The Bureau for Family Assistance partners with other DHHR bureaus, state agencies, and community organizations to help our citizens find the assistance they need through specialized programs and initiatives, like those listed below.
West Virginia 211 (WV 211)
In many states, dialing “211” provides individuals and families in need with a shortcut through what can be a bewildering maze of health and human service agency phone numbers. By simply dialing 211, those in need of assistance can be referred, and sometimes connected, to appropriate agencies and community organizations.
Dialing 211 helps direct callers to services for, among others, the elderly, the disabled, those who do not speak English, those with a personal crisis, those with limited reading skills, and those who are new to their communities. West Virginia 211 can be accessed in several different ways and is operational 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To contact someone at WV 211 you can dial 2-1-1 or text your zip code to 898-211. You can also access online chat through their website at http://www.wv211.org/.
West Virginia 211 keeps an accurate and comprehensive database that you can use to find health and human services to meet your needs. The database allows you to browse hundreds of health and human services online, learn about specific programs, intake requirements, eligibility, operation hours and more. The database also has information on disaster related services. The database can be located by clicking here.
This program is a collaborative project of the United Ways of West Virginia.
How 211 Works
211 works a bit like 911. Calls to 211 are routed by the local telephone company to a local or regional calling center. The 211 center’s referral specialists receive requests from callers, access databases of resources available from private and public health and human service agencies, match the callers’ needs to available resources, and link or refer them directly to an agency or organization that can help.
Types of Referrals Offered by 211
Basic Human Needs Resources – including food and clothing banks, shelters, rent assistance, and utility assistance.
Physical and Mental Health Resources – including health insurance programs, Medicaid and Medicare, maternal health resources, health insurance programs for children, medical information lines, crisis intervention services, support groups, counseling, and drug and alcohol intervention and rehabilitation.
Work Support – including financial assistance, job training, transportation assistance and education programs.
Access to Services in Non-English Languages – including language translation and interpretation services to help non-English-speaking people find public resources (foreign language services vary by location).
Support for Older Americans and Persons with Disabilities – including adult day care, community meals, respite care, home health care, transportation and homemaker services.
Children, Youth and Family Support – including child care, after-school programs, educational programs for low-income families, family resource centers, summer camps and recreation programs, mentoring, tutoring and protective services.
Suicide Prevention – referral to suicide prevention help organizations. Callers can also dial the new Suicide & Crisis Lifeline three-digit number, 988.
The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, formerly known as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, is operated in West Virginia by First Choice Services and funded by the Bureau for Behavioral Health. The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline serves as a universal entry point so that no matter where you live, you can reach a trained crisis counselor who can help. With options for using 988 through voice calls, chat, and text, individuals can receive the help they need in the way that is most convenient and comfortable for them. Funding for the transition was awarded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). To learn more about 988, visit the SAMHSA website.
Family Support Centers
West Virginia's Family Support Centers (formerly Family Resource Centers or FRCs) are warm and welcoming places in the community where any family member with children up to age 18 or pregnant families can go, not only in times of need, but as a regular part of day-to-day life. Family Support Centers (FSC) offer parent education classes, child development activities, parent-to-parent support groups, after school and academic enrichment, General Educational Development (GED) and literacy instruction, health information, and referrals to programs, activities and services in the community. Each FSC's specific services are designed in accordance with the needs of the community. FSC services are voluntary and available to all interested families.
Click here for a map of FSCs in your county and here for the 2022/2023 West Virginia FSC Directory.
Additional Family Resources
To find a list of available social services in your county, visit http://wvfrn.org/counties/ and click on your county. Family Resource Network community resource guides are available at each county link. You can download a PDF copy of the contact person for the Family Resource Center in each county. To view the Family Resource Center county list and map, visit http://wvfrn.org/counties/. To learn more about early childhood home visitation programs please visit the In Home Family Education Programs website at http://www.inhomefamilyed.com/.
The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources provides homeless services to West Virginia citizens when such services are appropriate and available under the circumstances. These services include:
- assessing an applicant's claim for homeless services
- providing emergency food, shelter and medical care to a homeless individual
- developing an individual service plan defining goals and services that help the homeless individual
- working with state and community organizations in developing and providing services that are reasonable and cost effective.
Substance Misuse Service Mapping
The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Office of Drug Control Policy has developed an interactive map of West Virginia's treatment and recovery resources. This tool allows residents to search resources by county, program, type and gender, and by the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) levels of care. Click here to access the map.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. SAMSHA's goals are to reduce the impact of substance misuse and mental illness on America's communities and to provide leadership and resources to advance mental and substance misuse disorder prevention, treatment and recovery services.
SAMSHA has developed an interactive map that will allow the user to find treatment facilities and programs in the United States and U.S. Territories for mental health and substance misuse disorders. To access the SAMSHA Find Treatment Locator, click here.
Child Abuse Prevention Programs
To learn about child abuse prevention programs in West Virginia, visit the Prevent Child Abuse West Virginia website by Team for West Virginia. This site also contains information about Strengthening Families. The Bureau for Social Services works closely with DHHR's Office of Maternal Child and Family Health on the Maternal Infant Early Childhood Program (MIECHV) designated by the Governor as the agency to receive the Affordable Care Act home visitation dollars. Circle of Parents - a national network of parent-led, self help groups where parents and caregivers share ideas, celebrate successes, and address the challenges surrounding parenting. Partners in Prevention - a model based on the belief that child well-being hinges on the capacity of local communities to support families and protect children.
