Family Assessment Procedure Policy Number and Last Update (02.02.03/04-2014)

At the first home visit after registration, the family service worker completes the Family Assessment by interviewing the parents. The purpose of this survey is to determine the family's immediate social-service needs, and to help the parents develop goals.

If the family has basic social service needs, i.e. emergency food or food stamps, housing, beds, or clothing, the FSC should make an immediate referral, providing transportation and translation if the family needs it. She should contact the family one or two days after the service to learn whether the services were satisfactory. (if they were not - if some problem with services occurred, the FSC should attempt to resolve it by talking to the agency, etc.)

The FSC helps the parents develop goals based on answers to the interview questions. For example, if the parent answers "sometimes" to "feels overwhelmed by the needs of my child," she might establish a goal of learning more about child guidance. The FSC and mother together break the goal into measurable parts, e.g.,. "attend Parent Café at MSHS center," "learn 10-minute calming technique and practice it every day," "establish bed-time routines for children," etc.

The goals don't need to be completed all on the first day. It is an ongoing process to establish and meet goals, and is the object of subsequent monthly home visits and conversations. The job of the FSC in this process is to assist people to see their actual goals and to take whatever steps they can to reach them. Finding "resources" on the internet, printing them, and distributing them to parents does not satisfy the FSC's responsibility. In some cases, the FSC might ask for help of another coordinator, who could visit the family to discuss a specific issue, e.g., the Education Coordinator to discuss child guidance at home.

At the last home visit of the season, the FSC conducts the family assessment interview again, and documents any changes in the parents' answers.