South County Assistance Network (SCAN) works with the disadvantaged community in Anne Arundel County, in particular the vulnerable such as senior citizens or single parents with children. The agency serves clients on a first-come, first-served basis with the limited resources that it has available to it. Everything from free food to referrals to financial aid for rent, medications, and other expenses are available.
The application process is extensive. Individuals seeking assistance must provide picture identification, proof of income, and other information such as birth certificates, and these must be presented for all household members. Staff from the agency may also request more information at their discretion. Eligibility for assistance is based upon income and residency requirements.
The South County Assistance Network Direct Services program can alleviate the condition of low to moderate income families in a crisis. This service provides financial aid or even low interest loans for basic needs in an effort to prevent homelessness, hunger and job loss.
Any type of financial assistance from South County Assistance Network or its partners is also available on a one-time basis for rent expenses, a portion of mortgage payments or utility bills so that clients can maintain their current place of residence. Moreover, the charity operates an on-site food pantry for needy families in an effort to prevent hunger in Anne Arundel County. For employment purposes, the agency helps clients afford the cost of public transportation as well for such activities as a job interview.
They also offer cash grants for households with BGE. The goal of this SCAN program is to help families so they can keep their power or heat on. Every year there are stories of elderly literally freezing to death, and this resource can help prevent that.
Affordable, independent living options are available through housing services offered by local organizations. Through partnerships with local housing complexes in southern Anne Arundel County, the agency is able to place qualified working poor and struggling families in apartments that provide safe, secure housing. People who benefit from the housing programs will also need to take part in other supportive services, including childcare assistance, transportation, budgeting workshops and life-skills classes.
There is a Short-Term and a Transitional Housing Program in which units or apartments are offered to clients. This can also benefit the formerly homeless. Participants make weekly monetary contributions to their shelter expenses and rent, and South County Assistance Network helps clients secure permanent housing in the region.
People from the community can also turn to the charity for employment and education services that improve their ability to compete in the competitive job market. These resources are designed to not only help clients obtain and retain employment, but also earn a sustainable wage. To assist individuals in preparing for employment, case managers offer individualized counseling and instruction in regards to resume preparation, employment searches and job interviews.
Furthermore, those looking for a job or new skills can attend career-readiness workshops to enhance their skills. These include GED - General Educational Development classes that cater to the needs of non-traditional students, whether the youth or senior citizens. GED classes are offered in both the afternoon and evening, and students work at their own pace, either individually with a tutor or in a small-group setting.
Underprivileged families, including some seniors on a fixed income in Anne Arundel, often struggle to afford food or grocery expenses, and Thanksgiving only adds to that financial burden. South County Assistance Network aims to relieve the everyday as well as holiday stress by conducting the annual food drive to help such families truly celebrate Thanksgiving or Christmas. The charity distributes the goods that it collects through the drive so that needy families can enjoy the holiday in the comfort of their own home.
For more information regarding any of the aforementioned services, contact South County Assistance Network at (410) 867-4923.
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