West Virginia Children's Trust Fund
The West Virginia Children's Trust Fund (CTF) raises money for innovative programs in communities all over the state. Please visit the CTF website to learn more about making donations.
Domestic Violence NATIONAL HOTLINE: 1-800-799-SAFE
In 1989 the legislature established the Family Protection Services Board to assure programs working towards the elimination of domestic violence are adequately funded and provide quality services to victims.
WIC (Women, Infants and Children)
The mission of the West Virginia WIC program is to improve the health of women, infants, and children in West Virginia by providing quality nutrition and breastfeeding counseling and education, as well as health monitoring and nutritious foods. For more information, visit the WIC website
Help Me Grow
Help Me Grow is a FREE referral service that connects families with critical developmental resources for their children birth through five years. The goal of Help Me Grow is to successfully identify children at risk and link them to the help they need. For more information, visit the Help Me Grow West Virginia website
WV Birth to Three
WV Birth to Three partners with families and caregivers to build upon their strengths by offering coordination, supports, and resources to enhance children's learning and development. For more information, visit the WV Birth to Three website
WV Head Start and Early Head Start Programs
West Virginia Head Start provides children with essential educational resources, including school readiness, so that every child is awarded an opportunity to learn. WVHS programs help parents grow as individuals, professionally and within their families, through training and leadership opportunities. Head Start offers these services with the ultimate goal of providing the opportunity for success to each participating family. For more information, visit the WVHS Association website
The WVU Extension Services is West Virginia's local connection to timely, researched based knowledge. For more information, visit the WVU Extension website
TEAM for West Virginia Children
TEAM for West Virginia Children is a non-profit organization whose mission is to work with communities and families to promote and advance the well-being of children, making their needs and healthy development a priority. For more information, visit the TEAM for West Virginia Children website
WV Statewide Afterschool Network
The WVSAN works to sustain a statewide partnership to raise awareness of the importance of accessibility of high-quality afterschool and summer learning programs for all school age children, share criteria of effective programs and best practices among providers and the public and promote the sustainability of such programs throughout the state. For more information, visit the WV Statewide Afterschool Network website
Child Support Enforcement
The Bureau for Child Support Enforcement establishes paternity (a legal determination of the father of the child) and support and enforces support from a child's parent. The Bureau also enforces court orders for spousal support or alimony. For more information, visit the BCSE website
WV Special Education
The office of Special Education and Student Support is responsible for improving results for children and youth with exceptionalities, primarily through leadership and financial support to local education agencies and for the administration of the federal individuals with Disabilities in Education Improvement Act of 2004. For more information, visit the WV Special Education website
West Virginia Pre-K Standards Resource Booklet
Click here to download a copy of the West Virginia Pre-K Standards Resource Booklet.
Early Care Share West Virginia
Early Care Share WV is a free resource designed to share information, cost savings, and management resources to help early childhood programs, professionals and students access up-to-date state-specific and national information. The site provides access to forms, handbooks, policies, cost savings, classroom material templates and more. Membership is entirely free. Visit www.earlycaresharewv.org to request a log-in account.
West Virginia Infant/Toddler Specialists Network
The Infant/Toddler Specialist Network provides technical assistance and professional development opportunities to caregivers of infants and toddlers. The twelve specialists across the state assist caregivers in providing West Virginia’s youngest children supportive, nurturing environments. Their mission is to help these caregivers foster responsive relationships with both children and their families, which will support children in achieving optimal developmental outcomes. For more information, visit www.wvit.org.
WV Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Designation
The WV Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Designation (BFCCD) Initiative is a voluntary program to support families in their choice of infant feeding plans. If you would like more information, please contact your local Child Care Resource and Referral agency’s Infant/Toddler Specialist, or visit the Infant/Toddler Specialist Network website at www.wvit.org and click on the BFCCD tab.
WV Early Childhood Training Connections and Resources
WV Early Childhood Training Connections and Resources (WVECTCR) is a statewide program designed to provide professional development opportunities for the early care and education community. Through an extensive network of information, training and technical assistance, resources, and collaboration, WVECTCR strives to improve the quality of early education services for young children and their families. For more information, visit www.wvearlychildhood.org.
Resource and Referral Professional Development Teams
Six Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agencies across West Virginia employ a professional development team to provide training and technical assistance to early childhood programs. See the Resource and Referral Agency Area Map to contact your local CCR&R agency.
Child Care Tiered Reimbursement
The Child Care Tiered Reimbursement System is a quality initiative that offers higher subsidy payments to child care programs that demonstrate they meet higher standards of care. Programs that are licensed as a center or facility and registered family child care homes are eligible to apply for a higher quality tier level. West Virginia currently has three quality tier levels: Tier I reimbursement rates for licensed or registered programs, Tier II rates for programs that meet a state-specific set of quality standards, and Tier III reimbursement rates for programs that are accredited by an approved accrediting agency. For more information, contact Elizabeth Teel at Elizabeth.D.Teel@wv.gov.
West Virginia passed legislation in 2002 requiring the state to expand access to preschool education programs in order to make prekindergarten available to all 4-year-olds in the state by the 2012-2013 school year. West Virginia's preschool program, called West Virginia Universal Pre-K, is available in all 55 counties. West Virginia requires that a minimum of half of the programs operate in collaborative settings with private prekindergarten, child care centers, or Head Start programs in order to facilitate expansion of the program. For more information, visit the WVDE Office of Early Learning website.