Central Community House of Columbus emergency assistance.

Serving portions of Franklin County Ohio, the Central Community House works to help the less fortunate and working poor. They can occasionally offer some financial aid for bills or medical needs, but a main focus is on case management as well as self-sufficiency. Some of the main services from the agency are noted below.

The non-profit operates as a full-service community center, and they adhere to the settlement house philosophy. So this means they serve as a hub for the residents of the near east side neighborhood and offer information, referrals, and guidance as needed.

In order to help, they offer community-based activities that enhance the quality of life for income qualified residents at the same time as helping families achieve and maintain greater stability in their lives. For those that are able to enroll, as part of the CHH family, they will have access to professional case managers who provide programs related to basic and/or emergency needs. They also assist with family-strengthening support, underemployment or addressing unemployment, and poverty.

While limited in scope, the purpose of the Emergency Assistance Program is to assist residents who are faced with situations of crisis. As funding allows, CHH provides Franklin County families with direct aid, referrals, and support. Some of the services provided may include utility bill assistance, rent help to stop an eviction, or mortgage assistance. They also can refer clients to loan programs. There are also a number of free food programs, health care, and so on. These programs are subject to availability of funds, and restrictions apply.

The non-profits Food and Nutrition Programs ensure that families don’t go hungry by providing after-school and summer meals, SNAP applications, take-home groceries, and other aid to them. Free community dinners, with Christmas gifts for children, and celebrations are often held throughout the year as well.

Referrals and advice is part of the Ohio Benefit Bank. This operates as an Internet-based program that simplifies and centralizes the process of applying for public aid and government benefits, such as SSI disability. OBB is available on site at CCH.




Central Community House believes that in order to raise healthy children, families need to be able to and also live in safe and supportive neighborhoods. In order to try to make this happen, CCH of Columbus Ohio and the Youth and Family Services programs enable clients to strengthen and stabilize their families by addressing multiple issues.

To this end, the services nurture ongoing relationships and are geared to have the greatest positive impact on families, the parents, and of course the children. Some of the family-strengthening programs include Back to School Bash, Holiday Help, Thanksgiving meals, health and wellness classes, and various other opportunities that are available throughout the year. The agency will also partner with Franklin County Children’s Services in operating the Family-to-Family Program and other public options.

The CCH Child Care Center provides high-quality, caring services for children under the age of 5. It is focusing on the development of the skills needed to succeed in school and in life. For children, they will address areas such as cognitive development, self-help, social skills, and even kindergarten-readiness. The goal is to prepare them to make a smooth transition into their first school year.

The highly trained Kindergarten Readiness teacher from Central Community House helps students recognize numbers and letters, and works in a number of other areas to help children prepare for success in kindergarten. It touches upon reading, math, and nutrition, among other services.  The Franklin Ohio Child Care Center accepts private pay or Title XX government subsidies as well.

Community Promise is the after-school program for youth in kindergarten through eighth grade. Each day throughout the school year, the students from Columbus Ohio work with youth leaders and volunteers to enhance their academic success.





Teachers, staff members and mentors from within the larger Franklin County Ohio community visit to guide students through special art and culture-related projects. Field trips can take place, and there are also free snacks and meals provided each day. Transportation may be available within the local area for this program.

At the other end of the spectrum, CCH’s Senior Program offers residents aged 60 the opportunity to receive assistance with basic needs. There may be meals, Christmas assistance, and linkage and/or referrals to community resources, such as agency on aging centers. Throughout the county there are an array of activities and educational workshops designed specifically for older adults.

Central Community House Financial Fresh Start offers mentorship, financial classes and assistance with creating household spending plans and saving money. Everything is done with the goal of helping clients build savings, pay down debts and reduce expenditures. Some of the Fresh Start programs and services include the following.

  • Foreclosure Prevention will help families both current and future homeowners with state of Ohio and federal foreclosure prevention programs. Counselors also offer free instruction in the areas of budgeting, credit repair, and mortgage assistance scams.
  • Credit repair and enhancement will include the development of a plan for restoring credit, budgeting, and more based on credit report analysis.
  • Predatory Lending sessions will equips residents with the knowledge and ability to discern a credible lending institution from a lender who sets unfair terms with borrowers.

As a member of the Earned Income Tax Coalition, CCH also offers Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) services in Columbus during tax season. The VITA program is a free service providing tax return preparation and e-filing for low-income and elderly Franklin County residents, and they will no longer need to pay for a tax preparation service.




The Computer Lab from CCH is in operation for the under employed and job seekers. Adults are encouraged to come in and use the computers for accessing the Internet, creating resumes, GED training, completing homework, and so on.

The main office of Central Community House is at 1150 E. Main St., Columbus, Ohio 43205, call 614-252-3157.


By Jon McNamara

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