DuPage County families facing a crisis can get help from People's Resource Center. The agency will offer a number of assistance programs in an emergency. While income conditions are in place, they may include rental or mortgage assistance. Other solutions may be free food, funds to pay utility bills, and case management.
The center also offers clients with Job Assistance, computer training as well as access to Adult Learning and Literacy classes. So this means that DuPage County residents may be able to receive temporary financial support as well as longer term self-sufficiency.
Limited emergency financial assistance, much of it from referrals, is available to DuPage County residents who are faced with unforeseen hardships or needs. Examples of what may qualify someone for help includes loss of transportation, unexpected unemployment, inability to cover utility payments, or sudden illness and medical expenses.
Trained social services staff and volunteers from People's Resource Center work closely with eligible clients to determine the extent of their needs and financial eligibility. Upon successful completion of the interview and intake process, those who meet initial program requirements advance to a more in-depth interview. Supporting documents will need to be provided by clients to prove their hardship.
The emergency assistance program then makes connections between clients and appropriate programs in DuPage County, either through PRC or other non-profit community service agencies. Or clients may be linked to local churches or charities. Please note that all services depend on the availability of funding at the time of application, and any financial assistance provided by PRC or its partners will be in the form of gift cards or direct payments to a service provider, such as a landlord. For an application or details, dial 630-682-5402.
One time rent and mortgage assistance is also available for eligible clients. The funds are targeted at those who are having difficulty paying rent or their home loans. There may also be grants to help with security deposits due to temporary financial crises.
The purpose of the housing program is to prevent families or single parents dealing with temporary hardship from becoming homeless. To be eligible, clients must be current or prospective DuPage County residents who are bound by a mortgage or lease agreement. As with any aid from PRC, program services depend on the availability of funding.
For those that don’t qualify, or in the event of a lack of funding at any given time, People's Resource Center will provide referrals to other local sources. As with the emergency financial assistance program, all payments are made directly to the landlord, bank or mortgage provider by PRC.
The PRC Employment and Job Assistance Program helps unemployed DuPage County residents with both locating and keeping jobs. Services begin with an orientation program, where clients explore program options, including job coaching, workshops, career counseling and the non-profit Career Resource Center.
They have a number of volunteer job coaches are trained to teach essential job-search skills, like creating a cover letter and resume, completing a job application, conducting Internet job searches, improving interview skills, as well as finding job leads.
Additionally, the Job Assistance service hosts monthly Lunch and Learn sessions in certain local cities, including Westmont and Wheaton. At these sessions, job seekers have the opportunity to network with each other and with industry and HR professionals. This gives them a way to share information, advice, and moral support. Please call 630-682-5402, extension 333 to make a reservation.
The Adult Literacy and Learning program offers instruction in math, English, reading skills, GED preparation, and citizenship test preparation. Courses help by PRC are presented in large-group, one-on-one and small-group situations.
Formal and so called drop-in tutoring is also available in DuPage County to students at all learning levels. After an initial meeting with staff members, students are assigned to tutors or placed in classes. While the non-profit PRC makes every effort to ensure that students are placed as they request, there may be waiting lists for certain courses.
Free computers are available due to a partnership with Microsoft. The agency is a Registered Refurbisher, so this means PRC refurbishes donated computers for distribution to low-income county residents or students in need of free or low cost home computers. They also provide clients with free home computer repair services through the Dr. Fix-It Program.
Training is available from seven-week, 90-minute courses in computer skills and software (Microsoft Word, Excel, Windows, Powerpoint, basic computer skills) are offered to DuPage county adults, at various locations throughout the county. Basic computer class participants are eligible to receive free computers as well.
Food Bank from PRC offers all low-income DuPage County residents the opportunity to shop and fill a grocery cart with free groceries and canned goods of their own choosing. This is done rather than people receiving pre-packed bags or boxes. The pantry stocks fresh meats, produce, dairy products, canned goods, breads, and household staples.
Client visits are limited to one per month per household, and food amounts depend on the size of each family and any existing special needs. Volunteers are available to answer questions, greet clients, explain how the pantry services work, and bag and carry out your selections. For the convenience of DuPage County clients, they operate two Pantry locations: 649 Blackhawk (off Plaza), Westmont, IL 60559 and 201 S. Naperville Rd., Wheaton, Illinois 60187.
People's Resource Center clothing closet can help with basic needs. Family members who are clients receive a monthly quota to shop in the free, gently used Clothes Closet. The center will have seasonal clothing for men, women, students and children is available. All clothing, such as backpacks, shoes, winter coats, and other goods comes from community donations.
For more information, People's Resource Center can be reached at 630-682-5402. As noted, in many cases the agency will offer referrals. The center is located at 104 Chestnut, Westmont, Illinois 60559.
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