SOAR November eNews

November 2016 SOAR E-Newsletter
November 2016 SOAR E-Newsletter
SOAR November E-News

The SOARWorks Social Media Accounts Have Moved to SAMHSA!

The SOARWorks Facebook and Twitter accounts have moved to the SAMHSA social media accounts! To stay up-to-date on the latest SOAR news and resources, like SAMHSA on Facebook and follow SAMHSA on Twitter!
We have enjoyed sharing resources, news, and events with the SOAR community over the past 4 years and look forward to connecting with you on the SAMHSA social media accounts. The SOARWorks Facebook and Twitter profiles will no longer be monitored and will be deactivated on Wednesday, November 23. Thank you for your support; keep SOARing with SAMHSA!

New Resources on SOARWorks Website

The SOAR TA Center is pleased to announce the following new resources:
  • Appointed Representative Services: This article discusses the availability of SOAR applicants' electronic folders (a.k.a. eFolders) to Appointed Representatives with Administrative Law Judge hearing and Appeals Council-level cases. 
  • SSA-821: Work Activity Report: This article provides information and tips for assisting applicants with the Work Activity Report.
  • All SOAR webinar recordings are now available on YouTube.

November is Youth Homeless Awareness Month

November is National Homeless Youth Awareness month. We have collected SOAR resources on youth to honor the month and to assist our SOAR partners who work with youth. We encourage you to visit our Youth Topic page on the SOAR website to learn more.

Success Stories


Zina Washington of Help Me Help You in Long Beach, California wrote in to share that Help Me Help You was able to secure funding for its SOAR program by serving as a subcontractor to Harbor Interfaith, which was funded through the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority's Coordinated Entry Services Request for Proposals. This funding allows Help Me Help You to hire a part-time, BA-level outreach worker and a part-time Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Zina says, "This is a big step in helping us develop our program. It is our intention to develop a full program…so we are well on our way." Congratulations Help Me Help You on this fantastic news!
Do you have a success story you would like to share with the SOAR community? E-mail it to!

Federal Updates

SSA Announces 0.3 Percent Benefit Increase for 2017

Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for more than 65 million Americans will increase 0.3 percent in 2017, SSA announced. The 0.3 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 60 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2017. Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on December 30, 2016. Read SSA's 2017 Social Security Changes fact sheet and visit SSA's COLA web page to learn more.
Public comment deadline: November 18, 2016
SSA is seeking public input for a potential demonstration project that will study ways of helping people with disabilities (specifically, those with musculoskeletal impairments) remain in the workforce. Through this research, SSA hopes to identify effective strategies for supporting workers who want and are able to keep working while living with a disability. Your input will help to guide this effort, which could potentially lead to changes in the Social Security Disability Insurance and SSI programs.

Job Postings

North Carolina

The Servant Center in Greensboro, North Carolina is seeking a full-time SOAR Case Manager. The successful candidate will provide outreach and support to SSI/SSDI applicants.
Learn more about this posting on the SOARWorks website. Do you have a job posting you would like to share with the SOAR community? E-mail it to!

Funding Corner

SOAR Funding and Sustainability Tip

Don't forget to include small, locally focused grants as a part of your overall funding and sustainability plan for your SOAR programs. Remember—most nonprofit funding comes from local sources and most of the time the application processes will be much easier. Additionally, if awarded, the reporting requirements tend to be much less intensive and the use of the funds more flexible. For more information, e-mail SOAR TA Center liaison Matt Canuteson at

Recent Stories from the SOAR Voices Blog

A Family Reunion at a Grantee Conference Blog Image
A Family Reunion at a Grantee Conference
A Day in the Life of an Online Course Reviewer Blog Image
A Day in the Life of an Online Course Reviewer


SOARing Over Lunch Conference Calls

November 15, 2016; 1:00 p.m. ET
The next SOARing Over Lunch Conference Call will take place November 15 at 1:00 p.m. ET! The SOAR TA Center is hosting a series of informal monthly calls designed to help support SOAR efforts across the country. Participants can call in to ask about any SOAR-related question they may have.

Upcoming SOAR Webinars

November 16, 2016; 3:00 p.m. ET
In this webinar, representatives from the SOAR TA Center and SSA will discuss the new revisions to the Mental Disorder Listings. 
November 30, 2016; 3:00 p.m. ET
In this webinar, the SOAR TA Center, SSA, and SOAR leaders will discuss working while applying for and receiving SSA benefits.
In this webinar, held on October 12, 2016, the SOAR TA Center and SOAR leaders discussed the challenges and successes implementing and sustaining SOAR in rural areas. The webinar recording, PowerPoint slides, and supplementary materials are available for on-demand viewing on the SOAR website.

SOAR Leadership Academies

The SOAR TA Center is now accepting applications for all Leadership Academies. Contact your SOAR TA Center liaison with any questions.
  • December 6-8, 2016: Washington, D.C. (Apply soon!)
  • February 7-9, 2017: Des Moines, Iowa
  • May 2-4, 2017: Portland, Maine
  • August 29-31, 2017: Detroit, Michigan
The SOAR TA Center is sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Disclaimer: The SOAR Technical Assistance Center develops and distributes E-News with support from SAMHSA, HHS. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official view of HHS or SAMHSA.