HCHRA Hosts Partnership Dinner in Honor of National Community Action Month

In honor of National Community Action Month, Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) celebrated with its board of directors and sustaining partners to share the agency’s 2017 achievements.  Observed annually in May, National Community Action Month was created by the Community Action Partnership to call attention to the Community Action programs that help thousands of families achieve self-sufficiency.

During the May 16th dinner, HCHRA leaders showcased their 2017 accomplishments and gave partners a first-hand look at the struggles low-income families face.  HCHRA showed how community action agencies such as theirs empower these families to become self-reliant.  Guests received updates on the outcomes of more than a dozen Community Action programs operated by HCHRA. The agency’s report revealed that of the more than 244,000 people residing in Hinds County, approximately 48,244 people living in 20,000 households, live in poverty.  HCHRA provided opportunities to over 5,000 of those households last year.  “These numbers show that we’re making great strides in creating opportunities, but they also show there’s still a lot of need,” said Kenn Cockrell, the president and CEO of HCHRA. “Our goal now is to figure out how to serve the other 15,000 households while funding virtually remains the same.  We’re doing a good job with what we have, but we don’t have enough funding to do all that we need to.”

Roger Lutrell, vice president for planning and development, presented the agency’s 2017 Annual Report, highlighting its education, employment, transportation, nutrition, and home energy assistance programs and the benefits and opportunities each provided.  Following Lutrell’s presentation, David Knight, the agency’s executive vice president and chief operations officer, talked about the continuous circular pattern in which HCHRA has historically operated and how it will use this pattern to become even more effective in 2018 and beyond.  Knight explained that the old way of doing business – where each of the agency’s programs start, operate and stop based on an annual cycle, and then start that same process all over again – is over.  “HCHRA has become an action learning agency, meaning we will work to identify better, more efficient ways of doing what we’ve always done while we’re doing the work, because there’s no time to stop,” said Knight.  “We are adopting new technologies and implementing new approaches to make sure we provide the right opportunities for success and produce even greater outcomes. The information and data on what works is there.  Now we have to use it the most we can.”

HCHRA is a public, non-profit Community Action Agency dedicated to helping families and strengthening communities.  For more than 40 years, it has built its reputation in eradicating poverty by empowering disadvantaged Hinds County citizens to become self-reliant and realize their full potential.  It is the largest Community Action Agency in central Mississippi, and the only one in Hinds County.  Through Head Start, Early Head Start, congregate and home-delivered meals, home energy assistance, rural transportation, case management, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Earned Income Tax Credit programs, HCHRA continues to improve the conditions of children, families, single adults, the elderly and citizens with disabilities throughout Hinds County.

For more information on HCHRA programs and services, click here or call (601) 923-3930.

Head Start Recruitment and Job Fair Extravaganza – Friday, June 8th!

On Friday, June 8, 2018, Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) will host a Head Start Recruitment and Job Fair Extravaganza from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at its central office located at 258 Maddox Road in Jackson, Mississippi.  The extravaganza will provide a myriad of opportunities for those who attend.

During the extravaganza, HCHRA’s Personnel Department will be accepting applications and providing information on job opportunities available for social workers, bus drivers, case managers, center administrators, cooks, custodians, family services workers, family & community services specialists, teachers, quality assurance specialists, security guards, transportation specialists and the vice president of Head Start and early childhood programs.  For a complete list of job openings, click here.  This could be the day you start a new career!

Several staff members from the Department of Family Opportunities will be on hand to assist parents with the Head Start application process. HCHRA provides a comprehensive education program for children ages 0 to 5 years old, along with medical, dental, nutrition and disability services, all at no cost to parents.  We have 16 Head Start and Early Head Start centers located throughout Hinds County in the cities of Jackson, Byram, Bolton, Edwards, Terry, and Utica.  To apply, bring proof of child’s age, family’s income, and Hinds County residency. Families of children with disabilities are encouraged to apply regardless of income. Recruitment has already begun and slots are being filled daily. This is a great time to apply without having to schedule an appointment.

After exploring career opportunities or registering your child for Head Start, don’t leave hungry.  From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the agency will be serving hot lunch plates with catfish fillets, spaghetti, coleslaw, dessert and a beverage for only $10.  All proceeds will go to benefit HCHRA programs.  You can even call (601) 923-1794 to place your order in advance, and we’ll have it ready for pick-up. 

