Center for Family Resources low income programs.

Whether a resident needs to get a GED, or provide affordable food to their family, the non-profit Center for Family Resources may be able to assist. The agency works across the community of Passaic County to advocate for the poor and less fortunate, and provide short term help and support.

The main programs offered by the charity are below, and if a resource is not listed, there may still be referrals or other forms of support from staff and case managers. For example, the organization may have information on community clinics in the region, food pantries, or even shelters for the homeless and poor.

Self-sufficiency services in Passaic County

There are Family Development Services, referrals to GED training, and other support. All of these are truly intended to break the cycle of poverty and address the cause of the hardship.

  • One-on-one case management is part of the overall Family Development, and this will involve the client setting up strength-based goals around budgeting, debt reduction, employment, and more.
  • GED – It is well known that education, college, and even having a GED increases job opportunities as well as income, and it allows access to higher education. Center for Family Resources can direct individuals to these schools or centers.
  • Financial literacy, ranging from budgeting to credit counseling and repair can lead to better use of income amount clients.
  • Federal job training – Workforce centers in Passaic County and across the state of New Jersey can be turned to for part of full time employment as well as job placement.

Head Start as well as Early Head Start are for children from low income and working poor families that are ages three to five years. This service is offered throughout Passaic County, and the goal is to improve school readiness and child outcomes. Center for Family Resources has classroom and in home sessions as needed.

Financial aid and referrals from Center for Family Resources

In most cases, staff will redirect applicants to local programs. This service can be used by local families to find resources for their basic needs. Personnel as well as volunteers from Center for Family Resources search for the best resources for the client, whether it is a public benefit such as LIHEAP for heating bills or a local charity. In many cases, they can provide information on how the person can make phone and/or written contact to the resource in question.




The center strives to provide emergency food assistance for low-income families, seniors, and others in the region as well. There are a few different programs for this need, and they include the following.

  • U.S. Department of Agriculture Commodities is food and groceries for low income and working poor.
  • Meals on Wheels – Seniors in Passaic County and the home bound can use this low cost service.
  • Food pantry – The groceries and food that is passed out will be received through various community  drives and private donations, and the aid is passed out on a case-by-case basis.
  • Holiday support, whether Christmas food baskets or Turkeys at Thanksgiving may be provided.
  • Food banks may also have free personal hygiene products such as shampoo, deodorant, soap, shaving supplies, dental care items, and feminine hygiene goods.

Low Cost Child Care is arranged by the center, and this is for parents, including single moms, that are working at least 25 hours per week. There are fees involved, but the day care will be more affordable than some of the other options in New Jersey.

Crisis assistance can include limited funds for bills, medications, or paying rent in an emergency. Applicants will need to meet with a case manager and go through a formal application and assessment process. People should be prepared with proof of income, savings, employment, and other documentation.




Some of the aid offered may be for back rent if someone has a court eviction. Or there may be food from the pantry (see above) as well as loans or other forms of support services, such as for individuals that need grants for their utility bills. All resources from Center for Family Resources are first come and served, so in many cases people will be given information or referrals to other community programs in Passaic County.

Another key resource is Homeless Prevention, and this can offer time-limited financial and housing counseling for low-income individuals and families. There are other components of what Family Resources can provide too, whether that is a referral to a shelter or placement into transitional housing.

There are several offices of Center for Family Resources, including in Clifton, Pompton Lakes, and other towns. Call (973) 472 – 8880.



By Jon McNamara

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