​​Family Self-Sufficiency staff encourage, educate and empower households to attain stability and economic self-sufficiency. FSS focuses on the prevention of homelessness, housing households experiencing homelessness and assisting low wage earners to increase their household income. Services include financial assistance and case management.

LIFT Program

Members of the Bonita Springs Elks Lodge #2753 joined the national campaign and the LIFT program to end homelessness among Veterans. Using donations, volunteers purchased new bedding, pillows and towels to distribute to approximately 20 homeless Veterans that will be sleeping in a bed for the first time in their new home. Elk members continued their pledge with gift cards for Christmas dinner and household supplies for approximately 30 households that have been recently housed.

LEE Medical Office Skills Program

The LEE Program is designed to rapidly produce a substantial increase in work earnings for low-income working individuals by teaching the skills needed to work at the front desk od a doctor's office, a medical facility, or in medical records.

The LEE Program made a few programmatic changes to better use technology to improve program accessibility and use staff time more efficiently. Using Event Brite applicants register to attend one of the orientations instead of staff conducting approximately 500 individual telephone interviews. Eligible candidates are now required to attend TABE preparation and study skills training to improve their chances of program success.

SOAR Program

Lee County Department of Human Services is SOARING high. We have devoted a part-time staff person to work on Supplemental Security Income/Social Security Disability Insurance (SSI/SSDI) Outreach, Assistance, and Recovery (SOAR) applications. Five applications have been submitted to the Social Security Administration and all have been approved with no appeals required. The average time for approval is 66 days. The most recent claim was decided in 26 days. With just 5 approvals, approximately $50,000 additional annual income is brought into our local economy. The Family Self Sufficiency program provides most of the referrals to SOAR. We also accept referrals from local agencies and hope to assist many more applicants.

SOAR Works 

Intake and Homeless Prevention

Intake conducted 10,089 screenings for emergency assistance to prevent homelessness. This represents 1,438 fewer requests than the prior year which is indicative of the strengthening economy.

Get complete information about programs and services provided by the Family Self-Sufficiency unit.