Utility Payment Assistance Available on the Spot – Saturday, March 25th

Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) will host its 2017 LIHEAP (Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program) Awareness Day on Saturday, March 25, 2017, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Black’s Chapel Church located at 3425 Robinson Street in Jackson, Mississippi.  HCHRA case managers will provide LIHEAP assistance as well as Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) funds on the spot.

LIHEAP provides financial assistance to eligible households to help pay the cost of home energy bills and other energy related services.  CSBG provides funds to help alleviate the causes and conditions of poverty in communities.  

Who is eligible?
You must be at least 18 years of age or an emancipated minor, live in Hinds County, and meet income guidelines.

How do I apply?
Come to the LIHEAP Awareness Day on March 25th and receive onsite assistance.  No appointment is necessary on this day.  If you have never received assistance, go to the Virtual ROMA website at https://virtualroma.mdhs.ms.gov to complete the online application.  If you do not have access to a computer, you may complete the Virtual ROMA application onsite March 25th.

To receive LIHEAP or CSBG assistance, bring ALL of the following documents:

  • Proof of all income for all adults in the household, including pay stubs for the past 30 days, SSI, award letter from Social Security Administration, unemployment, pension/ retirement statements, and verification of child support, if applicable.
  • If unemployed, you must provide documentation to show WIN Job Center registration within the last 30 days.
  • If you have children under 18 but do not receive child support, you must provide verification of your cooperation with the Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS).
  • Social Security Cards for all household members
  • Picture IDs for all adults in the household
  • Birth Certificates for all household members
  • Guardianship documentation for any child in your household that is not your biological child
  • Current utility bills

NOTE: Black’s Chapel Church does not operate the LIHEAP or CSBG programs. The church is the site for the March 25th LIHEAP Awareness Day event.  Funds are administered by Hinds County Human Resource Agency in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Mississippi Department of Human Services.  Church staff is not able to provide assistance.  If you need additional information about LIHEAP or CSBG, please visit Our Programs page here on our website.




HCHRA Managers Complete Public Management and Leadership Program

HCHRA managers Chelsea Luster (2nd from left) and David Knight (far right), along with their cohorts, successfully completed their requirements in the JSU Institute of Government’s Public Management and Leadership Certificate Program in December.

Hinds County Human Resource Agency is pleased to recognize Mr. David Knight, executive vice president and chief operating officer, and Ms. Chelsea Luster, associate vice president for Head Start and Early Childhood Programs, for successfully completing the Public Management and Leadership Program at Jackson State University’s Institute of Government (IOG) this past December.

Jackson State University’s IOG understands that the success of an organization is directly tied to the “readiness” of middle management and lower-level supervisors.  Based upon research and observations that suggest there is an under-readiness within middle and lower-level administrative personnel, the IOG offers the Public Management and Leadership Program designed specifically for managers with a critical focus on understanding government finance and budgeting; human resource management; policy development, implementation, accountability and evaluation; government structure, function and operation; ethics and legal frameworks of public service organizations; conflict resolution; effective supervision and leadership; and general public management issues.

“The successful operations of Hinds County Human Resource Agency depend heavily upon the core subject areas taught in the PML Program,” said Kenn Cockrell, President and CEO of HCHRA.  “We are pleased to have two of our top managers complete the program and bring such valuable and practical knowledge from the program to our agency.”

State employees who complete JSU’s Institute of Government’s Public Management and Leadership Certificate Program will qualify for a 3 percent salary increase based on a recent declaration by the Mississippi Personnel Board that designates Jackson State’s 16-week skills-building course as an “educational benchmark.”

“This is good for JSU,” said Dr. Otha Burton, JSU’s executive director of IOG.  He explained that the program is a three-month, non-academic intensive program involving 45 contact hours of development with notable individuals serving as faculty members.  These elite instructors from various sectors of government aim to assist employees in doing their jobs more effectively.

IOG’s 2016 fall cohorts successfully completed the PML program December 14th after hitting a new benchmark requiring them to associate each of their three-week subjects with personal job duties and responsibilities. This was JSU’s third PML session, and certificates were awarded at JSU’s 101 Downtown Campus.

To date, 27 mid-level managers have earned their qualifications. These employees are from city, county and state governments, public nonprofit organizations, and university staff.

PML sessions are offered each spring and fall.  The 2017 spring session begins January 24.  Applicants for admission and selection are eligible if they are currently employed in a government or public/nonprofit agency in a middle management or lower-level administrative position, or are aspiring to move into such positions.

For more information on the Public Management and Leadership Certificate Program, visit www.jsums.edu/instituteofgovernment or call 601-979-2339.

Instructors and guests gather to acknowledge and celebrate JSU’s third class of cohorts in IOG’s management and leadership program.

(Photos by Charles A. Smith/JSU)

HCHRA Hosts Its 2016 Employee Appreciation Luncheon

Hinds County Human Resource Agency (HCHRA) hosts a luncheon each year to honor current employees who have exhibited unparalleled commitment to HCHRA. The 2016 event was held on Tuesday, November 22nd at the Jackson Convention Complex and honored 11 employees for over 280 years of service (combined).

Staff being honored at the event were: Artessa Jenkins, Ellis Johnson, and Demetra Stokes for 15 years of service each; Gloria Brown for 20 years of service; Patricia Edwards, Lisa Hemphill, and Mary Williams for 25 years of service each; Patsie Jones and Jacqueline Laury for 30 years of service each; and Al Junior and Gloria Bailey Chambers for 40 years of service each. Their commitment to the well-being of Hinds County residents and customers of HCHRA is admirable and should be celebrated by all.

The highlight of the event was the presentation of the “Employees of the Year” awards. These awards are presented annually for multiple departments, to employees who continually exemplify the Agency’s mission, and serve as true ambassadors. The recipients of these awards were nominated by their peers from their respective areas. They include:

  • Head Start Administrative Staff of the Year – Twana Mallard
  • Center Administrator of the Year – Almeta Roberts
  • Children’s Services Education Staff of the Year – Lisa Hemphill
  • Children’s Services Education Staff of the Year – Rosalena McClendon
  • Children’s Services Education Staff of the Year – Sonja Dishmon-Coleman
  • Children’s Services Education Staff of the Year – Keyanna Levison
  • Children’s Services Education Staff of the Year – Helen Cavett
  • Children’s Services Nutrition Staff of the Year – Phyllis Taylor
  • Head Start Transportation Staff of the Year – Frank Williams
  • Family and Community Services Staff of the Year – Kathy Sheriff
  • Head Start Facilities and Field Services Staff of the Year – Jerry Fields
  • Department of Community Programs Administrative Staff of the Year – Ethel Minnifield
  • Department of Community Programs Staff of the Year – Carol Wells
  • HCHRA Administrative Staff of the Year – Carolyn Upkins
  • HCHRA Spirit of Community Service Award – Vickie Johnson
  • HCHRA Cheerleader Award – Susan Chandler

“HCHRA congratulates each awardee and commends the employees and their families on their dedication to our mission. We have a good group of people working together for the greater good of many others. The enjoyment of sharing a meal together right before the Thanksgiving holiday is one of the ways we like to show our appreciation for their good works,” said Kenn Cockrell, President & CEO.

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.