Sokaogon Chippewa Community News

Family Services Welcomes the Community

By Richard D. Ackley, Jr.
Members of the Sokaogon Chippewa Family Services Department and Economic Support hosted its first community services informational gathering at the Mole Lake Conference Center on Wednesday, December 4th.
Carla Ruuskanen, the new Director of the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant, stated, “Today’s gathering is designed to introduce our community to our dedicated staff who are here to serve Sokaogon Chippewa Community members, and located at the Family Services and Economic Support Center. We wanted to give attendees a great opportunity to get to know us and what we do with the numerous grant-funded programs we offer. This gathering provides information about a host of programs that are available, and allows us to discuss the many and varied eligibility requirements, as well as what each program entails.”

Carla wants to be sure that everyone understands the purpose of this department. “There has been some recent misconceptions of what programs we are able to offer. It is our responsibility to follow the specific program guidelines, as laid out within our contract with the federal and state governments to ensure that we can continue to receive funding to be able to help our community.”

Carla shared a list of current programs that include Indian Child Welfare (ICW), Child Support, Family Services, Drug Prevention and Economic Support, which includes Badger Care, Child Care, Food Share, General Assistance and Temporary Assistance.

Other programs include Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Medicaid, Wisconsin Shares, Food Share Employment Training (FSET), Native Employment Works (NEW), Kinship Care, Victims of Crime Act, Brighter Days Community Services Team (CST) and the Home School Coordinator.

“In addition to job skills training, resume writing, basic life skills and budgeting classes, our goal is to help our Tribal Members improve their quality of living and achieve their goals to strengthen families and in turn strengthen our community,” Carla said.

For more information on the programs and staff, please call (715) 478-7600.