Families in a crisis can turn to GraceWorks Ministries, and the non-profit does it best to provide short term financial help and assist the client as they tackle the hardship they are facing. Numerous short term programs are offered, such as food and funds for rent or vouchers for medications, as well as referrals to job placement and educational support. Another service known as Little Angles can help new or single parent moms in the area. The disadvantage in Williamson County can call upon the charity for support.
Emergency assistance may be offered for certain critical expenses that if left unpaid, could cause health or safety issues. This can include food or one time rent assistance to prevent homelessness. There may also be some money in a crisis for the payment of utility bills to prevent disconnection. Residents faced with a life threatening condition can use a voucher to obtain prescription medications. There can be other support provided by GraceWorks Ministries as well, which will be solely at their discretion.
The goal of the staff at the non-profit is to immediately resolve the crisis being faced by the family, and this is done in an effort to help the client get back on the right path to self-sufficiency. Case managers as well as volunteers will help people achieve independence and financial self-sufficiency.
Any type of financial aid is very limited, and applicants should be prepared to bring some or all of the following. Proof of residency as ID are required, as well as copies of bills and leases if seeking rent help. Other support needed will be proof of income for all adults, and from all sources, whether a job or public aid such as disability. Complete documentation of a financial crisis is needed as well.
In some years, there may be federal government grant money available to GraceWorks Ministries from Emergency Food and Shelter or other sources. The objective of this money is to expand efforts to provide emergency rental assistance, shelter, food, security deposits, and other supportive services for either homeless people or the hungry across the nation.
While resolving the immediate crisis is the first step, much more important is involving the entire family or individual in a conversation about the challenges that are preventing them from achieving stability. This will in fact be mandatory before any type of grants for bills or other expenses are paid out, and all applicants will need to develop a plan of action with staff from GraceWorks Ministries. There will be goals set and measured against, and they will involve using the existing strengths and assets of the applicant.
Food and other basic needs are available. There may be emergency boxes of groceries with non-perishable items. Some clients, such as the homeless, may receive free personal hygiene goods, and in some cases there could be baby formula or diapers. The boxes of food from GraceWorks Ministries will go a long way to reducing, or maybe preventing, hunger in Williamson County, in particular from the vulnerable population of children and seniors.
The food pantry strive to ensure that no neighbor leaves hungry. Volunteers from across the county and nearby towns work to stock shelves, sort donations and fill grocery bags with nutritious foods or groceries that are donated by area markets, congregations, businesses, schools, community groups, families and individuals. Or, even better, cash donations help GraceWorks Ministries purchase bulk foods at wholesale cost.
Meals for students and children is part of the Fuel Bag Program. It gives clients a snack or bag of groceries in their backpack before the weekend or a holiday, and it will keep the child fed during the break. A key part of this service is Second Harvest Food Bank. In some cases, the backpack can contain personal hygiene items such as soap, shampoo, and more for the student.
Holiday assistance is available from GraceWorks Ministries. This will be everything from meals to small gifts. So when combined with the Fuel Bag above, it is obvious that the charity will focus on children from Williamson County.
Nutrition is stressed too, and the center enables qualifying clients to shop for and select items based on the family’s nutritional needs. So in some cases this may include fresh fruits or vegetables. The elderly can also benefit and are a focus, and the Senior Food Program will pass out free supplemental groceries every month or home deliver a meal.
A thrift shop as well as clothing bank have a variety of items either for sale, or the very low income that have a crisis may be given some items for free. What is available at the store may be clothing for the whole family, coats, small appliances, shoes, vintage items, books, winter coats, Christmas toys, toys/games, lamps, dishes, and more. The thrift store from GraceWorks Ministries will have them at affordable prices.
The location depends on donations. So if anyone has items that are gently used, they can be dropped off. The contributions will even be tax deductible if the donor needs a receipt, and the items will benefit the less fortunate in the community.
Our Little Angels is for newborns and their parents. It gives items such as formula, free diapers and more. A main beneficiary of this service is single parents as well. Some of the other goods include Infant Car Seats, Cribs, Baby Clothes, Pack-N-Plays and more. The goods will be free.
Immigrants and migrant workers can also get help. There may be food or clothing, but more importantly, guidance on employment is available. This will be addressed in workshops such as on ESL or other educational support that can help the person either acquire a new skill, or improve an existing one. With the growth of immigration in both Williamson County and across the nation, this is an important service.
For more details, GraceWorks Ministries is located at 104 Southeast Parkway, Franklin, Tennessee 37064. Dial the non-profit at 615.794.9055.
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