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Bamberg County assistance programs

Find how to get help from churches, charities, and non-profits. In a crisis, everything from free food boxes to money to pay back rent, deposits on a new home, utilities to stop a disconnection, or grants for car repairs/gasoline may be offered. All across Bamberg County are agencies that combine one time financial support along with advice, counseling, information on government cash assistance or benefits and other support.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal government funding will be flowing to Bamberg and Orangeburg Counties. It is the result of the federal stimulus plan, and the money will be used to provide various forms of assistance, including rental and utility bill assistance for people who are facing an eviction, the newly homeless or those people who are at risk of homelessness.

If you are interesting in learning more or apply, the Middleton Street Samaritan House will receive the money over a two-year period. they will support people who live in the Orangeburg, Bamberg and Calhoun counties of South Carolina according to the Samaritan House chief operating officer. On average about 20 people contact the Samaritan House per day requesting assistance.

With the weak economy, the increasing number of layoffs and job reductions in the area, plants closing, unemployed, underemployed, and the working poor and the high cost to manage the household has contributed to the increasing need for aid. The funds will be limited and provided until they run out, so apply early. While funding may be replenished, there are no guarantees. The federal money cannot be used for mortgage payments.

There will of course be criteria and conditions to receiving aid. Program eligibility will be based on need after an assessment and screening process of the applicant. The individual or family applying will need to provide evidence of drastic changes in their income or employment which would support their need for help.

The applicant must also show their ability to have future financial resources to continue household expenses without returning to any other charity or organization for financial assistance. So in effect the funding is meant to help those people who are facing a short term financial hardship. There are other options, and find regional programs that offer rent help in the form of grants, loans, or mediation.





For more information or to apply, call 803-533-1005 or 803-533-1075. Or call Jamison at 803-516-0088 to make an appointment.

The OCAB Community Action Agency can be contacted as well. This may be the leading organization for  low income and struggling residents to contact. Case managers will offer qualified clients a hand up and not a hand out. This means that families can receive self-sufficiency, information on local job training programs such as WIA, and other support.

However, some financial assistance may be offered as well in Bamberg County. The agency can help families apply for numerous federal government funded programs and grants. Some of them include LIHEAP (low income energy bill assistance) and get referrals to rent help from section 8 housing vouchers. Another key resource from OCAB is for Head Start applications.




Other services from the OBAB Neighborhood centers can assist the elderly and low income seniors in the county, including offering them free food, home care, and companionship. As indicated, the main goal of the community action agency is to help families get back on their feet and gain long term stability with their financial situation. Read more on OCAB Community Action Agency.


By Jon McNamara


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