Social services departments at the city, county and state levels work to assist people in need. Their services include the entire range of government-distributed benefits from employment training and housing assistance to health care services and nutritional programs for children and single mothers. Social services departments and organizations screen applicants and manage programs including welfare, housing assistance, health care, and supplemental education programs.
Some social services organizations focus solely on a single area of assistance such as soup kitchens, homeless shelters, teen pregnancy counseling, domestic abuse programs or elder care. Other departments have a broader focus, such as providing educational assistance to low-income children or anti-recidivism programs for ex-offenders who are re-entering society after incarceration.