Monroe County Indiana Salvation Army assistance programs.

The Social Services department at the Bloomington Salvation Army provides several assistance programs to struggling, low income families. When there are resources available, in general the client will be given under $100 for everything from medications to rent, heating bills, or food. They also offer referrals to legal aid, Sally's Place, and many other resources in Monroe County Indiana.

Meals, toiletries and food pantry – The Salvation Army partners with Hoosier Hills Food Bank in Monroe County to offer this form of support to needy residents. There are also donations from individuals and businesses that contribute groceries as well as household goods.

All in all, the assistance available will be frozen as well as canned food, refrigerated diary items, free baby formula, and much more. The toiletries as well as hygiene supplies from the Salvation Army may be diapers (for kids and adults), shampoo, soap, and more. There are also referrals to groups such as the First United Methodist.

Emergency financial aid is only available after the township trustee denied a request. In addition, appointments are needed as well as intake, and all funds are limited. There may be a few dollars to pay a delinquent energy bill or similar costs, such as rent. The case managers also refer clients to emergency shelter, deposit programs, or even legal aid in Indiana. As noted, funds are limited and money is available in limited quantities, after qualifications have been met.

Monroe County Salvation Army helps with various medical needs. In general, up to $40 is given out, and the aid will be non-controlled substances. There is also a partnership with the Lions Club on free eyeglass programs, and the IU School of Optometry can conduct vision tests. The last form of support will be medical equipment including wheelchairs, crutches, and other supplies.

Vouchers and the Bloomington thrift store are used to help meet basic needs. Vouchers are only issued a couple times per year to people who qualify. The clothing is effective at winter gear (boots, hats, jackets) as well as hot summer clothing. On the other hand, the thrift store is open 3 days per week to the public, and the goods for sale there are wide ranging. The items sold at the thrift store also help raise money for the emergency rent and energy programs, so in effect shoppers are assisting working poor families, the hungry, and the sick.





Two Fall and Winter programs are the Shield Against the Cold (which offers free jackets, hats, gloves, etc.) and Angel Tree, which gives free Christmas toys. There are also school supplies given out. Both of them are run in partnership with many other Monroe County Indiana businesses. For example, companies including Millican Realty, Spirit 95 Radio, Urban Air, and others donate surplus items. Children from low income families (who register and are accepted) are some of the key beneficiaries.

The Bloomington Indiana Salvation Army also has a community center. This is open to the general public. There are several activities held there for people to use. Examples include a free computer lab for internet access, recreational activities including Senior Volleyball, character building classes, and several others.

Seniors can use Sally's Place. This is affiliated with the Salvation Army, and the elderly in Monroe County can use it for everything from a hot meal to companionship. It also serves as a warm weather shelter during the cold Indiana winter months.

The main address of this Salvation Army center, which also supports Monroe County, is 111 N. Rogers
Bloomington, IN 47404. The phone number is 812-336-4310. If not qualified for social services, then referrals may be given.




By Jon McNamara

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