Human Services

The Human Services Department came into existence in 1989. It began as a combination of the counseling and drug prevention program, recreation and parks, facilities, and welfare. Although welfare responsibilities were transferred by statute to the county in 1998, the Human Services Department continues to provide emergency services and support to those in need in the Township.

Recreation programs, the Terner Gallery, pre-school play groups, the senior citizen center, school-aged child care, and counseling are all under the purview of Human Services. A network has been developed between the department, the police, public works, the school district, and community groups.

A full array of recreational alternatives for children, youth, and adults is provided. In addition, the department oversees some 500 acres of parkland, ballfields, a gym, and three meeting facilities. They also operate the municipal swimming pool and a nine-hole regulation golf course acquired in 2007 and opened in 2008.

On 2009, with the support of the Human Services Department, the Community Hope Fund, a non-profit organization, was established to raise funds to support efforts for youth-serving projects and those in need in the Township of Ocean and neighboring communities.

Although the county has responsibility for welfare, the Human Services department delivers meals-on-wheels and coordinates a senior transportation program. It also, in cooperation with the Community Hope Fund, manages a Thanksgiving food drive and a Christmas giving program for needy families.

Regionally, Human Services provides services funded either by clients or by various grants. These services include mental health counseling, drug and alcohol counseling, an intensive outpatient treatment program for youth, and a parent visitation and reunification program. Fees paid for these services offset the cost of the programs for residents.

The annual report is available on the department's website.