Social services program.
The agent understands its responsibilities under the housing management agreement to provide a social services program for the project. As outlined previously in this plan, the agent intends to provide two full-time employees to work in the project: a resident manager and a maintenance man. No funds exist to provide a separate employee to handle social services; therefore, the agent's resident manager will be in charge of the social services effort.
The resident manager's function in the area of social services might best be described as "enabling." The resident manager will receive training from the agent's social services specialists in how to discover what social resources exist in the local community which are available to tenants. The resident manager will receive training in the operation of the state and county departments of social services and how to work with caseworkers and supervisors regarding recipient's budgets, etc.; he will receive training in job and employment counselling and in the location of local employment resources; he will receive training in budgeting and home management, as well as in how to locate local resources in these areas; he will receive training in the operation of the local community action agency and in methods to encourage CAA assistance in the project.
In a word, the resident manager will do directly those social activities, such as budgeting and employment counselling, which his limited time permits; beyond that the resident manager will make it his business to establish contacts with all social service agencies in the community so he will be able to refer tenants to the appropriate agency where help might be available.
In addition, the resident manager will work directly with the tenant organization in stimulating such activities as the tenant organization might wish to undertake. Examples might be: formation of cooperative food-buying club; formation of cooperative day care—utilizing space which might be available from a local church; regular presentations to tenant meetings on topics of interest to the tenants (e.g., individual legal rights, consumer education, etc.).
It is admitted that the social services program here outlined is minimal and will not begin to meet all of the needs of the tenants, many of whom are unemployed or receiving public assistance, undereducated, etc. Supplemental management funds would be required to provide such a program. The agent does feel however, that an informed and empathetic resident manager can provide a great deal of assistance to tenants through the activities described above. It is also expected that the project sponsor, _________, will be able to participate in some way in providing general assistance to tenants.
The agent's attitude about social services derives from its attitudes about tenant organization: as the tenants should control the tenant organization and make it to work in their best interest, so too should the tenants play the major directive role in the social services program. The resident manager will assist the tenant organization in implementing those projects which serve to meet expressed tenant needs; there will be no imposing of social programs by the resident manager.
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