Referrals and direct assistance is available from Boyertown Area Multi-Service. The agency focuses just on residents of the immediate region, and a number of assistance programs are administered by the non-profit and its various volunteers. They also partner with local agencies, such as Veterans Affairs and Berks County, in an effort to better coordinate their resources.
The Community Food Pantry provides groceries and canned items to low-income residents of the organization's service area. This is made up of the greater Boyertown Area School District and the townships of District, Pike, Hereford, Oley, and Amity. This is run in partnership with area churches, service organizations, businesses, schools, the Greater Berks Food Bank and individuals.
As resources allow, food is available for anyone in general area who currently lacks the income to meet their families’ nutritional needs. They may be eligible to benefit for this program’s services. Food boxes passed out consist primarily of bread and bakery treats; non-perishable items; meats; and eggs and produce as they become available. The pantry also adds various items that cannot be purchased with SNAP food stamps, including toiletries, cleaning products, paper products, free diapers, and so on.
The Multi-Service Community Food Pantry’s approach is different from a good portion of other local organizations in that case managers from the center meet with clients by appointment only, and this will help with ensuring their privacy and confidentiality. This also provides an opportunity for staff to recommend other public assistance or social services to help each household, such as SNAP.
The disabled or homebound seniors can enroll into Meals on Wheels. This was created as a delivery program, and it is staffed by volunteer drivers who bring low cost, nutritious noon meals, and optional cold evening meals, to the client. Most of the aid is for seniors (aged 60 and older) who are homebound and/or disabled, and unable to shop for groceries or prepare food for themselves.
The organization will ask that participants provide a suggested anonymous donation of two dollars per meal, although this is not mandatory and no one is ever denied service due to inability to pay towards this food program. Preparation of balanced, nutritious meals takes place at Multi-Service food pantry.
Meals on Wheels is healthy too. A typical serving includes vegetable, meat (protein), and one serving of starch (such as potato or rice), fruit, bread or roll, 1% milk, and dessert. Cold evening meals typically include a sandwich, side, dessert, and a drink, and there may be seasonal Christmas meals served too. Other assistance include the senior center, which is the location at Spring Street.
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, offered in partnership with Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, provides direct financial assistance with the payment of utility bills for natural gas or electricity. LIHEAP can also help with heating fuels, such as oil, coal, propane, kerosene, wood, or natural gas. The cash payments are disbursed directly to the utility company or fuel provider on behalf of the customer.
The Multi-Service WARM Program is another resource for heating bills. This option furnishes home energy conservation improvements, education, and information at no cost to help low-income clients reduce their electricity costs and save money on their bills. To qualify, applicants must meet income guidelines and a minimum monthly usage requirement, and some of the available energy-efficient home improvements may include Inspection of Electric Water Heater, Insulation of Attic and Walls, Caulking, and the installation of Energy-Saving Light Bulbs.
PCAP, or the Pennsylvania Customer Assistance Program, assists eligible residential customers in Boyertown with eliminating past-due bills. The goal is to help people maintain electric service. Taking energy usage and household income into account, PCAP may offer clients a monthly credit on their utility bills.
The $1 Energy Fund can be applied to at Boyertown Area Multi-Service, and this offers financial assistance for the payment of home energy and also heating bills to qualified, income-eligible customers experiencing situations of hardship. It enables participants to avoid disconnection of their power source when all other types of assistance have been exhausted.
The Volunteer Transportation service furnishes a ride to individuals who cannot drive or who do not know anyone who is able to drive them to say an interview or medical appointment in Berks County. The non-profit approved dedicated and generous volunteers donate their vehicles and time to ensure that clients do not miss critical appointments.
Holiday help is offered. Boyertown Area Multi-Service assists children from local families who are struggling financially, and they want people to still have the opportunity to celebrate Christmas or Thanksgiving. There may be a free Holiday dinner or the program will allow families to give gifts to their children at Christmas.
For more details, the Boyertown Area Multi-Service is located at 200 W. Spring St., Boyertown, Pennsylvania 19512. the programs are available in a limited area, and residents can call 610-367-6957.
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