March  2015

Meet Elijah 


Elijah would best be described as an artistic little man who loves to color and attend his art class. When he isn't coloring or painting, he plays video games. He is pleasant, courteous to his caregivers and energetic. Ask Elijah and he'll say he's funny - and it shows when he tells his favorite jokes.


Some of Elijah's favorite video games are Cars 2, Transformers, and Speed Racer. Speed Racer has influenced him so much that he hopes to become a race car driver when he grows up! When he's not playing video games or coloring, Elijah entertains himself by watching television shows such as SpongeBob and Bubble Guppies or movies like Transformers and Scooby Doo. Elijah also likes to play outside, especially with his superhero toys.


Elijah would love a puppy and hopes he finds a family with pets. Elijah will need ongoing medical care and an attentive family that can make sure he gets proper treatment.


Please contact us if you can provide a loving home for Elijah and can care for his needs with understanding and support. 


Cases For Love Campaign Ends With More 5,000 Suitcases   

When the Cases for Love campaign began on Jan. 5, a goal was set of collecting 1,200 suitcases for our foster children. Due to the overwhelming generosity of the community, more than 5,500 bags were collected.

Thanks to Julie Phillippi-Whitney, who thought of the collection campaign, and to Sibcy Cline, which allowed the use of its offices as collection points. 


Moira Weir, director of HCJFS, was present as the bags were loaded into a moving van on Valentine's Day. 
"It's been wonderful to see the community come together," she said. "We're very grateful."


Many of our children are removed from their homes at all hours of the night and often carry what little belongings they have in garbage bags.  These suticases, duffel bags and b ackpacks will allow our foster children to carry their belongings to their placement homes in a more dignified and secure manner.

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The FAMILY Fund - a New Way to Help Our Kids and Families


I  am very excited about a new development involving our agency: a separate fund has been created to help beyond the food, medical care, employment and other assistance one can obtain from JFS.

At the request of several community members who serve as advocates for the children and families we serve, the Friends and Advocates Making Investments in Local Youth (FAMILY) Fund was created to help cover expenses that are either not permitted under state and federal programs financed by taxpayer contributions, or for which there are limited funds.

I started out as a Children's Services caseworker more than 20 years ago and I know personally that a child or family often has needs beyond what this agency can legally provide. I know foster children who age out of the system and then walk to work because they can't afford a car. I have met foster children who cannot afford a prom dress or the money to apply to the college of their choice. I know families who do not celebrate Christmas because they do not have the money for gifts.

Our caseworkers often dip into their own pockets to help. But many times, the children and families do without.

The FAMILY Fund can change some of that. 




Gov. Kasich Touts HCJFS for Coordinated Service to Clients


Ohio Gov. John Kasich chose the offices of Hamilton County Department of Job and Family Services as the location to talk about Blueprint for A New Ohio, his plan to bring more coordination to social service delivery in the state.


Hamilton County is one of the few counties in the state that handles so many aspects of helping people to self-sufficiency, including child support, child and adult protection, cash and food assistance and job training. We were praised for being a one-stop shop.


"We don't need separate this and that," Kasich said in a speech before local service providers, including representatives of Talbert House, Hamilton County Community Action Agency, Easter Seals and the Cincinnati Chamber.


A "360 approach" will be more beneficial to clients, he said, and more cost-efficient for taxpayers.


Doug Lumpkin, former director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, is Kasich's director of Human Services Innovation. He highlighted HCJFS' work, as did Commissioner Greg Hartmann.


"We're not messing around," Kasich said. "The days of silo welfare treatment in this state have got to come to an end."


It's Time to Start Planning for Child Abuse Prevention Month 


Spring may seem like forever away since we still have snow outside. But we're already planning our events for April, which is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.


We'll join with other children's services agencies on April 8 by wearing blue, the color chosen as a memorial to children who have suffered abuse or neglect. Please plan to join us in blue and post your picture on social media. We'll be sharing them on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.


If you'd like to be involved in our events, please contact Jane Prendergast.