In providing for human services needs, Palm Beach County augments its own services mix by providing financial assistance to community-based organizations. Financially Assisted Agencies (FAA) is a program within the Administrative section of the Department of Community Services. It was established in the early 1980s.
Funded organizations are monitored by the Community Services Department to maintain strict fiscal and service integrity. Funding given by the Board of County Commissioners to local health and human service program agencies throughout Palm Beach County is managed by several staff within the department.
The funds are monitored by two program monitors. Data collected from the funded agencies as well as other County resources for planning purposes is managed by a two planners. The department staff operates under the supervision of Channell Wilkins, Director of Community Services. A volunteer, Board of County Commissioner's appointed Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) has input on the FAA process as well. The mission of the CAC is to "assist" the Board of County Commissioners in the assessment of need, planning and implementation and evaluation of the System of Care, as defined in the Health and Human Services Element of the Palm Beach County Comprehensive Plan." Essentially, the committee recommends service priorities prior to the RFP process. They base these recommendations on community assessments and other information gathering processes.
Currently, the County funds approximately $13,000,000 million dollars to local agencies through the formal RFP process. The CAC incorporates the Health and Human Services Element of the Comprehensive Plan into its decision-making process. The purpose of the Health and Human Services Element is "to assist in the development of an infrastructure to ensure availability of health and human services sufficient to protect the health, safety and welfare of Palm Beach County residents.
The Element identifies the County's role in funding, providing and/or supporting the delivery of health and human services; it also defines the County's relationship with other funders and providers of services for the purpose of maximizing the resources and benefits available to Palm Beach County residents." (Palm Beach County-HHS Element, Revised 04/12/01)
The staff goal with the FAA process is to continue working closely with the community and funders and find the best way to supplement services that are recognized as "needs" to agencies. These agencies continue to demonstrate their ability to provide useful and valuable services to the clients they serve.