Head Start Centers and Central Office Closing Early Today

The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for an accumulation of snow and ice.

To ensure the safety of our students, clients and staff, Hinds County Human Resource Agency’s Head Start centers and Central Office will close early today.

All Head Start centers will close at 1:00 p.m.   Parents are asked to pick up their children from the centers at 1:00 p.m.  Children who ride the bus, will be transported home beginning at 1:00 p.m.  If you have questions or need more information, please contact your Center Administrator.

Central Office will close at 2:00 p.m.  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.

Join the #GivingTuesday Movement on November 29, 2016


Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) is a part of the #GivingTuesday movement, and we ask you to join us in our commitment to helping families, especially this holiday season.

Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving.  Since 2012, #GivingTuesday has become a world-wide day of giving that celebrates and supports giving to bring about real change in communities.  It provides a platform to encourage the donation of time, resources and talents to empower one another and address local challenges.

This year, #GivingTuesday falls on November 29, 2016.  HCHRA asks you to support our efforts to ensure that families throughout Hinds County have lights, electricity and warmth in a safe and stable home.

“We have thousands of families in Hinds County who live in poverty,” said Kenn Cockrell, HCHRA President & CEO.  “Whether the head of the household is working a low-paying job or living with a disability, it’s a challenge for those families throughout the year to be able to enjoy basic necessities like food, clothing, standard housing and reliable transportation that so many take for granted; but it’s especially tough during the holiday season when home energy costs may be higher and when, if at all possible, a family that is struggling financially wants to provide a little holiday cheer with food and gifts.”

Every holiday season, and throughout the year, HCHRA sees first-hand how families are left to choose between paying rent and utility bills or buying a gift for a child.  This shouldn’t be.  Give thanks for your ability to share gifts with your loved ones, friends and neighbors, and give to those who are not as fortunate as you.  Your gift will help HCHRA provide families in poverty with greater opportunities for a stable home.

Those who are interested in joining HCHRA’s #GivingTuesday initiative can visit hchra.org/community-partners/giving-opportunities.

About #GivingTuesday
#GivingTuesday is a movement, built by people around the world, to celebrate giving of all kinds.  It is celebrated on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.), Black Friday and Cyber Monday; this year it falls on November 29, 2016. This movement is the result of the collective power of a unique blend of partners—nonprofits large and small; businesses and corporations; schools and universities; civic campaigns in cities, states and regions; and families and individuals—to inspire people to take collaborative action to improve their local communities and contribute in countless ways to the causes they believe in. Everyone has something to give.

To learn more about #GivingTuesday participants and activities or to join the celebration of giving, please visit:

Website: www.givingtuesday.org

Shop on AmazonSmile and They Will Donate to HCHRA

#StartWithaSmile at smile.amazon.com/ch/64-0577821 for your holiday gifts and Amazon will make a donation to Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA).

November is officially the start of the holiday season and Cyber Monday is one of the busiest shopping days of the year. That means a lot of shopping for gifts, decorations, and a whole lot more.

Visit smile.amazon.com/ch/64-0577821 and shop for all of your holiday gifts.  At smile.amazon.com/ch/64-0577821, you’ll enjoy the same wide selection of products, low prices and convenient shopping features as on Amazon.com, while making a contribution to Hinds County Human Resource Agency.

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon.  The difference is when you and your family and friends shop on AmazonSmile (smile.amazon.com), the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases to Hinds County Human Resource Agency.

To start shopping, copy and paste the following link in your web browser:

If you’ve shopped on Amazon before, visit https://smile.amazon.com/ch/64-0577821 and log in with your usual sign-in info.  If you’re new to Amazon, create an account and begin shopping thousands of items at low prices, while making a contribution to Hinds County Human Resource Agency.

When you first visit AmazonSmile, you will be prompted to select a charitable organization.  In order to browse or shop at AmazonSmile, you must first select a charitable organization.  The easiest way to select HCHRA is to copy and paste https://smile.amazon.com/ch/64-0577821 in your web browser, or just click here.

Happy shopping!

Smile with holiday shopping


4-Year-Old Julius Jones Burial Donations Now Being Accepted

On Friday, October 28th, 4-year-old Julius Jones was struck by a vehicle and killed.  Julius was a preschool student at Mary C. Jones Head Start Center and had attended school just before the tragic accident.

Julius was very kind and joyful.  Everyone lucky enough to meet him, instantly felt the joy and love he so freely gave.  His family, friends, teachers, and the community are truly devastated by his death.  He leaves behind his parents and an older sister.

Please consider donating to help this family with the financial burden of burying Julius and to help create a financial safety net for his parents — neither of them has the luxury of paid time off as they mourn the loss of their 4-year-old son.

Persons interested in contributing to the family can click on the Donate button below to access our secure donation page via PayPal.  Be sure to write Julius Jones under “Add special instructions to the seller.” You do not need a PayPal account to donate, just a valid credit card.

HCHRA Hosts Its 22nd Annual Awards & Recognition Gala


Over 400 area residents, community and business leaders gathered at the Jackson Marriott Hotel on September 23, 2016, to celebrate Hinds County Human Resource Agency’s 22nd Annual Awards and Recognition Gala.

