AJFC Community Action Agency.

When facing a crisis or if you need help gaining self-sufficiency, the AJFC Community Action Agency may be able to assist. The non-profit will offer emergency food and shelter, government benefits such as LIHEAP and Head Start, and other aid. Case managers will partner with clients on self-sufficiency as well.

The number of programs administered are extensive. Only a small number of low income residents, seniors, or unemployed families will qualify. If you don’t, then ask for referrals to other charities or local non-profit organizations.

Financial support from the community action agency

Energy assistance programs for low income households from LIHEAP can help with paying utility, heating, and maybe even cooling bills. This is the main energy assistance program that is backed by the United States Department of Health and Human Services as well as the Division of Community services and the Mississippi Department of Human Services. LIHEAP has been designed by the state to offer support for working poor households towards paying a number of different utility costs and expenses.

Special provisions will also be made for the homebound, senior citizens, disabled and handicapped in Lawrence, Jefferson, and other counties. Assistance may also be given to help with other services related to energy, such as conservation advice. The level of help would typically depend on the applicants income and also the intensity level of the results from case management sessions.

There are two components to this low income program. The first is also known as regular utility assistance. The second is the Energy Crisis Intervention Program, which was set up to help people who have emergencies due to disconnections, weather, shortage in supplies or another household related emergency.

Financial help given may include payments towards bills for natural gas, kerosene, wood, propane or coal. There may also be funds from LIHEAP available for buying air conditioners, free fans or blankets and such. For more information on the programs contact 1038 North Union Street, Bldg. A, Natchez, MS. 39120, (601)-442-8681.




Emergency Food and Shelter was set up by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. However it is not just for disaster relief. The federal sponsored program aims to offer emergency assistant to people in the Claiborne, Copiah, Franklin, Jefferson, and Lawrence Mississippi regions by way of direct help award for paying energy, rent and housing costs.

The funds offered by AJFC Community Action Agency will supplement shelter, feedings, rent and mortgage or other utility assistance efforts. Anyone who wants to qualify for this will need to be classed as being in a crisis situation.

Those looking for assistance in Adams, Claiborne, Lawrence and other counties may wish to look at the Community Services Block Grant program. This offers activities and services to help relieve poverty and take individuals out of those conditions. Funding is provided by the United States Department of Health and Human Services through the Division of Community Services at the Mississippi Department of Human Services.

This federal program provides services and activities which have a potential and major impact on the causes of poverty within the community. Various services are offered including help with employment for those who have no job skills or transportation which is essential for a job. The program assists clients in finding full or part time employment and covers many things, including paying for licenses, uniforms, one-time payment for transportation for interviews, minor repairs to cars and making referrals to works sites and agencies.

The CSBG program may also help with the following. It can assist with cash assistance for tuition expenses, help with purchase of uniforms, books, lab fees, GED classes, and transportation to enrollment sites for registration.

Housing support from AJFC Community Action Agency is for individuals who are homeless or about to lose their home. It may have funds to help pay rental/mortgage costs, closing costs on a home, utility connection fees, and the non-profit cam provide homeless clients with financial assistance for several nights.





Other forms of Emergency Assistance is available. This is for individuals to assist clients with payment of delinquent utility bills, including water, natural gas, and electricity. Or look into housing needs, food/nutrition support, free clothing, or assist with emergency out-of-town transportation needs.

Programs for children, including Head Start

The AJFC agency, working with the Local Education Agencies of the Amite County School District, School District of Jefferson County, Natchez Adams County School District and Wilkinson County School District, all promote School Readiness. This program ensures that children from struggling families have the chance to take part in activities that go towards supporting positive outcomes. These goals include health, nutrition, family services, medical care and disability services.

The program supports parents in Mississippi and helps them to find and then reach their own goals. It takes into account the family culture along with characteristics of the community. It helps staff and parents to build up trust and a collaborative relationship and to go on to share and learn from one another. The Head Start program from AJFC community action also has numerous community partners that can work as a resource base in times of need or in a crisis.

Some of the services available include child development, health care, free nutrition and mental and health services to families and children. Along with this the Head Start program offers services to disabled children, job training to parents, pre and post natal services are also offered to enrolled expectant teenagers.

Early Head Start makes use of the Creative Curriculum where language and literacy are promoted. Children are able to read on a daily basis and hopefully learn to appreciate books and learning materials. The Family Resource Worker will partner alongside families to provide advice on dental assistance, nutrition, health and mental health needs.




Those are just a few examples of the resources from the non-profit AJFC Community Action Agency. Other social services and referrals are offered as well. Contact them for details.

Locations of centers

Adams County, 1038 North Union Street, Bldg. A, Natchez, Mississippi 39120, phone: 601-442-8681
Claiborne County office is at 604 Market Street, Port Gibson, MS, 601-437-5419
Copiah County AJFC center address is 301 West Gallatin Street, Hazlehurst, MS 3908. For information dial  601-894-4745
Franklin County - 38 Walnut Street, Meadville, Mississippi 39653, dial 601-384-5587
Jefferson County, 225 Community Drive, Fayette, MS 39069, main number is 601-786-3711
Lawrence County, 166 Green Street, Monticello, MS 39654. For information, dial 601-587-4370
Lincoln County, 217 North Whitworth Avenue, Brookhaven, Mississippi 39601, main number is 601-833-6349


By Jon McNamara

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