Services from Waseca Area Neighborhood Service Center, which is a non-profit focused on helping the vulnerable in the county, range from food to vouchers at a thrift store. While not always available, when possible, the agency may be able to offer some very short term financial help. This is offered for temporary needs, and is not an entitlement. Any aid is at the discretion of the organization.
Some examples of what may be offered include free food, clothing for work or school supplies, loans for rent as part of the New Beginnings housing program, information on application sites to LIHEAP and much more. They also have information on other local charities in the region, ranging from soup kitchens to shelters and more.
The food assistance programs have been in operation for a long period of time. The operate a shelf for the community, a weekend backpack snack service, and NAPS – Nutrition Assistance Program for Seniors. The food from Waseca Area Neighborhood Service Center focuses on seniors, children and students among others from Waseca County.
The charity also has a soup kitchen, that serves Christmas food too. The charity works to provide shelf-stable lunches to income qualified students, including those residing in low-income apartment complexes. The program was established to feed children who use the free/reduced lunch program when school is in session.
Two or three days’ worth of supplemental, nutritious food is delivered directly to the children twice a week during the summer. This will keep them healthy and also help alleviate some of the stress experienced by parents who lack the funds or transportation to provide adequate food for their children during the summer. Hundreds of children from lower income homes have been fed by Neighborhood Service Center.
This goes without saying what the food shelf may offer. This service will have free groceries for people that are struggling. It operate as a client choice type pantry in which people select what they need. Dial 507-833-4022.
The Thrift Store at Waseca Area Neighborhood Service Center has both everyday, needed items and seasonal supplies too. The location is volunteer-operated (with some full time staff) and it is also donation driven. The store may sell the following:
Gently used clothing of all sizes (for work or everyday life), books, furniture, appliances, baby items, antiques, cribs, furniture, and more is there. Some items for sale may occasionally be antiques as well. When a family is in a crisis, the Center may provide goods such as clothing for free.
Housing search and placement – The Waseca Area Neighborhood Service Center helps clients obtain safe and affordable rental units and deals with housing needs as part of New Beginnings. This can take place in the region, or outside of areas within local areas of concentration of poverty. There are a few areas of focus from case managers, in addition to helping them locate an apartment.
-Some small dollar amounts, such as around $100, can be paid out for rent, mortgages and other energy bills.
-The staff will partner with PHA to increase the use of Section 8 vouchers for paying rent.
-Tenant education and support service classes are arranged to help prevent future homelessness.
-Pamphlets of government aid are provided to Area Neighborhood Service Center clients.
-There may be funds, or even loans, to cover security deposits or related costs.
Ongoing support can be arranged as well. One is mediation, as landlords and tenants are educated about their rights and responsibilities. This will take place in one on one counseling sessions arranged by the agency. The team will also help tenants removing barriers to locating an apartment.
The Waseca Area Neighborhood Service Center thrift store is open most days per week. There will also tend to be some sale days that are available throughout the month. This is where not only can people shop, but they can learn about programs such as New Beginnings for paying rent or deposits. The address is 203 3rd Ave NW, Waseca, MN 56093, or dial (507) 833-4119.
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