The Office of Human Services Emergency Preparedness and Response (OHSEPR) promotes the resilience of vulnerable individuals, children, families and communities impacted by disasters and public health emergencies, and provides expertise in human services preparedness, response and recovery through policy, planning, operations and partnerships.
Vision: A nation of children, individuals, families, and communities that can recover rapidly and equitably from a disaster or public health emergency
Preparedness: OHSEPR and the Immediate Office of the Regional Administrators collaborate with ACF-supported human services programs and grantees to ensure continuity of service delivery, improve outcomes for client populations, and meet surge requirements for new disaster-caused needs. OHSEPR and the Immediate Office of the Regional Administrators build ACF’s internal capacity to support States, grantees, local, Tribal, and Territorial governments by assisting ACF programs to develop emergency plans and provide technical assistance and training.
Response: OHSEPR supports States, grantees, local, Tribal, and Territorial governments impacted by a disaster to address the human services needs of affected children, individuals, families, and communities. OHSEPR develops situational awareness on impacts to ACF-supported programs, provides technical assistance on ACF program disaster waivers and flexibilities, and provides deployable liaison officers and subject matter experts on human services and the needs of children and youth.
Recovery: Effective delivery of human services is critical to a recovery that engages the whole community. As communities recover from disasters, pre-disaster human services needs are often intensified, and new human services needs emerge. Within ACF, OHSEPR, Regional and Program Offices support the Health and Social Services Recovery Support Function by providing subject matter expertise on human services needs in the community, technical assistance about ACF programs, and supporting state and local task forces focused on the needs of children and youth. When tasked by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), OHSEPR deploys the ACF Immediate Disaster Case Management Program, providing case managers to help individuals and families with disaster-caused unmet needs with referrals to social services and local resources to assist in their recovery.