Group of women stand in front of mission wall
JFS staff pictured in front of the agency’s “Mission Wall.”

MOUNT VERNON – The Knox County Department of Job & Family Services (KCDJFS) officially opened its “Mission Wall” as yet another reminder of the agency’s commitment toward making the lives of Knox County families better.

The artwork was commissioned by local artist William Hunt.

In 2022, KCDJFS received 1,722 calls and completed 433 investigations of alleged abuse and neglect.

The average caseload included 107 active families per month and 105 children and youth placed in out of home care.

KCDJFS is approaching 32 licensed foster homes that will provide safe and secure living environments for Knox County children that are not able to be placed in their homes of origin.

Eleven adoptions were finalized during the year, and 84 youth were provided gifts and stockings during the annual Christmas celebration thanks to the donations of generous community organizations and individuals.

Knox County Children’s Services currently spends over $300,000 per month in placement costs for children and youth that currently reside in out of home care settings.

The drug epidemic has created a catastrophic effect for many of Knox County’s most vulnerable families. 

As a result, Knox County Children Services protected an average of 105 children per month in 2022 due to their inability to safely reside within their own homes. Multiple youth required residential facilities that cost $700 per day or more.

“Our Mission is the driving force behind our work and dedication to the families that we serve in Knox County” said Knox County JFS Director Scott Boone. “We visit homes with weapons, drugs, and unspeakable events of violence, abuse, and neglect.

“Our staff consistently navigate through dangerous environments all in the name of protecting children.

“Beyond that, we have employees in every single division
(Children Services, Workforce, Public Assistance, and Child Support) that give their
very best on a daily basis in order to deliver the highest level of customer service.”

The Life & Culture section is brought to you by Knox Community Hospital.