What is the Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program?
The Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program is an initiative of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Jacksonville Housing Authority (JHA) implemented the FSS voluntary program in 1993. The purpose of the program is to assist Section 8 families to complete goals in education, job-training, employment, entrepreneurial and homeownership with emphasis on employment, credit readiness and free of cash assistance.
Program participant has five (5) years to achieve their goals. This timeline can be extended two (2) additional years, totaling seven (7) years. This allows families extra time to complete their measureable and reasonable goals. When all of the goals are completed, the FSS participant is considered a “successful graduate” of the FSS Program.
Eligibility to participate in the Program?
All families that are participating in the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Rental Assistance Program.
How do families apply for participation in the FSS Program?
What services does the FSS Program Provide?
The FSS participants will receive case management services from a Service Coordinator assisting the FSS Participants to develop their Individual Training and Service Plan (ITSP). This plan helps the participants to review their strengths as well as decide on their goals. Then, the FSS participant will sign the FSS Contract of Participation (COP). Signing of the COP states that the FSS Participant will make every possible effort to complete their goals.
The FSS Program hosts educational workshops called the “Family Self-Sufficiency University (FSSU).” These workshops are preparations to enhance the FSS participant’s quality of life and to help them gain valuable knowledge about varies community resources to help them achieve their goals.
The FSSU workshops are:
• Time Management and Budgeting
• Job Fair
• Homeownership Fair
• Back to School Event
• Financial Literacy
The FSS program in partnership with varies community organizations. Representative serve on the Program Coordinating Committee (PCC) in order to assure services are delivered.
Does the FSS Program offer financial support?
The FSS Program is a recipient of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) from the City of Jacksonville http://www.coj.net/. The grant funds assist with payment toward education, job-training and supportive services. In addition, the FSS participants are eligible for a FSS escrow account.
What is an FSS Escrow Savings Account?
After enrolled in the Family Self-Sufficiency Program and the families are working toward completion of their goals and the rent increases due to earned (working) income, a monthly deposit is credited to the escrow account as a result.
Withdrawal of the escrow funds for completion of interim goals stated on the ITSP. A final disbursement is awarded to the FSS participant after all goals are completed.
A successful FSS graduate?
A successful graduate are the FSS participants that fulfills all of their responsibilities under the COP and does receives welfare-cash assistance 12-month prior.
Contacts for the FSS Program:
Senior Service Coordinator