Mississippi Christian Family Services, Inc. was founded in 1975 when the community of Rolling Fork, MS and the surrounding towns determined
there was a need for services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). The lack of availability of day programs and schools for those with IDD created a hardship on families trying to work, struggling to make ends meet. In addition, some of the individuals were living in deplorable conditions, often neglected, undernourished, and abused. Elvinah Spoelstra, along with the Chrisıan Reformed World Relief Committee (CRWRC), worked diligently to establish the ministry through land/building acquisition and funding.
What does MCFS do?
MCFS’ goal is to teach individuals with IDD the skills needed to live as independently as possible. For some, that means living on their own and
taking care of themselves. For others, it means living semi-independently and taking care of themselves with minimal assistance. For others, it means living with caregivers, but doing the most they can for themselves. Whatever level of care is needed, MCFS’ job is to ensure they reach their full potential in life.
Current Programs Offered:
- Work Acıvity Services (WAS) is a program designed to teach individuals skills needed for employment of their choice. The program is individualized based on the needs and desires of the individual served. The goal of the program is for the individuals to transition into the Supported Employment
Services Program (SES) once the appropriate skills have been taught.
- Supported Employment Services (SES) is a program that provides on-the-job training for those individuals with gainful employment in the community. The individual is assigned a job coach that transports to and from work sites and provides support as needed.
- Case Management (CM) provides social services for the individuals served. The purpose of the Case Manager is to advocate on behalf of the individuals and families. Within Case Management Services, MCFS offers a Money Management Program that assists individuals with budgeıng and managing their money.
- Supervised Living/Group Home provides a family style living arrangement for individuals that are not capable of living independently. MCFS has two homes— one for men and one for women.
- Day Services/Habilitation is a day program for individuals who cannotwork or do not desire to work. The goal of the Day Services/Habilitaıon
program is to train individuals in the skills needed for daily living.
Challenges—past and present:
- The largest obstacle and challenge that MCFS has faced throughout the years is funding. Currently, MCFS operates through grant funding from
Mississippi Department of Mental Health, Medicaid, and supporter donaıons. As with any government funding, the DMH/Medicaid money is subject to decrease or even elimination at any ıme without noıficaıon. Also, the instability of the United States economy has caused supporter donaıons to decline. Therefore, MCFS operates on faith and through God’s blessings. We give Him all the honor and glory.
- Another obstacle that MCFS faces currently is a decrease in enrollment. MCFS is currently operaıng with less than 100 individuals—maximum capacity is 200. Therefore, the agency goal is to increase the numbers over the next five years. Please pray specifically for that to happen. The
community is inundated with IDD individuals that would benefit from MCFS’ programs, but parents/caregivers are reluctant for fear of losing
Victories—small and large:
- Throughout the years, God has showered His blessings upon the agency. First of all, MCFS’ longevity is almost unheard of in the area. Because of
the economy, businesses are usually short-lived. However, MCFS has been going strong for over 40 years. One of the greatest blessings that
the agency has received lately is to build a rapport with the MS DMH and Medicaid to begin several additional programs for the individuals served.