Milwaukee County - Disabilities Services Division

Family Support Program

1220 W Vliet Street, Suite 300

Milwaukee, WI 53205

Referral: line 414-289-6799


Family Support

What is the Family Support Program (FSP)?

Family Support Program is a funding source to purchase services and/or equipment for severely disabled children residing with their biological parent, adoptive parent or legal guardian. The goal of FSP is to prevent out of home placement for severely disabled children. Services or items acquired are short term or one-time supports.

Who is eligible for the Family Support Program?

Children, age birth to 21, with a severe physical, emotional or developmental condition which is diagnosed through use of medical, behavioral or psychological criteria and is characterized by the need for individually planned and coordinated care treatment, vocational rehabilitation or other services. The condition is likely to result in substantial limitations in a child's ability to function in three or more of the following areas:

  • self care
  • receptive and expressive language
  • learning
  • mobility
  • self-direction
  • capacity for independent living
  • economic self sufficiency

What is the assessment/ service plan process?

The Milwaukee County Disabilities Services Division (DSD) administers the Family Support Program (FSP). A comprehensive assessment is completed by a DSD Children’s service coordinator for each child referred to FSP. This involves a home visit and an interview with the family regarding the child and family's needs. School and medical records are reviewed to verify disability status and condition. The family's financial situation is also reviewed. A State required Functional Screen is completed for each child and this provides the eligibility determination. If the child is determined eligible for FSP, a service plan is developed with the family.

The DSD service coordinator develops a plan with the family. The service plan identifies items and services to be acquired to benefit the child and family. The plan generally covers a calendar year and during this timeframe the services or items must be purchased.

What occurs after the service plan has been implemented?

When the plan has been completed, the child’s case will be closed for Family Support funding. If the child has new needs in the future, the parent may contact Disability Services and the child’s name can be placed on the children’s wait list.

What services and items can the Family Support Program fund?

Disability related equipment or services mutually agreed upon and allowed under program guidelines can be paid for. Services and or items cannot be covered without prior approval or agreement with the service coordinator. Other funding sources such as insurance or community programs are also explored to cover services needed for the child and family. Examples of items or services which may be funded through FSP are:

  • architectural modifications of a home for accessibility
  • counseling not covered by insurance
  • dental or medical services not covered by insurance
  • specialized nutrition needs
  • specialized clothing related to the child's disability specialized equipment related to the child's needs
  • respite care (on a limited/short term basis)
  • recreational alternatives such as camp
  • specialized transportation not covered by other funding sources

Is there a waiting list?

There is generally a waiting list for this program. Families on the waiting list are served by date of referral to the program.

How can I get more information or make a referral?

Referrals can be made from 8:00A.M. to 4:30P.M., Monday through Friday via:

Phone: (414) 289-6799 (English & Spanish)

Voicemail is available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week

Wisconsin Department of Health Services -

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