Families facing a crisis, and that are out of options, can turn to the Assistance Center of Collin County. The non-profit works with the city of Plano and other organizations to help low income families that are facing a crisis. A number of services, grants, and financial aid is available. In many cases, the center will also offer referrals or help families apply for other assistance, such as public benefits.
This includes both self-sufficiency as well as very short term, emergency financial aid for rent or other housing expenses. It is offered in partnership with the City of Plano, among other groups. Case managers will coordinate a one time cash grant for paying expenses such as rent (if qualified) and staff from the Assistance Center meets with the family monthly to help them become self-sufficient. This is ongoing, and they track progress on this.
Other funds may be available as well. There can be assistance for a mortgage payment or delinquent utility bills, if that is what may lead to homelessness. This is in addition to rental assistance for tenants in Collin County. Priority is for low income qualified families with children and those facing imminent eviction or foreclosure.
A food pantry is administered as well by the Assistance Center of Collin County. This is also operated in partnership with other charities and non-profits in Plano. Children, the elderly and needy can get groceries, perishable goods, canned food, and more.
General emergency assistance is a core function of ACCC. Numerous volunteers, case managers, and staff will meet with low income and working poor families. They will offer referrals for any services or help they need. It can include referrals, application to government benefits such as SSDI disability or LIHEAP, and other aid. Intake volunteers that wok at the center can point people to the social services. They will also perform follow-ups to ensure the crisis is resolved.
The Collin County Assistance Center can be thought of as a safety net for local, struggling families. They may qualify for short term, emergency help with essential human services. Appointments can be made over the phone, and some walk in services are offered too.
Help for prescription medications and other medical care can be arranged by ACCC. This is very important for the uninsured in Collin County or low income families that struggle to pay their medical bills or deductibles. To make matters worse, what may sometimes happen as well is that lost wages due to time away from work because of child-care or illness affect the residents ability to pay for prescriptions, so this creates a cycle that is hard to break.
Intake and specialists from Assistance Center of Collin County work with local hospitals or doctor offices to help ensure qualified patients get the help they need. They will help them apply for prescription discounts and ensure they get the follow-up they need. Many services are offered at the Project Access Clinic or the Collin County Adult Community Clinic. In some cases, the Assistance Center will even directly pay for prescription medications for the patient.
Free school supplies are passed out during the summer or fall months, as donations allow. Students can receive new back packs, shoes, notebooks or other required school supplies. It is for those that are living at or below the federal government poverty guidelines in the Plano Independent School District (PISD). The program is often called Tools for School by the assistance center.
Christmas assistance and Thanksgiving programs are held. Churches, charities, and the Assistance Center of Collin County work together in an effort to provide free holiday gifts or toys to children and families living at or below the federal poverty guidelines. They also offer one month supply of free food or special holiday meals. They also run adopt a family and similar programs in the region.
The ACCC / Assistance Center of Collin County is located at 900 E. 18th Street, Plano, Texas 75074. The emergency number is 972-422-1850.
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