The Family Self-Sufficiency Program (FSS) is designed to provide services which promote employment and self-sufficiency for Housing Choice Voucher participants.
Family self-sufficiency (FSS) is a HUD program that encourages communities to develop local strategies to help voucher families obtain employment that will lead to economic independence and self-sufficiency. Public housing agencies (PHAs) work with welfare agencies, schools, businesses, and other local partners to develop a comprehensive program that gives participating FSS family members the skills and experience to enable them to obtain employment that pays a living wage.
How does the Family Self-Sufficiency program work?
FSS is a five-year program designed to help HCV families become economically independent. All that’s needed is a desire to become self-sufficient and the willingness to set goals and take the steps to make it happen.
Who can participate?
The FSS program is a Voluntary Program. Any current HCV head of household can sign up. The FSS program can help you set goals and/or meet goals you have already set.
There are two main features to FSS:
- Escrow Account:When HCV participants succeed in raising their earned income (through pay increases, changing jobs, etc.), the portion of the rent they are responsible for also increases. When the family is on the FSS program, these increases result in money being deposited into an interest-bearing escrow account.
- Case Management:Each family in the FSS program is provided with a case manager. The case manager works with the family to develop an FSS contract and help the family access supportive services in the community. Among the service that families can access through the FSS program are transportation, credit and money counseling, and educational programs.
What are the main reasons for families to participate in FSS?
- Accumulation of Assets. The FSS program gives families an opportunity to realize the full benefit of increased earnings. While FSS participants still must pay increased rental charges when their income increases, the portion of the rent increase attributable to higher earned income goes into their escrow accounts. Although each family’s experience will be different, some families have accumulated as much as $10,000 in their escrow accounts.
- Access to Services. The FSS coordinator/case manager will assess the needs of each family and develop an individual training and service plan with the head of household. FSS case manager may be able to help families obtain such services as job training, education programs, including GED preparation, credit counseling and repair and home ownership counseling
For more information please contact Adelaide Proctor at 843-918-1528.
Additional Information for the FSS Program: