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Craven County assistance programs.

Help with bills, information on assistance programs, and counseling

The first place to turn to for aid in New Bern and Craven County North Carolina is the local community action agency, the Coastal Community Action, Inc. Call them at (252) 223-1630. Below you will find information and details on the programs and services they offer low income individuals.

  • Self-sufficiency program - This service that is offered by the agency was designed to make a high quality, measurable impact in the lives of individuals and families in New Bern and Craven County. The programs and services offered are comprehensive and include direct financial assistance with job search and job retention, possible help for paying rent, tuition, books and supplies, information on how to get mortgage help in North Carolina, child care, housing, money management, debt-elimination, work materials, credit repair, supplies and uniforms, crisis intervention, and transportation assistance.
  • Heating and Air Repair or Replacement Program (HARRP) - This program will help people deal with their heating and cooling units, and help is provided to either repair or replacing the cooling or heating system. the program work in concert with the Weatherization Assistance Program to help people save on their energy bills.
  • Several different housing repair programs and weatherization - For example, the federal government funded weatherization assistance program was created to reduce the energy cost (both heating and cooling bills) of low income, disabled, and elderly individuals. Weatherization refers to the insulation of attics, floors, walls, duct sealing, water heaters and pipes, and the performance of air sealing with the use of a blower door, all in an effort to lower energy bills. Other programs include the Housing and Home Improvement (HHI) as well as the Urgent Repair Program.
  • Family Development Services - This is another program run that helps people find and keep employment, assist them with starting a small business, college education resources, developing positive parenting skills, financial literacy, effective parent-teacher communication, stress management, healthy relationships, mental health resources, free legal aid services and home ownership preparation.





As indicated, the Coastal Community Action, Inc. can be reached at (252) 223-1630. Call for information on self-sufficiency and other support, or click here.

Craven County Department of Social Services processes and accepts applications for government aid, with a focus on protecting children. Examples of what can be applied to are some or all of the following programs.

Energy assistance from various sources, such as LIHEAP, that pay a limited portion of the utility bills of those facing disconnection. Weatherization can help very low income save money.

Federal government funded resources are available across Craven County. These include applications for Medicaid, Work First Cash Assistance, Food Stamps, Energy Bill Assistance, Surplus Food Distributions, and Special Assistance for Home Care.

The office is a great place for referrals. Get information on everything from local community clinics to food pantries and information on thrift stores or non-profits like the Salvation Army.

The Department of Social Services is located at 2818 Neuse Boulevard in New Bern, North Carolina 28561. Call (252) 636-4900 for more information or intake.

New Bern Salvation Army supports people across the county. This center is the local branch of one of the world’s leading non-profit organizations. They administer several resources for senior citizens, the working poor, and low income families in Craven County. Case managers from the center can help individuals apply for emergency financial aid for paying rent or energy bills. Other assistance includes free food from a pantry and basic needs such as clothing. Holiday support is also a focus and the location can offer free Thanksgiving or Christmas meals, gifts for children, and more. Or explore short term housing and emergency shelter. The bottom line is a host of services are available. Continue reading.





Free clothes and basic needs can be met by charities and clothing distribution centers. The eastern part of the state, including Pitt County, has several churches and other organizations that run thrift stores and/or clothing banks. The locations support the less fortunate and children. While the items will vary by site, they have been known to offer Christmas assistance, general clothes, school supplies and backpacks, and more. Some centers, though while not common, may even offer emergency financial aid. More.

Living Waters Ministry Center (Outreach Ministries) operates a free food pantry and provides heating/cooling bill assistance to income qualified residents of Havelock/Harlow. 925 East Main Street, Suite 20, Havelock, NC 28532, call (252) 447-5190.

Merci Clinic is a non-profit community clinic for the low income and uninsured. It can offer free healthcare, medications, dental checkups and more for medically uninsured children and adults in Craven County. Patients are supported regardless of race, age, gender, or other factors. 1315 Tatum Drive, New Bern, North Carolina 28560, telephone (252) 633-1599.

Free food pantries and meals in Craven County

Religious Community Services - Soup Kitchen/Food Pantry is a non-profit charity organization that the low income, poor, and needy with some of the following. The organization runs a soup kitchen, distributes groceries from a food pantry, and offer emergency assistance of various kinds. Craven County DSS helps coordinate the program. New Bern, North Carolina based. Dial (252) 633-2767.




Word of God Christian Center Food Pantry offers meals, canned goods, Christmas assistance, clothing, and more. (252) 672-0072

Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina can help with applying for SNAP food stamps and government commodities. Address is 205 South Glenburnie Road, New Bern, NC 28560, call (252) 514-2006.

Additional Craven County food banks - The above listing is just a sampling. Residents have several other locations they can turn to for help. Whether it is a church or maybe a government program, such as food stamps, there are solutions to be explored before hunger becomes an issue. More information.


By Jon McNamara

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