Community Services, and its districts and departments, is proud to be a vital part of the social safety net that makes the Gila River Indian Community a caring community. On behalf of the Gila River Indian Community, we manage and deliver financial and social supports for Community members in their time of need. As a leader, we work directly with and through our community and government partners to ensure the services we deliver to those in need are appropriate, effective and accessible.
Our Vision is a future in which all of our clients are moving toward greater self-reliance and eventual independence as members of the Gila River Indian Community.
Our Mission is to promote self-determination and a healthy quality of life with dignity for our community and families.
Community Services is committed to service. We are dedicated to building service relationships based on dignity, understanding and respect. The ultimate value of our contribution is the quality and effectiveness of these relationships, formed and sustained with clients, colleagues and partners.
Community Services takes its responsibility to the Community members very seriously. The integrity of our programs and our credibility depend on how well we manage the resources entrusted to us. This means Community Services will:
- Meet obligations to deliver service in a manner that is accountable, efficient and responsive.
- Ensure clients fulfill their agreements which accompany the supports we help them to attain.
- Continue to improve performance, measure results and engage our community, enabling us to work in productive partnerships.
The key to our success is the energy, commitment and professionalism of all Community Services staff. By investing in staff, we will maximize the contribution to clients and the community. Through supporting staff to develop their skills and potential, our mission will be accomplished and our vision realized.
About Our Services
Community Services provides a variety of programs and services to help enrolled residents of the Gila River Indian Community find the shortest route to financial and social supports. Working under numerous programs, staffs in 7 community-based service centers deliver the numerous District Assistance Programs by providing short-term financial support to clients and assisting them as they work toward their goal of self-sufficiency. For Urban members in the Phoenix metropolitan area, the Urban Assistance Center, located at various Community Services caseworkers will meet with clients to discuss short-term and long-term goals and other services available to them during intake and outreach. They also respond in crisis situations. In these situations, staffs assess the immediate needs of clients and make whatever referrals are required.
The financial assistance that is provided for members residing within the boundaries, unless otherwise stated, may include:
- funds for food, shelter, clothing and other household items through one or more programs, such as Food Distribution/Commodities Program, Maternal Nutrition/WIC, Dialysis Support Program and TERP
- direct financial assistance for part or all of electricity, gas, and in some cases, water utility bills through its tribally-funded Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) or the federally-funded Low-income Heating and Energy Assistance Program (LiHEAP)
- other benefits such as back to school and clothing allowance through the Education Affordability Program (EAP), and Burial Assistance are available to all enrolled Gila River Indian Community members living off or on the Community
- for our Elderly and Disabled Community members, benefits are provided through our Elderly and Disabled Quality of Life Program (EDQLP)
- temporary relief on an as needed basis for those Community members who experience an unexpected illness, injury, natural, technological, or human-caused event through the Temporary Emergency Relief Program (TERP)
- limited Government services for bee control, emergency home repairs not exceeding $100.00, and Enrichment and Enhancement for District-wide enrichment and enhancement activities for enrolled Community senior citizens, youths and adults participation for group activities and events
- Burial Assistance up to $500.00 for all eligible resident and non-resident enrolled members of the Gila River Indian Community.
Community Services also administers the Community's Recreation Program, and its division, the Wellness Center, the Dialysis Support Program for enrolled Dialysis patients, Maternal Nutrition/WIC Program, Food Distribution/Commodities Program, and the
Elderly Services Division
Elderly Services Division is responsible for assisting the Community's resident elderly and disabled population in provides personal and professional liaison services, in concert with other services offered by the Department and other Community, State, and Federal agencies, such as BIA, AHCCS, ALTCS, Social Security Administration, GRIC Social Services, etc.
The Community Services and its 7 District Service Centers also receives intake applications for Housing assistance, which are reviewed and approved by the Community Housing Department; and for Temporary Emergency Relief Program, which are reviewed and approved by the Office of Emergency Management.
Community Services Policies
Community Services policies are governed by authorized legislated programs enacted by Community Council resolutions, and determines how assistance is delivered throughout our community. For information on these policies, please contact your designated district service center.
Appealing assistance decisions
There may be times when clients disagree with decisions that are made about their assistance. If this happens, they can write to their caseworker, or District Service Center Coordinator to request an internal review. The original decision will be reviewed by a supervisor. Within ten working days of the request, the client will receive a written notice telling them of the outcome of that review.
If they still disagree with the decision, clients may be able to submit an appeal to the caseworker's supervisor, the Elderly Services Coordinator, and for those decisions rendered by the District Service Center Coordinator or Elderly Services Coordinator; clients may be able to submit an appeal to the Community Services Director or designee.
Appeals must be made in writing and filed within 30 days of the client's receiving the decision of the initial internal review. Appeal forms are available at all Community Services offices or directly from the Community Services Director's Office. Completed forms should be hand-delivered or mailed to:
Community Services Department
Post Office Box 2137
Sacaton, Arizona 85247
Upon receipt of appeal, appeal will be forwarded to the appropriate District, Division, Program or Department for processing of said appeal.
Christopher Mendoza, Director
Director, Community Services Department
Post Office Box 97
Sacaton, Arizona 85147
Office Number: 520-562-9694
Cell Phone: 520-610-9867