Family Self-Sufficiency Program
Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) is a voluntary, five-year program that requires participation in areas that will allow participant to meet their goals. Areas of development could be in job training, career planning, financial literacy education, budgeting, saving, and establishing good credit. MVPHA Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program helps reduce the dependency of low-income families on Welfare assistance, federal, state, and/or local subsidies. To meet this objective, the FSS program matches housing assistance families with existing community services to achieve economic self-sufficiency.
How the Program Works
The Family Self-Sufficiency program is available to all Housing Choice Voucher participants who have been in the program at least one year and are in good standing, want to overcome barriers, and take advantage of their educational and earning potential.
In the program, the head of household works with the FSS Coordinator to establish goals and develop a personalized action plan to meet those goals. Services are tailored to the participant's needs and include skills assessment, GED preparation, career planning, computer literacy and skills training, money management workshops, childcare referrals, and credit repair workshops.
An attractive incentive of the program is the Savings (Escrow) Account that is opened for the family. As the FSS participants reach their goals, and their earned income increases, MVPHA deposits money into the escrow account for the participant families. Once FSS participants achieve all their established goals, including maintaining full-time employment, do not rely on rental assistance, then they receive the money in the account plus interest.
Once a participant is accepted into the FSS program, he/she must sign a Contract of Participation and together with the FSS Coordinator will develop an Individual Training and Service Plan (ITSP). To graduate, the FSS program participants must achieve all the goals in their ITSP plan, be welfare free for 12 consecutive months prior to graduating, and have a suitable job. When they graduate from the FSS program, participants may use these funds as they wish. Completion of the FSS Program is a great way to start and build a better life for you and your family.
Benefits of the FSS program include
- Career and Educational counseling
- Educational workshops (e.g., nutrition, parenting skills, GED preparation, ESL, money management and obtaining the proper basic skills and education needed to enter the workplace)
- Community Networking
- Job Preparation assistance
- Educational institution and financial aid assistance
- Credit repair assistance
- FSS Escrow accounts
- Homeownership counseling
- Referral services
To date, many families have graduated from the FSS program successfully. Achieving educational goals and commencing on rewarding careers in a variety of fields. FSS graduates have used their savings for down payments on homes, to pay for schooling, to purchase cars, to pay off debt and more. The following FSS graduates have escrowed from $1,000-$17,000:
||Sally Nichols; Teresa Castillo
||Cristina Torres; Tiffany Dons Gillespie; Ernesto Rodriguez
“As an FSS participant, the most I got from this program was to become a homeowner, which was my main goal after completing the program. Without this program, I don't feel I would be able to accomplish this goal since I took advantage of all the tools this program offers. I hope more future participants can succeed with this program.” - Ernesto A Rodriguez
Become a success story, put in the effort and hard work to reap the reward. Enroll in the FSS Program.