The poor, immigrants, elderly, and vulnerable are some of the main beneficiaries of the assistance programs run by churches in Dallas County. However these local parishes can often help anyone in need, and they will not consider the applicant to fall into some different classification. A church may provide everything from food to spiritual counseling, one-time light bill or rent assistance, clothes, and shelter. Anyone can seek help, no matter a religion.
Any assistance is intended to be a last resort and to supplement other assistance programs available. Churches should not be (and will not be able too) serve all of the needs of low income families. But the support they offer (such as a voucher for food, few dollars for housing, etc.) can sometimes make the difference between hunger, homelessness, or not.
A number of Dallas area parishes, such as St. Andrew United Methodist Church (dial 469-385-1813), are part of a wider networks of charities. They do this in order to coordinate services as well as eliminate duplication so that individuals can't apply to each and every organization in the community. This also allows a church to better advocate for the poor in the community.
Basic health care needs may be met. Using volunteers nurses or other medical professionals, organizations such as Agape Clinic Grace Methodist Church (4105 Junius, Dallas TX 75246, phone 214-824-2533) offer services such as childhood immunization or vouchers to buy medications. This can often be effective for immigrants and others without proper health insurance. The churches may also be able to refer the indigent to other charity medical care programs or clinics in Texas.
When it comes to emergency financial support, the Dallas County churches are often part of the regional groups referenced above. Some of them include Society of Saint Vincent and many others. Any client that is struggling (such as sick, having cancer, or in a crisis) can apply for help.
Using raised raised from fundraisers and weekly masses, there may be assistance available for paying electric bills, gasoline costs, prescriptions, or rent. Other household living expenses may be paid on a one-off basis, after a thorough review by parishes such as Oak Lawn United Methodist Church (3014 Oak Lawn Ave, Dallas Texas 75219, telephone 214-521-5197) or others.
Immigrants, refugees, and newcomers to Texas can often turn to a local Dallas church. Both volunteers as well as full time employees at a church can help them acclimate to the region. They can learn about ESL classes, educational or job placement programs, and other acclimation services. Whether it is affordable housing, stuff for every day living or government programs (such as rent programs or SNAP) that someone needs to learn about, the religious groups may assist.
Churches collect donations of items from the public in Dallas County. They also reach out to local or national retailers, restaurants, hold fund raisers, and do much more to have collections for families that are living in poverty. Using all these donations, a church may pass out some or all of the following.
Not only are material goods collected by parishes such as Southern Crest Full Gospel Baptist Church at 710 E. R.L Thornton Freeway, Dallas Texas 75223, 214-821-2970, but they also coordinate volunteer groups. This is where people help newcomers to the region, such as Latinos that may have limited English skills. Or there are individuals who give back their time to the church by helping a senior repair their home or may drive someone to an appointment.
Several of the Dallas County churches also have second hand stores open to the public. They may outsource the running of these locations to groups such as the Salvation Army, but there will be some goods for sale. Volunteers pick up furniture, items such as cribs, and other goods and then repackage it. There may be medical equipment too for the sick or elderly, such as wheelchairs. Those items are then some by a church, and those funds are used for paying certain bills as well.
Some of the stores that are open, such as those at Concord Missionary Baptist Church, may offer free items in a disaster. When there is a floor or tornado, or when a fire burns a house down, these programs may be very beneficial. There are many ways to get stuff for free.
Children in Dallas County are much often facing hunger. It can impact everyone from a newborn to kids in their teens. Other children need mentoring, or maybe a place to go during summer break. Churches focus on helping the youth. They provide a snack during the summer, offer recreational activities, and volunteers work to keep the younger generation off the streets.
With dozens of churches located across Dallas County, with many open limited hours and days of the week, the services vary. To learn about a center where a family may live, call 211 to get this information.
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