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Centre County assistance programs.

Financial assistance for bills, rent, and other services

One of the leading non-profit charity organizations is Interfaith Mission (phone 234-7731). The mission of this non-profit agency is to help low to moderate income residents who are struggling and in need of help. They accomplish this providing emergency financial assistance for bills and expenses to low income residents of Centre County.

The organization provides emergency mortgage, rental, housing, free furniture distribution and more. Financial aid from IHS, while limited, may include grants for utility, heating bill assistance, and in depth money management services. People can even receive information on ways to help deal with and reduce their personal debts and the disabled or seniors can sign up for payee services. More Interfaith Human Services assistance programs.

Another agency that may be able to help is Local Help & Transient Fund. The Local Help Fund offers numerous services. It provides both financial and cash assistance to individuals and families who find themselves in need of financial assistance for paying bills and dealing with emergencies. The organization can offer help with paying rent, heating and utilities. Those people who are in need of aid from Local Help are referred to The FaithCentre. 355-5834

The local community action agency, Central Pennsylvania Community Action, Inc. (phone (814) 765-1551) offers a host of various assistance programs, grant programs, and provides numerous forms of aid. A general listing is here, but contact them for more information on these or other options, as well as learn how to apply.

  • Water bills -Receive financial assistance from the H20 - Help to Others Program.
  • Home repairs and energy saving improvements - Several housing assistance programs can provide loans for, or free repairs to homes, including energy conserving updates.
  • Utilities - Various options are available to help with paying utility and heating bills. They run programs directly with utility companies, as well as both federal and Pennsylvania state government programs.




  • Credit, debt, and foreclosure - Work with counselors to learn how to deal with a foreclosure, and how to address housing or consumer debt issues. Click here to learn more on debt reduction programs.
  • Medical assistance - Learn where to turn to for access to medical and health care programs, how to deal with hospital and medical debt collectors.
  • General help - The community action agency can also provide transportation assistance, access to free food, and they are a great resource for information on other local charities and resources.
  • Housing - This is a focus of many of the CPCAA programs, and it ranges from weatherization to emergency funds from the RAP, or rental assistance program, that can help prevent evictions in Centre County.

For more information on these or other resources, such as job placement and budgeting workshops, learn more on assistance from Central Pennsylvania Community Action.

Bellefonte and State College Salvation Army is a non-profit that may also be able to help the needy. The organization can distribute food, emergency financial assistance, and they also administer holiday programs such as Angel Tree. A formal application process is in place and will usually require clients to attend case management, budgeting, and/or credit counseling classes. Back to school supplies and transitional housing are also offered across Centre County. More details.

Learn about medical and health care programs

Whether you are low income, do not have health insurance, or are unemployed, Centre Homecare, Inc. is an organization that is dedicated to providing high quality, cost effective home healthcare and medical care, as well as other related services to all individuals or families in the local service area of Centre County Pennsylvania. They provide help to patients regardless of their ability to pay for hospital or medical bills. Programs offered by the agency include home health skilled care nursing and therapies; general care, hospice and healthy beginnings. 237-7400.

General assistance programs

Community Help Centre is an all volunteer-based, non-profit charity organization that provides resources, services, education services, job training, employment services, and information to those people who are in need of support. They run an onsite drop-in center and also administer 24-hour hotline. They work to provide information on and coordinate and deliver services throughout Centre County, including information on Pennsylvania and federal government assistance programs. 237-5855





Central Pennsylvania Catholic Charities provides services in Bellefonte Pennsylvania and across the county. Most of the programs offered are non-monetary, but there may be some occasional funds for paying expenses in a crisis, such as rent, medications or energy bills. Other resources available include free food, assistance for immigrants and seniors, applications for the Neighbor-to-Neighbor Program heating bill program, and general case management. More central Pennsylvania Catholic Charities resources.

Foreclosure prevention, and rent assistance

For people with housing concerns, whether they are facing an eviction from their apartment, or facing a foreclosure filing, Housing Transitions, Inc. may be able to assist you. 814-237-5508

They can provide support, limited financial assistance, and information on resources to people who are behind on their rent or facing an eviction.

If a homeowner is behind on their mortgage payments, the agency also runs a Foreclosure Prevention program. This free service is available for homeowners in Centre County, and it will help prevent a mortgage default on their behalf and it will help keep individuals and families in their homes. Mortgage counselors will work one on one, directly with homeowners and their banks and lenders to coordinate financial and mortgage counseling. The housing counselor can also mediate and/or negotiate payment plans with lenders, often utilizing both available federal government and state of Pennsylvania programs. No fee is charged for these services and it is free to residents.

Free legal aid programs

A non-profit law firm makes free legal services available to the elderly, low to moderate income people and others. Turn to MidPenn Legal Services for legal help with a variety of civil matters including, but not limited to: foreclosure filings, family, consumer debt issues, housing, public benefits, bankruptcy, and domestic abuse cases. The non-profit law firm provides free, pro bono legal aid and referrals for various civil matters. 238-4958 x 1132, or click here to learn more on Pennsylvania free legal aid.




Free food, nutrition and groceries

If you need food for your family, Food Bank of State College Area, Inc. can help. The agency provides emergency food and groceries to those people who are in need in the State College and Upper Bald Eagle Valley area, and they also support other food pantries and distribution centers that are located throughout Centre County. 234-2310


By Jon McNamara

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