Funding for our Family Sexual Abuse Treatment (FSAT) program has been an unsure thing year to year. Since the program has been funded primarily through Dane County Human Services for more years than I can remember, we have had to advocate persistently to keep funding in the County budget. While it is seen as a valuable service, it was not considered to be as important as other services in the community. And so, when other services needed more money, this was one of the first places they looked to make a cut.
Chuck Stonecipher, the Program Director for the past 12 years, has announced his retirement at the end of April 2015. After a mutual and frank discussion with Dane County Human Services, it was decided that this program will also end April 30, 2015. At that time, Dane County social workers will be responsible for pulling together treatment teams when such teams are called for by the large number of service providers and/or the complexity of a case. We truly hope that the collaborative nature of treatment teams will continue, so that treatment providers will be able to work together toward common goals that move a family forward to a place of health and stability.
I would like to thank Chuck for all of his efforts over the past many years. His calm competence and wisdom have been so beneficial for the families served by these teams, as well as for the treatment providers. I can speak for our Oasis staff, Chuck, in saying that your guidance and perspective have been key in enabling them to provide the best services possible.
The agency marches on stronger than ever. These program closures in no way reflect on the remaining services or the health of the agency. The Oasis and Parent Stressline programs are in a solid position to provide their services for many years to come. We are also looking at ways to grow over the next few years. We stand committed to our mission to support families and victims of abuse. We are excited to move forward and see in what new ways we are able to serve the people of Dane County.