“This is our fifth year hosting the Head Start Recruitment and Job Fair Extravaganza and it has proven to be a great opportunity for community engagement,” said Kenn Cockrell, HCHRA president and CEO.  “The greater good, however, is that HCHRA uses this event to respond to the need for education and employment opportunities, which were identified by Hinds County residents and area organizational partners in our annual Community Strengths and Needs Assessment survey as two of the biggest problems to attaining self-sufficiency.  The Extravaganza is one of the ways we’re providing real solutions with measurable outcomes for putting people to work and providing a quality education to children whose families cannot afford the high cost of preschool – helping to end cycles of poverty.”

If you’re interested in enrolling your child in Head Start or applying for a job with HCHRA but can’t come to the June 8th Extravaganza, don’t worry, you can use our online services.

Click here to schedule an appointment with an opportunity advisor.

Click here to view a complete list of job openings and submit an application online.

Head Start Centers Get New Signs. Can You See Us Now?

HCHRA recently installed new signage at several of its Head Start Centers located throughout Hinds County.  This was a major project that took months to complete, but was well worth the time and effort.

HCHRA has operated the Head Start Program since 1976.  Over the years, signs were erected as new centers were opened and then they were replaced when needed.  “Some of our signs displayed our old logo and needed to be updated, and several were simply worn due to years of exposure to the elements,” said Kenn Cockrell, HCHRA’s president and CEO.  “Head Start offers a very high quality education program, and we want our signage to reflect that.”  Cockrell went on to explain that in addition to achieving uniformity among all centers and promoting visibility in the community, the signs were installed as part of the program’s safety plan to ensure that all of its sites are easily identifiable in case of emergencies.

The Head Start center located in Terry, Mississippi, was named (posthumously) in honor of Eulander P. Kendrick in 2002.  Mrs. Kendrick joined Head Start in 1969 as a teacher aide and served as center administrator from August 1990 until her retirement in August 2000.  Under her leadership, the Terry Head Start Center was the first center to receive accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).  Joseph O. Kendrick, Sr., the husband of the late Eulander Kendrick, commented, “I was proud to see the new signs installed.  It’s been a long time coming.  The Head Start Center was my wife’s pride and joy.  She would spend countless hours at night working on lesson plans for her kids’ class work for the next day.  She was dedicated to making sure that all the children would be ready for the next level in their education. ” Mr. Kendrick’s son, Joseph Jr., serves as the mayor of the town of Terry.  Mayor Kendrick says, “This really means a lot to my father because he hoped that this would be done while he was still alive.  When we saw the new signs, family members began to stop and take pictures.  We are very appreciative.  They look great.”

Mayor Kendrick submitted photos of the new signs to be included in the town of Terry’s history book marking their 150th year celebration in hopes they will make the publication not only to celebrate the legacy of his mother, but to also mark the longstanding presence of Head Start and its historic role in the education of young children in the community.

Like the building and ground signs installed at Eulander P. Kendrick Head Start, new signage has been installed at the Edwards, Oak Forest, Richard Brandon, Edwards, Gertrude Ellis, Mary C. Jones, Martin, Midtown, St. Thomas, South Jackson, Welcome, and Westside Head Start Centers.  Can you see us now?

HCHRA Meets 100% of CSBG Program Standards

On March 19, 2018, Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) received notice from the Mississippi Department of Human Services that following a review by the Division of Community Services, HCHRA was found to have met 100% of the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Program organization standards for 2017.

The Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Services (OCS), a federal entity, requires states to establish a set of organizational standards as part of performance management and accountability for the CSBG Program.  In the case of Hinds County Human Resource Agency, the Mississippi Department of Human Services has both the authority and responsibility for oversight for the agency’s CSBG Program.

The standards by which HCHRA’s performance was measured were designed to ensure that the agency has a capacity to provide high-quality services to low-income families and communities.  During its review, the Division of Community Services looked at HCHRA’s consumer input and involvement, community engagement, community assessment, organizational leadership, board governance, strategic planning, human resource management, and financial operations and oversight.

“To go from achieving 95% of the standards in 2016, to meeting 100% in 2017, is a testament to our commitment to continuous improvement,” said Kenn Cockrell, HCHRA president and CEO.  “We will continue to work to maintain the high standard of excellence that has been set.”

For more information on the organizational standards for CSBG eligible programs, visit www.nascsp.org/Performance-Management/967/Organizational-Standards.aspx.

Project SOAR! Tuesday, March 6, 2018 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. HCHRA’s Biggest Community Outreach Event Ever.

Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) is hosting Project SOAR – a Services, Opportunities, Assistance and Resources fair – on Tuesday, March 6, 2018, for all of Hinds County.

Project SOAR is going to be a huge event.  HCHRA will have over 20 case managers available to provide utility payment assistance on the spot.  No appointment is necessary.  Not only will we offer energy assistance on this day, but there will also be health screenings, financial, medical, education, social and safety services – all in one place.

