It's been nearly two years since the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) has been able to work out of its office in Lake Charles. Like so many residential homes and businesses here in SWLA the DCFS building was heavily damaged by Hurricane Laura and Delta. Now the wait is over and the local was able to mark the occasion recently with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. As, DCFS Assistant Secretary for Family Support Shauana Howard, told KPLC "It's been a long time coming."

The Lake Charles location is at 3519 Patrick Street and hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, for more info about services call (888) 524-3578. Howard and her co-workers are thankful to finally have a new workspace to call home and it couldn't have come at a better time. Many residents are still dealing with the effects of the 2020 storms themselves and need their help. With the temporary closure of the Lake Charles office, residents in the community were cut off from the local services and resources DCFS would have normally provided.

DCFS Deputy Assistant Secretary William Tilley agreed with Howard and said "it’s a happy day. Happy day for staff, and citizens and we’re just grateful to have the office open.” Tilley pointed out that their reopening was a good sign that SWLA is making a comeback from all the devastation left behind by the storms. The return of DCFS isn't just good news for Lake Charles residents, but for the many families receiving assistance in the SWLA four-parish area including Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, and Jefferson Davis.

Secretary Marketa Garner Walters said that their offices in Allen and Beauregard parishes were also heavily damaged by the 2020 storms. However, DCFS was able to rebuild and reopen those locations as well. Walter's said they are all very excited about finally being able to offer their "full range of services to children and families in the region.” To find a DCFS location in your city or state click here.

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