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Word from the Executive Director: HCPS Core Values
Published on March 31, 2017 by Christina M. Wright in Word from the ED
I am delighted to introduce the new HCPS core values – principles that reflect what is truly important to us, how we go about doing our work and practices we will use in everything we do. As Executive Director, I placed development of these core values as one of my top priorities. It is part of a larger initiative to strategically begin crafting the HCPS culture to better reflect the agency we have become. We were born as a child welfare board with one purpose and have expanded over the past 50 years into an entire county department with  more than a dozen programs serving vulnerable adults, children at-risk and abused and neglected children. We need values that bring our staff together to fulfill our vision to better the lives of children and adults in Harris County. We wanted as many blocs of HCPS to help develop these core values, as they are the ones who know most about our needs and our clients’ needs. The HCPS Quality Improvement Team gathered online survey information from staff and the HCPS Board of Directors and formed a group of representatives from across the agency and parent partners. This group reviewed the survey information and past values recommendations to develop five core values: Help – We HELP restore and transform lives. Excellence – We strive for EXCELLENCE in carrying out our mission. Accountability – We hold ourselves ACCOUNTABLE to our clients, our community and to each other. Respect – We show RESPECT for the dignity and worth of every person. Teamwork – We promote TEAMWORK by building trusting relationships. These are values we will live and breathe every day in the workplace, from the caseworkers  and support staff to the Executive Director. The community will soon find these declarations posted at all our HCPS buildings. Internally, we will begin training, hiring and evaluating based on these beliefs. In closing, I would like to leave you with a story I sent to staff with the release of our core values: In 1962, President John F. Kennedy visited the NASA Space Center and stopped to speak with a janitor sweeping the floor. In response to the president’s question about what the janitor was doing, he responded, “I’m putting a man on the moon.” To some, this janitor was just cleaning the building. But he saw the bigger picture. He understood he was part of the overall mission. By keeping the facility clean, this man was helping make history. Here’s the point: No matter your role at HCPS, you are contributing to the agency’s mission. And when HCPS embraces that type of attitude and belief system, incredible things can happen.
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HCPS Integrated Clinic highlighted by Hogg Foundation

Published on January 20, 2017 by Christina M. Wright in In the News

Integrated health care is the coordination of physical and behavioral health care. In 2012, Harris County Protective Services (HCPS) received funding from the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health to plan and implement an integrated health care program for children ages birth through 17 in state care. Stakeholders in protective services reported that the existing system of care was a "broken" system.

Read more from the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health.

