USCB Human Services Program and the SC Department of Social Services Partner for more Adoptive and Foster Families

USCB Human Services Program and the SC Department of Social Services Partner for more Adoptive and Foster Families

August 2, 2016

BLUFFTON, S.C. – The USCB Human Services Program (HMSV) is excited about its new project with the South Carolina Department of Social Services (SCDSS) as they seek to address a critical shortage in the number of available foster and adoptive families. A few details about the partnership:

  • SCDSS approved USCB’s proposal to serve Region III, which includes the localities of Allendale, Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Hampton and Jasper;
  • The project includes community outreach and awareness, coordination with Human Services programs and agencies, as well as development and facilitation of at least 14 in-person recruitment and information sessions in Region III;
  • The total award amount is $135,850, which includes hiring two Community Outreach Coordinators from the Human Services Program; and,
  • The agreement period is January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2016.

Two Community Outreach Coordinators were hired in February – Shaniece Gathers (HMSV c/o ’16) and Kacie Weatherhead (Senior, HMSV program). After an initial planning process, in-person events began in April, followed by a strong May campaign in observance of National Foster Care Awareness Month. Recruitment events are conducted by the HMSV coordinators and SCDSS local and regional staff members, who make up the Community Outreach and Recruitment Team.

“It is exciting and rewarding to help find high-quality homes for children in need right here in our region and provide program majors this professional development opportunity at the same time,” said Dr. Najmah Thomas, project manager and USCB professor.

So far, team members have hosted 8 in-person recruitment events across the region, distributing materials and information to over 250 individuals. Several other recruitment dates are planned at events in the community for the remainder of 2016, including the Youth Enrichment Day at Peoples Park, Scotia (July 30th) Charleston Riverdogs Baseball Game (August 5th), and the Gullah/Geechee International Movement and Music Festival the Charleston Maritime Center (August 6th). The public is welcome and encouraged to attend any of the events to receive information about Foster Care and Adoption in Region III.

For more information contact:
Najmah Thomas, PhD – Project Manager

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Interested in becoming a Foster or Adoptive Family? Please contact Heartfelt Calling at 888-828-3555. More details can also be found at the following websites: ;


Located in the heart of the Carolina Sea Islands, the University of South Carolina Beaufort (USCB) is a baccalaureate member of the USC system, serving the southeast coast of South Carolina and Georgia. Since 2002, USCB has tripled its academic degree programs, doubled its FTE enrollment, opened its first on-campus housing (now serving more than 750), joined the NAIA Sun Conference, and fielded conference and national award-winning Sand Shark athletes in nine sports. The university’s two campuses serve a diverse student body of 1,980 students. The Hilton Head Gateway campus in Bluffton, SC, offers cutting-edge Computational Science and Nursing laboratories, and a broad range of academic degree programs. The Historic Beaufort campus, located on Beaufort’s downtown waterfront, houses an innovative baccalaureate Studio Art program in close proximity to Beaufort’s many art galleries. The University of South Carolina Beaufort offers students an exceptional place to learn and live in an environment focused on growth, preservation and opportunity.

For more information, contact Kerry Jarvis, public information coordinator, at 843-208-8030 or