The advice from Steeple To People Ministries is free, confidential, and non-judgmental. In an effort to break the cycle of homelessness and poverty in the region, there may be emergency funds for rent, referrals to clinics, and data on job placement centers in the region. Most of the support is a result of the money raised from the thrift store. When the sales are going well, the agency may be able to direct the client to other financial aid programs.
The information is also available to Spanish and non-English speakers. Newcomers to the area, such as immigrants, can also be applied to resources for their needs. When in a crisis, or if the Chester County family needs long term support, the programs from the agency may be able to help.
Steeple To People Ministries tries to meet requests for basic needs, food, and “in-kind” items. Applicants are screened by case managers for vouchers that can be used at local thrift stores or food pantries. They can be used to pay for groceries, clothing, school items, kitchen supplies, and more. To be eligible, household income may not exceed 125% of poverty and people can only apply at most once per year, unless they are faced with an unusual crisis such as a disaster. People need proof of income for the last 90 days, proof of age and residency of household members, and more.
Each holiday season, Steeple To People Ministries partners with several churches, local businesses and non-profit organizations (such as the Salvation Army) to conduct a toy drive for children from needy families. Participants receive either small toys, clothing or gift cards.
Food is part of this as well. There may be food baskets, turkeys, drinks, ham and supplies also offered to low-income families so that they can cook and serve holiday meals in their home. These services are typically available for Thanksgiving and in December, with a home delivery option in some cases as well.
Employment services from partners of Steeple To People Ministries can be used in many ways. Clients can gain new skills, or they can also get support in transitioning from welfare to work. Individuals looking to use this service come from many different backgrounds and experiences. There are those from Chester County Pennsylvania that are unemployed, experiencing domestic violence, or homeless. Other clients have challenges such as substance abuse or mental health issues in their lives.
Steeple To People Ministries will help people gain self-sufficiency. More hands on assistance is arranged as well, including transportation to a job, access to affordable child care for a limited time, and clothing. Much of this aid is time limited in that will end after a certain number of week. This case management, along with direct support, is important to the employment service program.
Emergency shelters are opened in Chester County during the winter months. These locations can keep the homeless safe and warm. The centers will also give a meal, sleeping bag, blanket, and more. While the capacity is limited, Steeple To People Ministries may have other suggestions for housing needs.
The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) from Steeple To People Ministries is able to provide government grants for housing and energy expenses. There is also supplemental food to local agencies as a result of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funds.
These grants are able to provide additional emergency food and shelter for struggling, at-risk clients and currently homeless residents of Chester County. EFSP provides several benefits to applicants with funding distribution determined by local board members in participating jurisdictions. Examples of some of the financial aid available includes the following.
-Lodging in a mass shelter or hotel vouchers.
-Free food, in the form of served meals across Chester County or groceries.
Emergency funds for heating as well as gas bills during the winter.
-Steeple To People Ministries may help with up to one month’s rent or mortgage payment.
-Grants can be used for paying one month’s utility bill, including electric or water.
The Steeple To People Ministries Senior Companion Program gives residents aged 55 and over the opportunity to become part-time volunteer companions. This is mostly focused on assisting other, less able, seniors. The objective is to help clients by enriching the life of the companion. This is done through volunteer work, and allowing the second person to continue living in his or her own home with assistance, rather than entering a care facility.
Referrals are also available from Steeple To People Ministries. With the escalating cost of medical needs, the faith based charity can direct a patient to a local community clinic. There are centers that can provide basic screening for health care issues, such as blood pressure checks. Some clinics in Chester County can also provide dental care or cleanings. The volunteers at the faith based Ministry will direct people as appropriate. There is also linkage to government programs such as LIHEAP for heating bills, food, and much more.
Steeple To People Ministries is a charity in the region. They offer not only basic needs, but counseling and general care. The center is at 3886 Horseshoe Pike, Honey Brook, Pennsylvania 19344. For information or referrals, call (610) 273-7633.
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