Recent News

Word from the Executive Director: HCPS Core Values 
Published on March 31, 2017 by Christina M. Wright in Word from the ED
I am delighted to introduce the new HCPS core values – principles that reflect what is truly important to us, how we go about doing our work and practices we will use in everything we do. As Executive Director, I placed development of these core values as one of my top priorities. It is part of a larger initiative to strategically begin crafting the HCPS culture to better reflect the agency we have become. We were born as a child welfare board with one purpose and have expanded over the past 50 years into an entire county department with  more than a dozen programs serving vulnerable adults, children at-risk and abused and neglected children. We need values that bring our staff together to fulfill our vision to better the lives of children and adults in Harris County. We wanted as many blocs of HCPS to help develop these core values, as they are the ones who know most about our needs and our clients’ needs. The HCPS Quality Improvement Team gathered online survey information from staff and the HCPS Board of ...
HAY Center Prom Event outfits foster youth 
Published on March 30, 2017 by Christina M. Wright in Newsletter
Five years ago, Phyllis Ocean fitted a vision-impaired teenager in a maroon dress. She and another volunteer at The HAY Center Prom Readiness Event had helped the foster youth pick out the dress, silver shoes and accessories. “She just lit up; she looked radiant,” Ocean recalled recently. “All teenagers deserve to have that special moment” of finding the perfect prom outfit. Ocean, a member of the Houston Bar Association, was one of more than 90 volunteers who helped nearly 80 foster youth prepare their night-to-remember garb on March 27. Volunteer groups also included the Houston Young Lawyers Association, Benefit Bettie and Bellaire United Methodist Church. “We extend the most heart-felt thank you to every volunteer, staff member and donor who has contributed to this event for the past six years,” said Mary Green, director of The HAY Center. “Without their generosity, this event could never happen.” The HAY Center converted its entire West Clay Street building into a mini store, complete with racks of donated dresses and suits, ties, shoes, undergarments and jewelry. Each foster youth was treated to a personal shopper to help ...
HCPS Integrated Clinic highlighted by Hogg Foundation 
Published on January 20, 2017 by Christina M. Wright in In the News
Integrated health care is the coordination of physical and behavioral health care. In 2012, Harris County Protective Services (HCPS) received funding from the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health to plan and implement an integrated health care program for children ages birth through 17 in state care. Stakeholders in protective services reported that the existing system of care was a "broken" system. Read more from the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health.
HCPS retirees honored for combined 125 years of dedication 
Published on November 21, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in Newsletter
HCPS proudly recognized four retirees whose totaled years of dedicated service to HCPS surpassed 125 years.  The four retirees were:  Debra Andrews Training Institute Director Andrews retired with 20 years of service. In her final position as Training Institute director, she headed the department revamp and helped develop a unique prevention assessment tool. Ross Galizio CYS Supervisor Galizio retired with 27 years of service to HCPS, finishing his tenure as a vital member of the Community Youth Services (CYS) team, which helps youth and their families through in-community crisis intervention. Claudia Flores Administrative Support Flores retired with 43 years of service to HCPS. She held several administrative positions over her tenure, the last with the HCPS Parent/Teen Survival program. Robbie Pennington Accounting Supervisor Pennington retired with 39 years of service. She was instrumental in the financial organization of the Guardianship Program, which HCPS acquired in 2003.
New HCPS board members: Sheila Aron & Darryl King 
Published on November 21, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in Newsletter
An author and a Houston-based entrepreneur joined the HCPS board this quarter, nearly filling the seats on the 15-member board. Sheila Aron is a parenting book author who has a passion for child abuse prevention. In October, Aron donated 100 copies of her book, “I’m Glad I’m Me: Weaving the Thread of Love From Generation to Generation” to foster parents. Darryl King is co-founder and CEO of management consulting firm Principle Partnering Group, LLC. King serves on several local and statewide boards for organizations dedicated to outreach, business and youth. Commissioner Steve Radack, Precinct 3, appointed Aron. Commissioner Jack Cagle, Precinct 4, appointed King. 
Youth On B.O.A.R.D. vice president active in community, career 
Published on November 21, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in Newsletter
The unassuming teenager, slim and soft-spoken, took the stage. Suddenly, a sweet, smooth jazz rendition of “The Children are Our Future,” filled the Houston Junior League ballroom during the “At the Heart of Families Luncheon.” Kymora Anderson, 16, is that teenager. She has been part of the HCPS Youth On B.O.A.R.D. for three years, but it is just one item on her growing pre-collegiate resume. The high school junior sings all genres. She said Youth On B.O.A.R.D. gave her the confidence to pursue and thrive in other areas of her life. She was instrumental in the youth’s anti-stigma workshop and another improving youth and adult relationships. Youth On B.O.A.R.D. encourages teenagers to have a voice. By all appearances, Anderson has found hers.
Editorial: There should be no debate about protecting our senior citizens 
Published on November 17, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in In the News
Elder abuse is all too common in Harris County. It's not just instances of severe neglect such as the case in north Houston that made national headlines in 2013 when three malnourished elderly men were found inside a garage. They had been without access to a bathroom for a year. But financial abuse is prevalent, too. Harris County Commissioners Court has the opportunity to step up its efforts to protect the elderly when it votes today to accept a grant from the federal government to create a senior assessment center. Read more from The Houston Chronicle.
County officials: Raise education requirements for CPS caseworkers 
Published on November 17, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in In the News
Facing significant turnover of Child Protective Services caseworkers, a state agency this year waived the requirement that applicants have bachelor's degrees from college. But that decision won't help the children that the state is trying to protect, say the leaders of Harris County Protective Services, which for 50 years has helped CPS address child welfare in the county. The leaders conveyed their concerns in a recent letter to DFPS. Read more from The Houston Chronicle.
Agencies unite to save seniors from abuse, exploitation 
Published on November 17, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in In the News
Experts expect ... elderly exploitation to increase as Baby Boomers age and the vulnerable senior population surges, a prospect that's forcing Harris County officials to better understand and address cases of exploitation, abuse and neglect. They're proposing creating a "senior justice assessment center," which would, for the first time, bring a handful of health care, city and county government officials together under one roof. Read more from The Houston Chronicle.
Retiring Harris County official 'made his mark' on protective services 
Published on November 17, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in In the News
When George Ford was a sophomore at East Baptist Texas College, he took a sociology class and the idea of becoming a child welfare worker simply "struck a chord." Now Ford, 68, is retiring from the department, which has grown from roughly 50 employees to more than 300. It has come to provide a variety of services for youth transitioning out of foster care, counseling for at-risk students at school, and diversion programs to keep youth out of the foster care and juvenile justice systems. Read more from The Houston Chronicle.
HCPS sponsors brunch recognizing foster parents 
Published on November 16, 2016 by Christina M. Wright in Newsletter
HCPS sponsored an October brunch for nearly 40 foster parents in Harris County.  Through a close partnership, the event was hosted by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services and sponsored by HCPS. Paul Shanklin, of Precinct 4, served as master of ceremony, enriching the programming with a song and encouragement that all should enjoy the morning. The usual December event was held in October this year to relieve some of the holiday pressure and encourage family time.  HCPS also arranged for an ice cream social where 26 foster youth could mingle while their guardians enjoyed brunch.