The following documents are required to receive utility payment assistance:

❑ Picture ID for ALL ADULT (18 years and over) household members
❑ Social Security cards for ALL household members
❑ Proof of all Household Income for ALL adults (18 years and older) must cover the “last 30 days.” If your proof of income does not cover the last 30 days, approval will be delayed.
❑ Current bills for which you want assistance
❑ Authorization of Release of Information (required annually). HCHRA will provide this document.
❑ Guardianship documentation for any children who are not direct legal child of person applying

To ensure compliance with all HCHRA, state, and federal laws, guidelines, rules, and
regulations, your application for assistance cannot be processed until all documentation is received. Additional documents may be required for other additional situations or specific services.

Please note, income includes employment wages, child support, unemployment benefits, VA pensions, private retirement, etc.

*If you gained employment or had any changes in employment within the last 30 days and do not have 30 days of income verification, you must be able to verify start, end or temporary off dates by a document on the company’s letterhead.

*If you receive or do not receive child support for children 18 years and under, you must submit a printed verification statement from MDHS to show that you receive child support, or a printed verification statement to show that you have applied for child support within the last 30 days.

Fixed Income for All Household Members: SSI and Social Security Benefits Verification Letter or Printout for current year (not a past year).

Self-Employed: Bring account books, purchase and sales receipts, copy of past year’s federal income tax return, or a notarized statement of verified income for last 30 days.



Head Start Centers Closed Wednesday, January 17. Central Office and Neighborhood Services Centers Open at 10 a.m.

Due to the severe weather conditions in our area, all Hinds County Human Resource Agency Head Start Centers will be closed on Wednesday, January 17, 2018.  The centers will reopen on Thursday, and children may report to school at their usual time.

Central Office and all HCHRA Neighborhood Service Centers will open at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday.

Should severe weather conditions persist throughout the day, HCHRA will post any updates or changes to Agency operations here on our website.  If no additional updates are posted, HCHRA offices will be open on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m.

All HCHRA Offices Closed Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Due to dangerous winter weather and road conditions, all HCHRA offices will be closed on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.  Head Start Centers and HCHRA offices are scheduled to resume normal operations on Wednesday, January 17th.

If you had an appointment for assistance, we will make every effort to reschedule you within the next few days.  Please call 601.923.3950 to reschedule your appointment.

Conditions are favorable for ice formation on roads and bridges.  Authorities are encouraging everyone to stay off of the roads unless travel is absolutely necessary.

Head Start Centers Closed Tuesday, January 16. Central Office and Neighborhood Services Centers Open at 10 a.m.

Due to the threat of severe weather conditions in our area, all Hinds County Human Resource Agency Head Start Centers will be closed on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.  The centers will reopen on Wednesday, and children may report to school at their usual time.

Central Office and all HCHRA Neighborhood Service Centers will open at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday.

Should severe weather conditions persist throughout the day, HCHRA will post any updates or changes to Agency operations here on our website.  If no additional updates are posted, HCHRA offices will be open on Tuesday at 10:00 a.m.

Willowood Developmental Center Head Start Classrooms Will Open on Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Willowood Developmental Center Head Start classrooms will reopen on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.  The center will remain closed until that time in anticipation of water pressure being restored to safe operating conditions.  The health and safety of our students and staff is very important to us, and we thank you for your patience as we have had to make adjustments during this challenging time.

As a reminder, don’t forget to celebrate the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday on Monday, January 15, 2018.  The King Holiday celebrates the life and legacy of a man who brought hope and healing to America.  On this day, we commemorate Dr. King’s great dream of a vibrant, multiracial nation united in justice, peace and reconciliation, unconditional love, forgiveness and nonviolence.  It is also a day of service all across the nation to help build the beloved community of King’s dream.


Willowood Developmental Center Head Start Classrooms Closed Until Further Notice (January 9, 2018)

Due to the ongoing health and safety concerns resulting from no water pressure at Willowood Developmental Center, all Willowood Developmental Center Head Start classrooms will remain closed until further notice.

Head Start staff is in communication with the building manager each evening and every morning to assess the status of the water pressure to determine when it is safe for our Head Start students to return.  We will be sure to notify you as soon as the water pressure returns to normal and all conditions are safe for students to return to school.

Please know that the education and safety of our students is very important to us.  We truly apologize for the inconvenience this has caused and hope that the water pressure issues will soon be resolved.

Again, thank you for your patience as the City of Jackson works tirelessly to get us through this temporary inconvenience.