Report: One Million Riverside County Residents Accessed Health, Human Services in 20/21; DPSS director says pandemic reinforced partnerships and mission to serve in an extraordinary time

RIVERSIDE COUNTY — While the global pandemic upended lives and disrupted economies, the Department of Public Social Services (DPSS) provided one million Riverside County residents with access to health, housing, and human services, according to a 20/21 annual report released this week.

“The stories of resiliency, restoration and courage in this report are portraits of real people and what we can accomplish together,” said Sayori Baldwin, assistant county executive officer and director of Riverside County DPSS, which serves the nation’s tenth most-populous county.

The new report highlights the role California’s biggest anti-hunger program, CalFresh plays in meeting the nutritional needs of local low-income children and adults. Formerly called ‘food stamps,’ the CalFresh program also generates more than $1 billion in annual economic activity for Riverside County grocers, farmers markets and eateries.

As one of California’s ‘grayest’ counties, the report offers insight into how Adult Services and partners are positioning Riverside County to meet the needs of its aging and elderly populations. The report introduces seniors like Virginia, an octogenarian, veteran, and retired teacher who was on the verge of losing her home when she found help through Adult Services and Office on Aging.

The 60-page report also introduces local resource (foster) families, public and community partners who collaborate with Children’s Services to create the best outcomes and experiences for children in care. Special segments spotlight collaboratives such as the Quality Parenting Initiative, and volunteers in the courts who mentor some of the county’s most at-risk foster youth to graduation and brighter futures.

“We believe in the power and importance of partnerships to accomplish our mission,” Baldwin said. “In the year ahead, we will maintain our focus on prevention and early intervention, reducing barriers and increasing access to resources that strengthen the health, independence, and wellbeing of all communities and individuals in Riverside County.”

The public can read the 20/21 annual report by clicking here.

Photo caption above: This is Neveah Hall who graduated high school with help from the Project Graduate program, which is highlighted in the annual report.


Image Sources

  • Nevaeh Hall: DPSS