The annual gala brought supporters from across the state to celebrate individuals who are living out the mission of Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) to empower disadvantaged citizens to become self-reliant and realize their full potential and to acknowledge those who have given of their time and resources to make that mission possible.

The Bootstrap Award was presented to six individuals who, with HCHRA resources and great personal effort, overcame challenging life situations and achieved great accomplishments.

HCHRA also presented the following awards to individuals and organizations for their community service and Agency support: Medgar Evers Humanitarian Award – presented to BankPlus for its commitment to supporting low-income initiatives; J.B. Carr Community Service Award – presented to Hope House and Midtown Partners; Volunteers of the Year Award – presented to Alexis Harvey (Head Start Policy Council member), Shamsie Ruffin (Head Start Policy Council member), Keishawna Smith (Head Start Policy Council Chairman) and the Hinds County Human Resource Agency Advisory Committee; Agency Support Award – presented to the Hinds County Board of Supervisors and the Mary C. Jones Head Start Center staff (Ms. Almeta Roberts, Center Administrator); Bill Cooley Agency Development Award – presented to Angelique Rawls (Director of Communications and Development); Board of Directors Award – presented to Ann Burton (Chairman of the Board) and DeJohn Hampton (Board of Directors Development Committee Chairman); Cedric Morgan/Betsy Smith Team Leadership Award – presented to David Knight (Executive Vice President & COO) and Kathleen Williams-McGriggs (Senior VP, Administrative & Board Services); the President & CEO Award – presented to Dewayne Frederick (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services – Atlanta, Georgia) and Johnny Donaldson (President, BankPlus – Jackson).

Corporate partners recognized for their support included BankPlus, M3A Architecture, The Mississippi Link, Mississippi Group Marketing, Phelps Dunbar, Jackson Advocate, AT&T, Atmos Energy, C Spire, Entergy Mississippi, Hinds CAP Lions Club, Institute of Government at Jackson State University, Jackson Memorial Funeral Service, Mississippi Development Authority, Risk Management Partners, Shady Grove M.B. Church, Walker & Son, and Watkins Ward & Stafford.

“Hinds County Human Resource Agency has been serving the community for more than 39 years,” said Kenn Cockrell, HCHRA president and CEO.  “Because of a dedicated staff and strong community support, we have been able to improve the quality of life for thousands of Hinds County residents, including almost 2,000 children, daily.  The gala is our opportunity to celebrate those who work tirelessly and give so generously to help create positive change in our communities.”

Mr. Johnny Donaldson, president of BankPlus – Jackson, served as keynote speaker for the gala and delivered an inspiring message on the importance of faith, family, education and hard work in order to succeed against all odds.  Ms. Joy Redmond, weekday morning anchor for WLBT 3 On Your Side, served as emcee.  Entertainment was provided by world renowned saxophonist, Dr. Jessie Primer III.

Head Start students created centerpieces for each of the banquet tables.



Atmos Energy Payment Assistance Available on the Spot — Thursday, September 8, 2016

Share the Warmth_September 8 2016_Promo Flyer

Atmos Energy is announcing its “Fueling Our Communities” Day in partnership with Hinds County Human Resource Agency to assist those who have been disconnected or struggling to pay their natural gas bills, past due gas gills, deposits and services charges.

Atmos Energy and Hinds County Human Resource Agency are long-standing community partners who work together every day to “make a difference” — helping individuals and families who have a need and are struggling with paying their natural gas gills, and helping to improve safety and health by staying connected.

If you are an Atmos Energy residential customer and need assistance, come to the Metrocenter Mall Event Center on Thursday, September 8, 2016, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. to receive Atmos Energy payment assistance on the spot.  You must bring your account number and a copy of your last bill, if possible.  The bill must be in the applicant’s name, and you must have a valid I.D.  No appointment is necessary.  Funds will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Head Start Students Return to School on Friday

Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start looks forward to the return of its students on Friday, August 12, 2016.  After a much-deserved summer break, Head Start center administrators returned to work four weeks before the start of school to participate in meetings and training sessions to prepare them for a successful year.  Other center staff, including teachers, cooks, family services workers, custodians, drivers, and security guards, joined the center administrators on August 1st for pre-service training and spent an entire week going over federal and state-required mandates, classroom skills and teaching strategies for the upcoming year.  Staff also received training from certified experts on topics such as health and safety, serving children with disabilities, active supervision, responsive care through reflective supervision, positive disciplining, menu planning, goal setting with families, behavior management, quality teacher-child interaction, and family engagement.

“Hinds County Human Resource Agency places a great deal of emphasis on the training we provide to Head Start staff,” said Kenn Cockrell, president and chief executive officer of HCHRA.  “Our goal for pre-service training is to make sure that our staff fully understands what is expected of them, and to ensure that they are equipped with the knowledge and tools to give the students what they need to excel academically, socially and emotionally.”

The first day of school for all HCHRA Head Start and Early Head Start children is Friday, August 12, 2016.  Parents are encouraged to attend Parent Orientation and Open House on Thursday, August 11, 2016, from 10:00 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Head Start center at which their child is enrolled.

