Over $1 million in federal government stimulus funds has been provided to the county for homeless prevention and rapid rehousing programs. The government funding will make money available to help residents who may be at risk of becoming homeless, those facing eviction, and the money will be used to help them pay back-rent as well as utility bills.
People who are facing eviction, who have lost their homes, or who are homeless today may be eligible for assistance to help pay security deposits, utility deposits and their rent for up to six months. The rent help can be extended for up to 18 months as well. Recipients of the funds must have a job, be collecting unemployment, or they need to some other source of income to qualify for assistance. The reason being is they have to be able to sustain the home after the assistance runs out, and the program is not meant to be a program that pay people indefinitely.
The money is split between different groups. About half of the funds went directly to Pasco County Human Services ((727) 834-3297). The other half of the government funding was divided between the Pasco County Housing Authority (phone (352) 567-0848) ($300,000) and a handful of nonprofit agencies and other charities.
For example, The Homeless Coalition received $25,000 and The Salvation Army ((813) 991-6830) received $50,000 to provide immediate, short-term housing assistance and money for energy bills.
If you are interested in learning more or applying, the first thing someone should do if they need help is to call Pasco County Human Services and set up an appointment or they can go to their closest Salvation Army office to learn more or apply.
If you are struggling, and if you need help with paying your monthly rent, utility bills or security or utility bill deposits, call Pasco County Human Services and request an appointment. They are located at 13853 15th St. Dade City, FL 33525 and also at 8620 Galen Wilson Blvd., Port Richey, FL 34668.
DCF - Emergency Financial Assistance for Housing Program administers the Emergency Financial Assistance for Housing Program (EFAHP). This program will help renters and homeowners who need direct financial assistance and cash grants for helping with overdue mortgage and rent payments, or who need help with paying security deposits. (877) 891-6445. Or learn more on Florida mortgage help programs.
A local Consumer Credit Counseling agency (phone number (877) 854-1446) has on staff HUD approved mortgage counselors that will work closely with a homeowner. They will review their housing situation, and determine that type of mortgage assistance they can provide. They will also help homeowners that are on the bring of foreclosure, or that may already be in the foreclosure process. Call to learn more on mortgage help.
Some of the local agencies that provide financial assistance for paying bills, debts, rent, and other expenses include:
Christian Social Services - This agency provides assistance for anyone in need of clothing or food, and they also offer financial assistance for Progress Energy customers and their utility bills. (813) 995-0088.
Neighborhood Care Center (phone number (813) 780-6822) - Offers several programs including free food, furniture, clothing and household items. They can also provide financial assistance with paying for part of electric and water bills if those services are being disconnected. Also, money for prescription medications may be offered. Read help from Neighborhood Care Center.
Pasco County Human Services Division - This government agency offers a variety of programs, and also partners with other local non-profits. Receive assistance with everything from utility bills, rent, and mortgage payments to health care and prescription medications.
They can also help the low income, seniors, and disabled apply for government and public assistance. Some of the maybe lesser known resources available include medical bill assistance from the Health Care Responsibility as well as funds for paying for funerals. Call (727) 834-3297, or more details Pasco public assistance.
Salvation Army of Pasco County - Phone number (352) 521-3126. Provides financial assistance for utility service disconnections. A number of other services are also provided, including Christmas assistance gifts, and meals. Other emergency assistance in the Dade City Florida region can include funds for rent, shelter, and even job training. More.
Society of St. Vincent de Paul - This agency helps needy and low income people. Assistance including food is given once a month, financial aid and cash grants are given once a year to with a utility bill or rent. Applicants need to have a shut-off notice or eviction notice in order to receive help. (813) 949-6094
Pasco Crossroads operates programs for veterans in the area. Assistance ranges from transitional housing to employment and federal government grants. Much of the financial aid is for housing needs, such as rent or energy costs, but they also support female veterans and provide services such as Vocational Rehabilitation Employment. More information.
