Find help from Christian Assistance Network.

Christian Assistance Network is a source of information when a family is faced by an emergency. The non-profit organization will try to direct applicants to resources that serve as a hand up, and not a hand out. This is done by the church in an effort to help the client gain long term self-sufficiency.

First and foremost, any financial aid that may be available (which is not common) will be focused on preventing homelessness as well as hunger, which are two critical basic needs. This can be caused by unpaid rent, or utility bills that are due, such as electric or heating. So funds may be available for those expenses. Other uses of financing will be for food and for job training needs, maybe even transportation.

Clients of Christian Assistance Network, also known as CAN, range from senior citizens in Bell County to the unemployed and working poor. There are also resources for the most vulnerable, including disabled and single parents with children. However, anyone can request help, regardless of their religion or other life circumstances.

Emergency funds from Christian Assistance Network for housing expenses

CAN emergency eviction prevention provides crisis intervention assistance as well as one time financial support to qualified individuals and families. This touches upon many things, including shelter as well as emergency financial assistance or loans for back rent. The homeless can also apply for funds for a security deposit or first month's rent payment in Killeen.

As noted, sometimes a landlord can evict a tenant due to unpaid utility bills. In these cases, help is also available for payments, including cash grants from LIHEAP. All of this is combined with advice and mediation services.

Christian Assistance Network provides coordination of services to homeless individuals and families, ranging from single moms with children to veterans. Resources include outreach, medium term transitional housing, and permanent supportive units. These short term shelter services are provided primarily through partnerships and contracts with both the government as well as community non-profit organizations.




Short term shelter is available in Bell County and Killeen. Staff from the church will interview the client and assess their needs. Support is arranged based on the results. Emergency shelter capacity in Bell County for individuals expands during the winter months, as there is a higher need for help during those time frames. Case management services are provided to all homeless clients to link clients to needed services, including substance abuse treatment, employment, housing referrals and application to government entitlements such as section 8.

The Senior Nutrition Program provides the elderly and their spouses low cost meals in congregate (group) settings. Not only can they get low cost food, but there are also a number of other activities held for seniors. This ranges for workshops on applying for prescription assistance to Medicare. Other services include nutrition education, screening & counseling.

Christian Assistance Network also serves as a central contact for applications to free home delivered meals. Staff are involved in referring seniors to Meals on Wheels that serve their addresses. The focus is on offering nutritious food for persons that are home bound, including those with diabetes, heart disease and hypertension.

All meals served by volunteers, that are screened by Christian Assistance Network or other agencies, meet federal USDA standards that include each meal providing at least 1/3 of the recommended dietary allowances for seniors. They will also comply with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The federal government Child Care Subsidy is a state of Texas and federal government benefit. Vouchers are used to assist eligible families, including those from the military. The program will be in effect contributing to the cost of child care, if the parent is in job training or working. Only one application is needed, and low income and other guidelines need to be met.





Free holiday and school supply programs

Each year, school supply and Christmas drives are held. Christian Assistance Network will also coordinate with local charities, churches, and even Elementary Schools on these projects. They will obtain a list of supplies needed for the upcoming holiday season or school year, and then try to fulfill this need.

CAN will ask that these items be donated by people from across Bell County Texas before school starts, or before the holiday rolls around. Staff work to collect new and gently used coats for distribution to those in need of winter attire, and other events are held too. There are also Christmas Toy Give-Away events held in the city of Killeen.

Many of these seasonal programs even run throughout the year. The charity will collect toys, notebooks and other items. Many members of churches and other groups also stop by and assist in these various projects. The non-profit will work to provide Christmas gifts, meals and stocking stuffers for as many children as supply allows.

The network is based at 201 East Avenue D, Killeen, Texas 76541. They will support the disadvantaged, regardless of income. Dial (254) 634-0178.




By Jon McNamara

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