Financial support for bills from Bridge Ministries.

Families that are struggling and faced with a crisis are some of the individuals that Bridge Ministries may be able to assist. The faith based, non-profit offers support to the vulnerable for their rent, food, health needs, and utilities, among other services. A focus is on homeless and coordinating eviction prevention in the Birmingham Alabama area. The charity helps people that are less fortunate, and the leading programs for qualified individuals are below.

Some of the resources, such as the food pantry and even the financial support administered, rely on donations. So please give back to the ministries when possible. Your time and contributions will be put to good use.

They operate as a non-profit. The Bridge Ministries, its staff and volunteers all work together to coordinate emergency assistance for those that need it. They can stop homelessness by providing information on, or funds, for paying rent. If someone is facing eviction due to unpaid utility bills, then grants may be issued for those. In some cases, a Jefferson County applicant will be issued a loan for their needs.

The homeless in Birmingham can get help in securing temporary emergency lodging, such as a shelter. There is also transitional housing services available. Or look into a security deposit program to pay the rent or move in costs for a new apartment.

The ministry Emergency Family Shelter is for homeless families with children. There is also lodging for single moms or parents. If the facility is full, or resources are not available, then Bridge Ministries will arrange for vouchers to pay for short-term emergency lodging at a local motel.

If you are homeless, then the case managers or shelter directors make these referrals after the family completes the intake interview process. Then, when the family situation stabilizes and they have an income, Bridge Ministries may even have money to help with paying security deposits or first month's rent to help them obtain low income apartments.

Food and nutrition can be addressed too. The non-profit also maintains a small pantry in Birmingham of non-perishable food, groceries and personal hygiene products. These items are for the elderly, children, and working poor in the county. Due to limited funding, resources and the tremendous demand for services in Alabama, most clients receive financial assistance only one time, so ask for help only when truly needed.




Another goal is to help low income families, the unemployed and others gain stability. So in addition to that emergency financial support, social workers offer case management services, referrals to job retraining, and other human services.

As part of this process, applicants will be required to create, and follow, a realistic budget. It needs to be based on income and total expenses for the household. If there is an unemployed, able adults in the home, they will be required to document and prove an active search for employment is occurring.

Many clients are referred to Bridge Ministries by hospice services as well as local hospitals in Jefferson County. The charity also helps individuals that are struggling to obtain eyeglasses, dental care, prescription drugs, and other durable medical goods.

Additional support for people dealing with health care needs can be coordinated by Bridge Ministries. Hospitals, doctors, and hospice providers refer clients to the ministry, and the medical coordination goes both ways.




Also, the charity will assist low income or uninsured patients with medical needs. They can get help in dealing with pharmaceutical companies for free or reduced cost prescription medicines. Bridge Ministries will give this type of help and prioritize the homeless, low-income elderly, and disabled people who cannot pay for life-sustaining medications and durable medical supplies.

For example, staff from Bridge Ministries works directly with health care providers in Jefferson County Alabama to locate and assist families who are struggling to maintain utilities and housing because of medical problems. Exceptions to the onetime financial assistance policy referred to above may be made for those who are too ill to stand in lines for help or people receiving hospice care.

For more information, call the ministry. The location is 11th Avenue South and the corner of 19th Street. They are based at Southside Baptist Church. Dial 205-930-0309.




By Jon McNamara

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