Ashtabula County Catholic Charities assistance programs.

A thrift store, food pantry, and clothing closet at Catholic Charities in Ashtabula County are some of the main programs for clients. The church based charity provides additional support services to qualified low income families, such as possible rent help, transportation to a job interview, or applications to government benefits. However the most readily type of assistance is basic needs from the thrift store and food from the pantry.

In fact, those two resources are often used to raise money for their assistance programs. So when a person shops at the store for furniture or clothing, that money is used to both “keep the lights on” at the charity as well to provide financial help. So all residents, no matter their income, are always encouraged to use the site.

Ashtabula County Catholic Charities offers case management and limited financial help. Any type of grant paid out comes with restrictions. Note only certain bills be able to paid or living expenses once assistance has been given. There are also restrictions around income, residency, and more.

Funds are targeted at Ashtabula County residents that are experiencing a sudden, unexpected crisis or loss of income. The cause of it needs to have been beyond their control. Cash assistance may be offered for expenses that is left unpaid would leave the family homeless. This ranges from back rent to energy bills or a portion of a deposit. Another use of a grant may be for transportation to employment for a short period of time, such as if the families car is under repair. In any case, the person must verify a documented crisis.

When financial aid from the Jefferson Ohio charity. Support is provided or a free box of food from the pantry, it comes with case management/coaching services. The client will learn how to set goals and learn about proper budgeting as well as money management. It covers rebuilding credit, opening saving accounts, and employment needs. All of this is done by staff at Catholic Charities to help the family avoid a future crisis.

Catholic Charities receives funding through a variety of sources, including donations or government grants. Each has separate guidelines and is limited. Note that the non-profit may help in other instances too, but this will be determined on a case by case basis. An example may be help in paying for a prescription drug for a critical medication or providing food to a family.

Ashtabula County Catholic Charities thrift store and clothing closet – The site is open Monday through Thursday. It was created to serve as a second-hand store open to the public. The location is a great place for anyone to shop, no matter their income or needs.





It depends on donations. Therefore when residents of the county are cleaning out their closets at home, the staff will ask that people keep in mind that thrift stores depend on donations to remain in business. The sale of goods from the Community Closet/thrift store also pay for the Congregate Meal Programs as well as financial aid offered to the community.

The center is formally known as Harriet’s Cupboard. It does its best to meet all of the needs of people living in poverty. Whether someone needs a box of food, or items for their home, Catholic Charities may assist.

As with any thrift store in the county or Jefferson, the goods for sale vary. During the cold months, there will be winter jackets passed out for children or senior citizens. Summer months the thrift store will stock up on school supplies (such as notebooks, pens, and pencils), and there will also be Christmas toys or gifts. The churches have many different items in the thrift store for sale.

Clients can be placed into Work Experience programs. This includes long-term work assignments with public or non-profit employers. This will lead to enhanced employability of individuals who have had little or no experience as part of the competitive labor force. Catholic Charities also partners with area employers on this to help the individual find the best job opportunities for gainful employment.

The Catholic Charities in Ashtabula County offers applications to public aid. Some of them include heating bill benefits from HEAP, SNAP food stamps, or Women, Infants and Children (WIC) services. To receive public benefits through the Department in Ohio, an applicant must reside in Ashtabula County. Also, asset as well as household income guidelines apply.




  • Families living in poverty that qualify can receive free groceries or nutrition counseling for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
  • Some programs, such as TANF in Ohio, may offer funds for paying expenses such as housing, medical care, clothing for work or school, food, and other bills.
  • There may also be food for children from birth to age five.
  • Grants for paying energy bill may be issued from HEAP.

A number of resources are run from the church. Ashtabula County Catholic Charities is located at 4200 Park Ave., Ashtabula, Ohio 44004. Call (440) 992-2121.


By Jon McNamara

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