Chez Hope gets $273,561 in funding from state agency
The Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services is funding 18 domestic violence service providers across the state based on the previous year’s funding amounts, and for the first time takes into account the size of the population served, square miles covered and the quality of the service provided.
The funding level for domestic violence providers for the 2013-14 Fiscal Year is $6 million, an increase of more than $840,000 from last year’s final allocation after mid-year reductions.
Chez Hope, based in Franklin, is receiving $273,561 in funding.
“I testified in front of the state legislature this spring that DCFS was committed to better aligning domestic violence resources and ensuring that all of Louisiana has access to quality services,” said DCFS Secretary Suzy Sonnier. “We continue to work toward that goal. Including in our calculations the population served, the number of square miles covered and the quality of service is a good first step.”
The funding formula begins with an initial amount for each provider equal to the previous year’s allocation. DCFS then took the funding increase provided in the budget signed by Governor Bobby Jindal and divided it based on the size of the population and the number of square miles each program serves. Finally, some providers are given an incentive or reduction based on their Committee of Quality Assurance score, which measures quality of services including emergency shelter care, and crisis services.
COQA scores are given by the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence. The program uses self-study, review of provider policies and procedures, and an on-site visit to measure provider services, like shelter, counseling, crisis lines and children’s programs, as well as administrative areas, including board responsibilities, personnel matters, safety and health codes. Louisiana established its COQA standards in 2000.
DCFS will work closely with providers and stakeholders this year to study and develop a comprehensive and integrated statewide plan for delivery of domestic violence services. DCFS will report on its effort in January to the Louisiana House and Senate committees on Health and Welfare, as requested by House Resolution 76 by Rep. John Schroder and Senate Resolution 95 by Sen. Mike Walsworth during the 2013 legislative session.
“We are focused on the continuum of services for those who experience the effects of domestic violence,” Sonnier said. “Domestic violence services must go beyond sheltering to include prevention, education and outreach. By working with the Coalition and Domestic Violence Stakeholders, we can transition to evidence-based national best practices focusing on outreach and prevention, and ensure that all people have access to these services regardless of where they live.”