Family Support Services F.S.S.

What are Family Support Services (F.S.S.) Funds?

Funds that LCBDD makes available to Board-eligible children, adults and their families to acquire goods, services and supports that address the special needs of their family member with a disability. F.S.S. Funds are intended to be used to support families while nurturing partnerships between family members and other supportive people, including professionals who serve these individuals and their families. F.S.S. is meant to build on the unique strengths of each family, utilizing the resources in each family’s social network/home community and respecting the beliefs, values and structures of each family.

How does the F.S.S. Funds Program work?

Effective January 1, 2023:  The Mid-East Ohio Regional Council (MEORC) is the administrator for LCBDD’s F.S.S. Funds Program.

    1. Interested individuals/families must reach out to their Service Coordinator to request F.S.S. If they are eligible, their Service Coordinator will encourage them to contact MEORC’s F.S.S. Coordinator to continue the process.
    2. Approved applicants will have access to up to $600 of F.S.S. Funds per eligible individual.
      • If more than one family member would like to access F.S.S. Funds, they will need to communicate this to their Service Coordinator.
    3. If they are approved applicants will still need to contact MEORC to request to use their F.S.S. funds. They should not purchase any items until they hear back from MEORC’s FSS Coordinator with instructions. Typically, MEORC will purchase the item and have it delivered directly to the person or family.
      • If the request is unusual, involves respite, medical/therapy or specialist appointment mileage, individuals/families should be sure to talk to their Service Coordinator before they move forward. (Please see the “What about respite, or mileage for medical, therapy or specialist appointments?” section below for more information.)
      • MEORC will use the LCBDD Administrative Policy for Family Support Services to determine if the request is an approved use of F.S.S. Funding. Please note  there is a section within this policy for items that will not be approved/paid through the F.S.S. Funds program.
      • If you would like to review the LCBDD Administrative Policy for Family Support services, including the approved funding use list, please click here.

How does someone apply for F.S.S. Funds?

Once an individual/family has identified the need for F.S.S Funds, they should contact their Service Coordinator, who will determine if they are eligible.

    • Remember that the process starts over every year, so every year they will need to let their Service Coordinator know if they have a need for F.S.S.
    • All F.S.S. requests and documents must be submitted by the end of November each year to allow for year-end processing and closure.
    • If a person is determined not to be eligible for F.S.S., their Service Coordinator will contact them to discuss other options.

What about Respite or Mileage for medical, therapy, or specialist appointments?

Service Verification Forms for Respite and Mileage Forms for medical, therapy, and specialist appointment mileage can be obtained from and submitted to MEORC. Forms are available on MEORC’s website, please click here to access MEORC’s website. As these services are reimbursement based, MEORC processes items in the middle of the month (usually close to the 15th) and the end of the month (usually close to the 31st). Please note that receipts/invoices/forms/paperwork needs to be received by MEORC no later than the end of January of the following year (for example 2022 receipts/invoices/forms/paperwork must be turned in by the end of January 2023).

How long does it take for items to be ordered?

Upon receipt of a “complete” order request, items are ordered within three days.

What steps increase the likelihood that an order will be considered “complete”?

  • Including the first and last name of the LCBDD F.S.S. Funds Program eligible individual
  • Including link(s) to the item being requested
  • Including picture(s) of an item being requested
  • Including the address that the item(s) is to be shipped to
  • Including specifics for the item such as size, color, pattern, make, model, and fit (when applicable)

Is notification provided when items are ordered?

MEORC provides notification once the item has been ordered and they will provide an estimated received by or ship by date when it is provided by the merchant (not all merchants provide a received by or ship by date at the time of order).

This is a regularly used item, is there something special to know about these items?

As items will be shipped and shipping times can be subject to a delay, please make replenishment requests in advance of needing items (such as diapers) to ensure your current supply extends until a new supply is received.

Why might MEORC hold a request?

If the request(s) MEORC receives are in excess of the F.S.S. Program funds available to the individual. For example, if MEORC is asked to order a $500 item from Amazon and at the same time asked to pay $125 for camp registration, these two items exceed the $600 fund availability. MEORC would place the requests on hold, reach out to the individual, and work with the individual on how to proceed as both requests cannot be fully completed; MEORC will not make the decision automatically.

What if a request is denied?

MEORC will notify LCBDD of the denial and denial reasons and the person’s Service Coordinator will reach out to them directly, to send them a copy of the denial and the appeal paperwork.

Who can an individual reach out to if they have questions?

Since the F.S.S. Funds program is administered by MEORC, individuals would be best served by reaching out to MEORC as they will be able to provide the most well rounded support.

While corresponding with MEORC, individuals should be sure to include the first name and last name of the person supported by LCBDD and indicate that the person is supported by LCBDD. Correspondence with MEORC, outside of application requests, should be addressed within three days.

The MEORC F.S.S. Coordinator can be reached via the following methods:

      • Phone- (740) 397-4733
      • Attention: Andrea Poland.
      • Fax- (740) 397- 2206
      • Address- MEORC Family Support Services, Attention Andrea Poland, 1 Avalon Road, Mt. Vernon, Ohio 43050