Center of Hope – The non-profit charity organization, which is part of the Salvation Army, provides temporary assistance to families and individuals. The agency supplies basic needs such help with rent, free food, utilities (only funds for Progress Energy bills). All assistance distributed depends on funding. In addition note that clients may need to pay their monthly rent or bill down before they can apply. In addition, the Salvation Army may be able to assist with prescriptions (not including narcotics or psychotropic), clothing and referrals to other collaborating agencies and state of Florida public assistance programs. 8040 Washington Street, Suite 300, Port Richey, Florida 34668
Pasco County Homeless Coalition partners with agencies across the region. Together they use money raised from the community and federal government grants to provide emergency rental assistance, transitional housing, and funds to pay the security deposits to the homeless and people facing eviction. Programs from the coalition include Housing First, case management from FIT, Homeless Emergency Assistance, and other aid. More Coalition for the Homeless.
Daystar Hope Center – Meet with a counselor. You may be able to access food, clothing and other items from the on-site store, receive help with prescription medicine, rent (if funds available), utilities, and other necessities as requested. 15512 Highway 301, Dade City, FL 33523, dial (352) 523-0844
Local churches – Several local churches are part of the St. Vincent organization. They are listed below. The churches and program may be able to help with offering help for bills at most once per year, food once a month, money to help with air conditioning or utility bills, and more.
Faith in Action North Lakeland, Inc. – The non-profit runs financial assistance programs that make rental payments for people who are faced with eviction. Emergency funds for paying utility and cooling bills is offered too, as well as non-emergency programs the federal government Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Meals and senior programs, such as rides and transportation, are also offered. 1123 Omohundro Avenue, Lakeland, Florida 33805-3534, (863) 686-0009
Women's Resource Center -Winter Haven-Ave A – Offers referrals for clients in Pasco County as well as phone intake and assessment. 165 Avenue A NW, Winter Haven, FL 33881, phone (863) 294-5318
Agricultural and Labor Program – This is a nonprofit, private organization that works with the state of Florida to provide financial assistance, resources and services to seasonal farm and migrant workers, disenfranchised persons throughout Pasco County, and the rural poor. Both financial aid is provided, as well as loans for emergency needs, job placement, and other support in Pasco County. 7301 Lynchburg Rd, Winter Haven, Florida 33881, phone (863) 956-3491, click more details.
Emergency shelter and transitional housing programs are widely available in Florida, including Paso County. Units focus on the recently evicted and also longer term homeless. Some of the services available may include case management, low income apartments, food, credit counseling, and much more. Read transitional housing Paso County.
Church Service Center Bartow – The church can help lower income families in times of crisis with food, clothing, and household items. 290 East Church Street, Bartow, Florida 33830, dial (863) 533-5822
Regional holiday and Christmas assistance programs work to spread the joy among the working poor and families living in poverty. Charities pass out toys, free gifts, food baskets, and hold parties. If someone needs help at Christmas or another holiday, find more information.
Mid Florida Community Services, Inc. serves Pasco and is the community action agency for the region. Numerous social services, counseling, and financial assistance is available. The non-profit offers short term, emergency financial assistance for paying rent and electric bills. The uninsured and seniors can get help with prescription needs as well. Much of the utility bill assistance is offered as part of the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP.
More aid is offered as part of CSBG. This provides case management and financial assistance for low-income and working poor households that are striving towards family self-sufficiency. The center can provide assistance with mortgage, rent payments, energy costs, and RX. Another Mid Florida Community Services program is Weatherization, which provides free home repair measures related to energy conservation.
The Pasco County agency also processes applications for Head Start program. It helps children from low-income families, preparing them for kindergarten and providing health, mental health, free nutrition, and dental services.
With many seniors in the area, they may also receive support from the community action agency Department of Senior Services. This offers qualified elderly a wide array of services and resources meant to help the elderly, their families, and caregivers. It can include Meals on Wheels, prescription assistance, guidance for programs such as Medicare, and more. Seniors, through weatherization, may even qualify for repair or replace inefficient heating & cooling units.
