Mid-Florida Community Services.
Resources and services from Mid-Florida Community Services, Inc., or MFCS, can help low-income individuals in Volusia, Citrus, Hernando, Pasco, and Sumter County. Case mangers try to help people become self-sufficient. Additional assistance programs offered include energy bill assistance, Head Start (education), housing resources, senior services, and transportation.
Head Start is a form of Education and learing program for children. Working in collaboration with other non-profit community partner organizations, MFCS oversees both the Head Start program that is federal government funded as well as the Voluntary Pre-kindergarten program, which is state of Florida funded. These programs are available in the following counties of Hernando, Sumter, and Volusia Florida.
In addition to educating children to be prepared to enter school, the Head Start program provides family, disability assistance and free health care services to those that need them. In order to be eligible, children from low income families must be 3 or 4 years old. There is no cost for the Head Start or VPK programs for families who qualify. For more information on the Head Start or the VPK program, please call 1-888-227-0010.
Housing assistance, utility bill programs and related services are overseen by Mid-Florida Community Services. Through the LIHEAP or Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, very low income individuals and families who are eligible can receive credit towards an existing utility bill or maybe even their summer air conditioning costs. This program is funded through the federal government as well as the Florida Department of Community Affairs, Division of Housing and Community Development. Grants from LIHEAP serve tens of thousands of households each year. There are three main programs are available. They are:
- Crisis Energy, which is program that provides households with help when they are experiencing a home energy or emergency crisis situation. Those eligible may receive hundreds of dollars towards their existing utility account and bills. Individuals and families who have received a final notice and/or disconnection of utility services, such as natural gas or electricity, may be eligible to receive help under this crisis program.
- Regular utility bill assistance also offers a credit payment that is applied to a household’s utility account. This is only offered once per year, but runs for all 12 months. There are a number of other utility bill assistance programs in Florida as well.
- In a weather-related crisis, families or individuals that have a home emergency that was caused by a specific weather disaster, such as a windstorm, hurricane, flooding, etc., can work with LIHEAP and the Mid-Florida Community Services to obtain assistance.
All three energy bill assistance components have eligibility requirements based on income and the number of people in the home or apartment. For information about applying to any of these programs, please contact the Mid-Florida Community Services office at (855) 643-3567 to schedule an appointment.
The free Weatherization Assistance program helps individuals and families reduce their energy costs by making energy efficient improvements to their home. Staff from the community action agency will conduct an energy audit of your residence to determine what energy efficient improvements need to be made to it. Possible improvements include installing attic ventilation, adding attic and wall insulation, repairing or replacing inefficient heating and cooling units, repairs, replacements, and/or installations, as well as installing solar screens.
Applicants to this Mid-Florida Community offices program must reside in Citrus, Hernando, Pasco, Sumter, or Volusia counties and meet income guidelines.
Senior Services are coordinated by MFCS. The agency recognizes the importance of seniors and elders in the local communities and offers a number of activities and assistance programs to help seniors, their families, and caregivers. It is a focus of the Volusia, Pasco, and nearby counties with more people retiring there. Mid-Florida Community Services can also refer clients to other senior assistance in Florida.
The Caregivers Support Group, Community Care for the Elderly, and Financial Aid is offered. Other resources for seniors can include free Home Delivered Meals, Respite Care, Emergency Alert Response, Caregiver Financial Assistance, Medicare applications and other services. These services are usually provided as an alternative to off site institutional or nursing home care. It is for people over the age of 60 that are also functionally impaired. Fees and bills will be due from customers but they are calculated on a sliding scale and factor in individual income and their current expenses.
Additional Senior Services are offered from MFCS as part of the federally funded Older Americans Act Title III Program. Many of these are run in partnership with the agency on aging in Florida.
Services are free, however priority is given to the neediest seniors. Services include transportation for elderly, mentally or physically challenged individuals, as well as very low income and economically disadvantaged residents of Hernando County Florida. Transportation is provided door-to-door and is primarily used for doctor or medical appointments. Call 799-1510 or Medicaid clients should call (352) 799-5177.
Mid-Florida Community Services office locations
Hernando County, 820 Kennedy Blvd., Brooksville, FL 34601, telephone: (855) 643-3567.
West Pasco County. Another office is at 11245 Spring Hill Drive, Spring Hill, Florida 34609, Telephone: (855) 643-3567
East Pasco County, 14446 7th Street, Dade City, FL 33523, (855) 643-3567
Sumter County, 100 East Dade Avenue, Bushnell, FL 33513, main phone (855) 643-3567
Citrus County, 1649 W. Gulf to Lake Hwy., Tree Tops Plaza, Lecanto, Florida 34461, call (352) 527-3809