Help for the homeless as well as families living in poverty is arranged by the Fort Bend Service Center. As part of the application and case management process from the consortium of non-profits that offer this service, applicants will learn about short term housing solutions as well as where to turn to in Fort Bend County for medical care or food. So various assistance programs are arranged, based on the exact needs of the family.
Short-term shelter arrangements can be made. This is also known as emergency housing and it is combined with supportive services. Whether they are homeless because of an eviction or foreclosure, clients will have a place to stay as well as access to case management, which will help them tackle the root cause of their homelessness.
Staff from the Service Center will partner with the guest of the shelter. They will help them obtain resources, such as food, clothing, transportation, medical care and then eventual employment. The end results will be support in them secure permanent housing in Fort Bend County.
Ongoing advice is given at that time as well. This will help the tenant maintain their new housing or apartment over the long term. This is a form of Follow-up Case Management that can last for several weeks or months. It covers topics such as Workshops in Money Management, Tenant/Landlord Rights, and Home Maintenance.
Some clients may move from the shelter into Transitional Housing. The Fort Bend Service Center partners with the United Way as well as charities such as local churches as well as groups such as Lutheran Social Services (LSS). Another key resource is the Salvation Army in Texas. Together they offer services for homeless families facing barriers to self-sufficiency. The transitional housing offers a stable and safe environment where families can begin to reclaim their lives.
There are also housing sites for women with children as well as single parents. The applicant will need to be low to moderate income. Programs assist women with children who are homeless or in unstable housing. There is also support from Fort Bend Service Center for domestic violence survivors as well as those in recovery for chemical dependency. Women that use this service are encouraged and supported in their efforts to become financially self-sufficient.
Fort Bend Service Center partners that the United Way works with offer health care clinics. The sites provide free medical care to the adults and children. The clients can be enrolled in the other programs that are run, such as shelter or general case management. The clinic will also assist the underinsured in the region.
There are many services arranged by the medical center. They include physicals, vaccinations, TB testing, lab work, and prenatal care. This clinic service is run in collaboration with the Fort Bend County Department of Health and Human Services and local volunteer nurses and doctors.
Fort Bend Service Center provides free food, groceries and personal hygiene products to dozens of qualified residents per month. Most of this aid is available from the pantry. Eligible people from the community will receive a limited supply of food which includes, but is not limited to, rice, cereal, beans, meat, pasta and sauce, soup, canned fruits and vegetables, peanut butter and jelly, bread, tuna, macaroni and cheese, flour, sugar, salt, pancake mix and syrup, and powdered milk. Fresh fruits and vegetables are provided when available.
The pantry will also have some personal items or clothing too. Examples of that assistance from Fort Bend Service Center includes detergent, toilet paper, toothpaste, soap, deodorant, toothbrushes and shampoo. This is also for the homeless and job seekers in the city of Richmond Texas and other areas.
As a result on grants from the Untied Way, Fort Bend Service Center has limited resources to provide emergency financial assistance. The non-profit will only help with a portion of the costs, and in many cases the money will need to be repaid over time. So the main uses of loans are to help prevent evictions or overcome homelessness. Funds for these rental or security deposit expenses are very limited and may not be available. In some cases, based on funding levels, there may be money for utility bills.
Anyone from Fort Bend County applying for financial aid will be screened for eligibility and availability of funds. Since the funds for housing expenses such as rent are for a crisis, in general a 72-hour eviction notice is required. Or if a low income family is seeking funds to pay a security deposit, then a new lease agreement that is fully executed and is for the month in which the person is requesting assistance is needed in order to apply.
In order to take a holistic approach to helping the client obtain self-sufficiency, the Family Advocacy services are arranged. This is a form of case management for individuals and families with children living in Fort Bend County. The applicant will need to be facing an extreme financial challenge. Staff from the Service Center help families define goals. Then, an action plan is created that will give families information and the skills to make sound decisions about savings, paying down debts, budgeting, and much more.
The Center is only available due to partnerships and funding provided between groups such as the United Way, Salvation Army, and others. The main office is at 10435 Greenbough Dr, Stafford, TX. The information line is -281-207-2300.
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