One of the nation's leading faith based organization, local United Methodist Churches may run so called car ministries that help qualified low income families with their transportation needs. This can include everything from repairs to the use of a car for rides to a job interview or maybe even a new vehicle. Each church across the nation operates their own ministries, so there is no guarantee that this is offered. However, a good number of United Methodist Churches offer this service. Or if they don't, then referrals may be offered.
Many people are faced with a short term crisis from time to time. Maybe they are faced with unexpected car repairs, or they need some other form of transportation. Maybe an individual needs an automobile to get to work so they don't lose their job. Or they need a onetime ride for a doctor appointment or job interview. When this occurs, the car ministry may be able to provide the individual with a vehicle that can help people meet their basic, day-to-day living needs.
Over the years, thousands of families and individuals have been helped by their local church. The transportation needs offered will be wide ranging. However, as noted, this is not available everywhere, and the programs also rely heavily on donations from the community as well as the support of volunteers, such as mechanics.
The United Methodist Church Car Ministry will closely review and consider all applications. Unfortunately many requests will need to be denied due to limited resources. Each local church receives a number of letters from struggling or lower income people in the community who are without a vehicle for transportation and are going through a challenging life situation.
While the conditions in place from each agency or church will vary, in general some or all of the following are in place. The applicant will need to have a valid driver's license. They will need to be able to obtain and continue to pay the insurance on a vehicle as by their state law. Any vehicles will also be for qualified low income applicants, and they need to be able to pay for the costs of owning and maintaining a vehicle. The repairs or transportation will generally only be for people that need their car for work related reasons.
Not only will a formal application be requested in most cases, but the process will be extensive. The local United Methodist Church will usually require proof of hardship, income, and a letter giving your background. Personal references are also usually needed. After all, the main objective of these programs is to provide cars to people for the purpose of employment.
In some rare cases, the applicant may also be given a "new", gently used but fixed up car. This will also depend on donations, so if you can contribute to the car ministry please do so. After all, donating an unneeded vehicle to your local church is a great way to give back to your community. It will go only to income qualified people who lack the resources and income to purchase a vehicle on their own.
While people from numerous background and situations may qualify, what the ministry has found is that the cars often go to people who have lost their job and are looking for new employment but their car has died and they have nowhere to turn. Repairs tend to go to individuals who are working, but their income doesn't allow them to pay for the repair on their own, so they are at risk of losing their job. Other clients may be self-sufficient single mothers trying to support a family on a minimum wage salary.
When you donate, you will also benefit by knowing that a legitimate need in your town or county is being served. It will bring mobility and hope to those who are unable to meet those needs on their own, and it will help someone that is facing a short term hardship. Not only that, but the donor can also usually receive a tax deduction on their state and federal income tax return.
Each vehicle donated will be inspected by a volunteer team of mechanics and other professionals. United Methodist Church can make minor repairs and clean up the vehicle before it is given away. Not only that, but the charity will process the title transfer, turn in your old plate for you, and even take the paperwork to the DMV. However, the family receiving the car may need to contribute towards some of those costs.
For more information, try a local United Methodist church in your town or county for support. Refer to a Car Ministry program to see if they offer it or have referrals to one.
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