stay in their homes as long as possible to avoid premature substitute care and unnecessary out-of-home placement. These services assist with home management tasks and personal care tasks for adults who cannot carry out the tasks essential to the activities of daily living.

$86,419spent in SFY 2011

In-Home Aide Services

personal care services

Personal Care Services provide for additional personal care assistance for Medicaid eligible residents in adult care homes. A resident must meet Medicaid criteria as a heavy care resident and require extensive or total assistance in ambulation/locomotion, toileting, and/or feeding. DSS staff provided case management for 134 recipients of personal care services in FY2011. The cost of the services provided by adult care home staff is included in our Medicaid expenditures.

Personal Care services

special assistance in home

The Special Assistance In-Home program provides an option for in-home care for older and disabled adults who are in need of placement in an adult care home, but who desire to live in a private living setting and can be maintained safely in that setting. A social worker develops a care plan based on client assessments and planning with the clients, family members, and others and determines how the Special Assistance In-Home payment is to be used to enable the client to live at home safely.

Special Assistance In-home

$ 51,923 spent in FY2011 to assist 20 clients

adult care home services

Adult Care Home SERVICES

Adult Services Social Workers provide licensing, monitoring, and case management services for Adult Care Homes (Assisted Living facilities).

17 Adult Care Home Providers in Rowan County served up to 729 residents in FY2011



Guardianship involves the provision of services to individuals who are declared incompetent by the court. DSS is given responsibility for the adult’s personal affairs, making important decisions regarding the individual’s personal welfare.

 The agency is Guardian of Person for 55 cases.

work first benefits and employment services

Work First Benefits and Employment Services

Provides services focusing on employment and self-sufficiency and monthly payments for families with children who meet income eligibility guidelines. The program promotes work, requires personal responsibility, and helps families get and keep a job. Work First Family Assistance benefits provide short-term services with families expected to work actively towards becoming self-sufficient. The program is built on the premise that all families have a responsibility to their families and community to work and provide for their children.

work first benefits and employment services44

Work First Benefits and Employment Services

$810,561 was issued in cash assistance payments in FY 2011

334 is the average number of households assisted each month (76% of these payments are for the child only)

$43,878 was paid to assist clients in finding and keeping employment

$16,639 was spent on contracted services with Family Crisis Council, who assisted 27 victims of domestic violence

work first emergency assistance

Work First Emergency Assistance

Emergency Assistance provides benefits to families with children to alleviate an emergency situation defined as an unexpected, immediate crisis that is not expected to re-occur if assistance is provided. Citizenship and residency requirements apply as well as income and resource limits. Examples of situations where services may be provided are families in immediate danger of eviction or foreclosure or where a utilities cut-off notice has been issued.

$23,630 was paid for emergencies to ensure that 62 families with children had shelter and utilities

child support enforcement

Child Support Enforcement works to ensure that both parents are responsible for the financial support of their children. Services are provided to the custodians of minor children, regardless of income level. County agents help locate non-custodial parents, establish paternity of the child, and petition the court to order child support payments and to enforce compliance.

Child Support Enforcement

child support enforcement47

Child Support Enforcement

$ 9,957,326 was collected on behalf of Rowan County children in FY 2011

An additional $281,079 was saved in medical costs, paid by absent parents or insurance rather than Medicaid

Paternity was established for 249 children

child day care subsidy

Child Day Care Subsidy

Day Care Subsidy provides for the care, protection, and developmental experiences of children for a portion of the day or night. Services may be provided to families who demonstrate a need based on North Carolina Division of Child Development policy. Eligibility requirements also include a residency requirement in the county of North Carolina where they apply, citizenship requirements, an age requirement of the child, and income eligibility. Each type of child care arrangement must be licensed or meet all applicable Division of Child Development requirements for the type of arrangement.

child day care subsidy49

$4,602,557 was issued in Fiscal Year 2011

  • An average of 1,150 children were served each month
  • 2,068 is the total number of children served in FY 2011
  • Approximately 85 child care providers in Rowan County received subsidy

Child Day Care Subsidy

children s services division

Tom Brewer, Program Administrator

Barbara Sharpe, Program Administrator for Children’s Protective Services


Children’s Protective Services (Intake, Investigations, In-Home Services)

Foster Care Licensing and Placement Services

LINKS Transitional Services

Adoption Services

Adoption Assistance Payments

One Church, One Child Program


children s protective services

The Child Protective Services program strives to ensure safe, permanent, nurturing families for children by protecting them from abuse and neglect while attempting to preserve the family unit.

Child Protective Services help prevent further harm to children from intentional physical or mental injury, sexual abuse, exploitation, or neglect by a person responsible for a child's health or welfare.

