Following welfare reform implementation, human service agencies are transforming themselves as they change their function from determining eligibility to enhancing employability. Most new programs are removing barriers to work force participation and facilitating self-sufficiency, while most community partnerships are providing a variety of support services. Administratively, human service agencies are incorporating private-sector organizational development functions, merging with other agencies, blending funding streams, and linking adult and child welfare services. This paper highlights innovative programs and practices emerging from welfare reform implementation, examines cross-cutting themes within a social development framework, and concludes with a discussion of challenges and lessons learned in the change process.
October 11, 2008