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Chicago Salvation Army emergency assistance programs.

People in need, no matter what type of assistance they seek, will often contact the Chicago Salvation Army community centers. A number of programs and social services are administered from the centers. Some resources, while limited, may be able to provide families in Chicago with assistance in paying their utility bills and rent, free food, vouchers for medications, Christmas toys or school supplies as well as educational and recreational assistance for their children, and much more. These locations in both the city and Cook County are the heart and soul of the Salvation Army

The services provide coverage to the entire greater Chicago and Cook County region, which can include portions of both northwestern Indiana and northern Illinois. Every year tens of thousands of families from the city of Chicago and those nearby regions receive assistance from the non-profit agency. Individuals of all religions, background, and ages receive help. However priority is given to seniors, low income families with children, and the disabled.

Family Services Program

This is the name of the primary resource offered by the Chicago Salvation Army. The non-profit will serve families, individuals, and other members of the community by helping them deal with a number of challenges. Anyone can seek help, regardless of age, income, socio-economic status or religion. That being said, since there are limited resources, those people in Cook County Illinois who are deemed to be most vulnerable receive priority, and this includes senior citizens, the disabled, and families with children. Family and community services and assistance can help with one or more of the following.

Short Term Emergency Support Services. This resource can provide emergency rental and/or utility bill assistance. Applicants will usually need to be facing an eviction, or shut off of their utilities. The primary objective is to prevent homelessness in Chicago, and people can be considered homeless if they do not have utility service.

Ways to Work and free cars – This is a transportation assistance program. The Chicago Salvation Army may be able to work with this national, non-profit Ways to Work to help people buy or repair a car. Low interest loans, or in some cases cash grants, may be provided. The car needs to be used to get back and forth to work.




There are other ways to get a free or low cost car for local travel in Cook County or work. They often help single moms or working parents. Find additional sources for a free car or programs that can be used to acquire an auto.

Senior Services – This can range from cooling bill assistance, free fans, and places to go to get out of the summer heat, to activities such as home delivered meals and centers for seniors to go for various social activities. Meals for seniors and the elderly from Golden Diner Centers are also offered for people who are 60 years of age and older. Meals are served daily, and spouses can be served as well.

Chicago Family Management Program - Provides basic health care and screening for women who are pregnant or who have a child one year of age or younger. Services include case management, health assessment and referrals, home visits, and assessment.

Food pantries – Many locations in Cook County either distribute food, or have information on local churches and charities across Chicago that can provide free or low cost groceries. There are also locations that have perishable food stuffs, baby formula for new single moms, and meals. Some Salvation Army centers also run soup kitchens or give noontime meals to the low income as well. Or clients can find other Illinois food pantries near them.

The Salvation Army runs Head Start in the region. Programs will help a child learn early and get prepared for school. Other services and resources offered include free medical and dental care, pre-school programming, food, and nutritional support. Parents can gain access to social services and job programs too.

Clothing, gifts, and holiday assistance – The cold Chicago Illinois winters mean that many kids and families need help during the winter. Programs that may assist include Angel Tree (for gifts and toys), Coats for Kids (for winter clothes and coats) and a number of holiday assistance programs. These can provide free meals and food around Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Some volunteers may even deliver meals to the homebound.





Angel Tree program can help provide holiday and Christmas joy to those children who have gifts, toys or presents to open at Christmas. This program relies on donations from the community, and it will help provide gifts, toys, coats, shoes, and more to children and infants in need. Senior citizens can also sign up and receive needy items. The Salvation Army Angel Tree program provides people throughout the greater Chicago Metropolitan area the ability to help local families and children in need during the holidays. Specific needs of clients are fulfilled, so it is not the same as a general toy drive.

Affordable Day Care is coordinated by the Salvation Army. Lower to moderate income families in Chicago Illinois and Cook County whose parents are working, in job training or who are in school and can receive affordable and the finest quality day care for their child.

Social Services – Depending on the location, some Chicago locations have on site Salvation Army caseworkers that provide counseling and casework services, including job placement strategies, financial planning assistance, and emotional support in cases of domestic abuse or some other form of crisis. Or get referrals to local resources. Read more on City of Chicago emergency rent and financial assistance programs.

Locations Chicago Illinois Salvation Army centers

Chicago Harbor Light
Address is 1515 W Monroe St.
Chicago, Illinois 60607-2407
Phone number - 312-421-5753

Englewood Corps Community Center including Social Services from the Red Shield Center
945 West 69th Street, Chicago, IL 60621
Phone - (773) 358-3200

Irving Park Corps Community Center
Location - 4056 N. Pulaski Road
Chicago, IL 60641

LaVillita Corps Community Center
3621 W. 24th Street
Chicago, IL 60623
Dial 773-257-0700

Chicago Lawn Corps Community Center
5950 S. Spaulding Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60629-3250
Main number - 773-434-0488

Mayfair Community Church
5020 N. Pulaski Road
Chicago, IL 60630-2788
Dial - 773-794-6210





Midway Citadel Corps Community Center
Main address - 5036-52 W. 47th Street
Chicago, IL 60638-2000
Call 773-838-8005 for information

Midwest Corps Community Center
20 S. Campbell Avenue
Chicago, IL 60612-2942
Telephone number - 312-733-480

Ray and Joan Kroc Corps and Community Center in Chicago
1250 W. 119th Street
Chicago, IL 60643

Chicago Temple Corps Community Center
1 N. Ogden Blvd.
Chicago, Illinois 60607-1815
Dial 312-492-6803

Chicago Heights Service Center
1313 Hilltop Avenue
Chicago Heights, IL 60411
Tel: 708-754-3062

East Chicago Corps Community Center
Location is 513 West Chicago Ave.
East Chicago, IN 46312-3284
Call 219-398-2939


By Jon McNamara

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