This school year marks the 40th year that HCHRA has operated Head Start.  According to Chelsea Luster, associate vice president for Head Start and early childhood programs, HCHRA has a total of 1834 slots to accommodate students in both the Head Start and Early Head Start programs in Hinds County.  Though school starts on August 12th, Head Start staff will continue to accept applications to fill a limited number of slots that remain open at specific locations, and families can be placed on the waiting list for enrollment at centers that have already been filled.  Priority placement will be given to families of children with disabilities, regardless of income.

If you have questions about Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start, you may contact the Division of Family and Community Services at (601) 923-3940 or click here for more information.

HCHRA Head Start Recruitment, Family Services & Job Fair Extravaganza and Fish Fry – Friday, June 17th

On Friday, June 17th, Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) will host a Head Start Recruitment, Family Services and Job Fair Extravaganza from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at our central office located at 258 Maddox Road in Jackson.  HCHRA will also host a fish fry from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

If you are interested in enrolling your child in Head Start, starting a new career, or receiving assistance with utility bills, transportation, education or child care assistance, come out to the HCHRA Extravaganza.

Parents of children who are at least 3 but not yet 5 by September 1st can complete an enrollment application for one of 16 Head Start centers in Hinds County.  Be sure to bring proof of income, Hinds County residency, child’s age and child’s Social Security number.  Children with disabilities or suspected disabilities will be given priority for enrollment regardless of income.  A complete list of Head Start sites and application requirements can be found on our website under the Head Start & Early Head Start tab.

As an additional service to our Head Start families, staff will be available to see if families qualify for utility assistance payments, education tuition, child care assistance, or a number of other services we can provide.  You must be a resident of Hinds County and meet income guidelines.  To apply, bring your current utility bills, proof of residence, a valid photo ID, Social Security cards and birth certificates for all household members (regardless of age), and proof of income.

There will also be a job fair from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  HCHRA is hiring in all areas and has positions available for teachers, social workers, management information, family services, security guards, quality assurance, cooks, bus drivers, facilities, custodians, personnel director, vice presidents and many more.  Anyone interested in employment should come by and apply for one of several positions.  Hiring managers will be on site.  For a complete list of job openings, visit the employment page on our website.

As part of the Extravaganza, HCHRA will also host a fish fry from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to support community programs.  Join us for lunch and support a great cause.  Fish plates are only $10 and will include catfish, spaghetti, coleslaw, dessert and a beverage.

Head Start Recruitment, Family Services and Job Fair Extravaganza
Friday, June 17th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Hinds County Human Resource Agency
258 Maddox Road
Jackson, Mississippi
HCHRA Extravaganza Flyer


Head Start Recruitment Fair with Disabilities Awareness – Saturday, May 14th at the Mississippi Children’s Museum

On Saturday, May 14th, Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start will host a Head Start Recruitment Fair with disability awareness.

If you have a child who is at least 3 years old but not yet 5 by September 1st, come out to the Mississippi Children’s Museum on Saturday, May 14th from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and join Hinds County Human Resource Agency for free admission to the museum, free food, and games.  Registration is from 11:00 a.m. to noon and is required for participation.

Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start staff will be available to answer questions about the Head Start program and provide information on the highly specialized services we offer for children with disabilities.  Parents who wish to enroll their children will receive on-site assistance with the application process for the 2016-2017 school year.

If you have a child with disabilities, we will help you understand your rights, the school’s responsibilities and how to insure the success of your child in school.

To apply to the Head Start program, parents should bring proof of child’s age, family income, residency, and child’s Social Security number.  Children with disabilities or suspected disabilities receive priority for enrollment regardless of family income.

For information, call Hinds County Human Resource Agency Project Head Start at 601-923-3940.

To begin the registration process, click here.

Recruitment Fair with Disability Awareness_POSTER_May 14, 2016

HCHRA Provides Drinking Water Lead Test Kits for Head Start Parents

At Hinds County Human Resource Agency, the health and safety of our Head Start children and families is very important to us.

In response to the City of Jackson reporting higher than normal levels of lead in the drinking water, Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) is taking every precaution possible to protect Head Start children from the exposure to lead that may be present in the water.  In an effort to assist our families, HCHRA has partnered with the Mississippi State Department of Health and has purchased lead testing kits for each family who has a child enrolled in a Head Start center located in the Jackson city limits, and for families at the Gertrude Ellis Head Start Center.

Lead testing kits will be available for pick up at the Head Start centers on Wednesday, April 27, 2016, and need to be returned no later than Monday, May 2, 2016. Along with the test kits, parents will be given a set of instructions on how to collect a water sample.  Once the samples are returned, HCHRA will submit them to the Mississippi Public Health Lab for testing.  In 2 to 4 weeks, results will be mailed directly to the homes of Head Start families.

As a reminder, parents are asked to continue taking safety precautions when using tap water for cooking and drinking while the City of Jackson makes the necessary changes to stabilize the pH levels in the water system.

If you are a Head Start parent and you have questions about test kits or safety precautions, please contact your center administrator and he/she will be happy to assist you.