The Mid Florida Community Services, Inc. is located at 14446 7th Street in Dade City, Florida 33523. Call (855) 643-3567. The agency will do its best to meet the needs of the community or refer people to resources. Read more MFCS Community Services.
Mulberry Community Service Center – Offers prescription drug assistance. Can help patients with the purchase of and paying for prescription drugs. Aid is focused on who would be in an emergency situation without financial assistance. 301 NE 5th Street, Mulberry, Florida 33860-2138, call (863) 425-1523
Agencies that focus on rental assistance - Several locations, including non-profits, churches, government organizations and and charities can offer emergency rental assistance. Funds can pay housing costs if an applicant has an eviction notice or they face homelessness. Read more.
Help of Fort Meade - Community Aid & Emergency Services - Helps low income families with offering free food, furniture, and clothing. 121 West Broadway, Fort Meade, Florida 33841, phone (863) 285-6600
Metropolitan Ministries Of Pasco provides numerous programs. They include Food Pantries, GED Instruction, clothing, rent and utility assistance, and general case management. Support is for the homeless too. Additional social services are offered by the non-profit. 3214 US Highway 19 Holiday, Florida 34691, call (727) 937-3268. Learn more.
Catholic Charities operates in Dade City and Pasco County. The charity organization may be able to assist families regardless of their religion. They have programs for single parents, the working poor, homeless, seniors, and others.
When funding is available, the organization and its partners may offer some or all of the following. Numerous housing services are available, including foreclosure counseling or emergency funds for paying rent. They also have information or run transitional housing housing programs. Basic needs, such as food, clothing, baby formula, and more is also generally available in Florida. More on Pasco County Catholic Charities.
Zephyrhills Wesley Chapel Ministerial Association runs a resource known as Samaritan Project. This assists with rent expenses, utility bills, water costs, and other help as needed. Funding is limited and they will only assist provided funds are available. (813) 810-8670
Healing Hearts Ministry - Offers assistance with electric bills. They may provide support with needed payment through contracts with Duke Energy. 5510 River Road Suite 103, New Port Richey, FL 34652, telephone (727) 389-9086.
Basic needs, such as school supplies, clothing, and vouchers for hygiene items, may be provided by clothing closets. Volunteers and charities run these centers, and they offer a wide variety of items. Some of the Pasco County centers will items for a small fee, others give goods are for free. Click here.
The local community action agency, Mid Florida Community Services, Inc., can be reached at (352) 796-1425. They run the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which provides cash grants and other forms of financial aid to help pay utility and cooling bills.
Contact Bay Area Legal Services to speak to a non-profit law firm. Receive free legal advice and representation. Call them at (352) 567-9044, or click here to learn more about Florida free legal advice.
Consumer Credit Counseling also can help people lower interest rates on their debts, or eliminate it altogether. A credit counselor will work with the individual to explore various options, including debt management plans and consolidation loans. Working with a non-profit agency has been shown to be very effective in reducing debt. Call the agency at (877) 854-1446, or learn more on debt help.
St. Vincent de Paul Resource Center - Health Services provides assistance for obtaining long term medications to those patients who live on a limited income and have either a limited or no prescription health insurance coverage. Find out more on free prescription medications, or call them at (727) 868-8160.
One of the leading non-profit health care organizations in the Pasco County Florida region is Premier Community HealthCare. They have several different locations around the county. Call (352) 518-2000. A number of free or low cost health care programs, prescription medications, and more is offered to income qualified people. Another option is the Good Samaritan federal government qualified health center. ((727) 848-7789). If these locations can’t meet you medical needs, find the phone numbers and addresses of additional Pasco County community clinics.
A couple dozen food banks and centers operate around Pasco County Florida. A number of assistance programs and resources provide free meals, groceries, and other aid, such as clothing and baby formula, to residents who need help. Three of the leading places to call for help are below. Or click here for more food banks.
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