Child Protective Services also help protect children who have no parent, guardian, or custodian to provide care and supervision, or whose parents or guardians or custodian is unable to provide for the care or supervision and lacks an appropriate alternative child care arrangement.

Children’s Protective Services

child protection statistics

Reports Received in FY2011 – 2,827

Physical or Emotional Abuse – 89

Sexual Abuse – 105

Abuse and Neglect – 14

Neglect – 1,699

Dependency – 46

Screened Out (did not meet criteria in law) – 874

Second Report on Active Cases - 339

Child Protection Statistics

foster care placement services

Foster Care Placement Services

Foster Care is a temporary living arrangement for abused, neglected and dependent children who need a safe place to live when their parents or another relative cannot take care of them.  Often their parents face issues such as illness, alcohol and drug addictions, family violence or homelessness.  Length of stay in foster care varies from a few days to much longer.   The foster family, the Department of Social Services, and the birth family work together to return children to their own homes when it is safe for them to return.

foster care placement services54

Foster Care Placement Services

$2,364,717 spent in FY 2011:

$2,275,750 for room and board

$88,967 for clothing and miscellaneous needs

$1,819,158 paid to Rowan County providers; $545,559 out of county

249 children served in FY2011;

31 foster homes licensed and supervised by Rowan County DSS

links transitional services

Provides instructional services and financial assistance to prepare youth, who have been in foster care, for independent living. Foster care youth between the ages of 13-21 are eligible for assistance with expenses such as car insurance, furnishings for new living arrangements, employment expenses, educational expenses, and the like as they develop new skills for living outside of the foster care system.

$15,706spent in SFY 2011


adoption program

Adoption Program

Adoption is the legal and social process in which a child who is born to one set of parents becomes the child of another parent(s).  The adoptive parents then assume all legal rights, obligations, and responsibilities of parents to the child.

adoption program57

Adoption program

The purpose of the adoption program at DSS is to find permanence with a family who meets the special needs of our children.

The agency also completes home studies for step-parent, relative, and independent adoptions at the request of the Clerk of Court.

Adoption Assistance payments are available for certain qualified children who are adopted from DSS custody.

$1,534,373 was issued in FY 2011 in Cash Assistance and Vendor Payments

$29,111 more was reinvested in the program from incentives earned for success in the number of adoptions finalized.

230children were served in FY2011

13 children were adopted from DSS custody

14 step-parent/relative/independent adoptions were completed

dss legal services

DSS Legal Services

The DSS has two attorneys on staff and two paralegals who assist with preparation of court documents. Children’s Services Legal staff represent the agency in matters pertaining to child abuse, neglect, dependency, custody, termination of parental rights, and adoption. Support Services Legal staff represent the agency in Adult Protective Services, Guardianship, and Child Support Enforcement cases.

DSS Attorneys work with individuals and families who have an active case with DSS.

general assistance all divisions

General Assistance(All Divisions)

$11,127 in assistance provided for multiple needs not covered by other programs

104 individuals assisted

23 businesses or vendors paid

donated funds

Donated Funds

$85,730in contributions from the community used for the following purposes:

$72,237 - Christmas Happiness

$10,929 - One Church, One Child

$2,364 - Children’s Services

$200 - Food Pantry

one church one child

One Church, One Child

The Rowan County One Church One Child Program is a mission/outreach program between Rowan County Department of Social Services and local churches. Goals are:

Identifying and supporting families in congregations who are interested in becoming foster and/or adoptive parents.

Helping meet the needs of children and families that have an open or active case within Rowan County DSS Children's Services Division.  

Supporting foster parents and relatives who care for Rowan County's children in foster care.

Educating church members about the needs of Rowan County children and families who need support and assistance.

cost of administering benefits and providing services

Cost of Administering Benefits and Providing Services

The cost for administering $223.8 million in benefits and providing additional mandated services in FY2011 was $11,340,788, or 5.1% of total benefits issued.

County share of administrative costs was $4,127,512.

This cost includes the provision of services such as protective services for children and adults, as well as the cost of determining eligibility and issuing program benefits.


Administrative Costs by Program Area

Economic Services

1- Economic Services $4.2 million

2- Children’s Services $4.0 million

3- Child Support $1.7 million

4- Adult Services $699 thousand

5- Work First $386 thousand

6- Child Day Care $370 thousand

Children’s Services

Child Support

Adult Services

Work First

Child Day Care

leadership team and contact information

Leadership Team and Contact Information

Sandra Wilkes, Director Jane Johnson, Budget Analyst

704-216-8422 704-216-8346

Pat Spears, Program Administrator for Economic Services


Nancy Brandt, Program Administrator for Services Support


Tom Brewer, Program Administrator for Children’s Services


Barbara Sharpe, Program Administrator for Children’s Protective Services


Lillian Morgan, Chair, Social Services Board