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Eastern Georgia assistance programs.

Financial help for bills, rent, foreclosure, and other needs

The Central Savannah River Area Economic Opportunity Authority administers assistance programs for those faced with poverty and the low income. Some assistance they can provide themselves, and other aid is offered from referrals. The services below are offered.

  • Head Start Program – This can help children aged five or younger. The program can provide comprehensive quality services to preschool children and their families. The resources focus on helping kids get ready for school, including educational support, health care, immunizations, and food.
  • Free energy conservation measures are provided by the Weatherization Assistance Program.
    Income eligible households can receive upgrades and improvements to their home, including energy-efficiency updates such as insulation or windows. Weatherization will focus on families with children, the elderly, and people with disabilities, provided their income meets certain standards.
  • Central Savannah River Area Economic Opportunity Authority, Inc. also processes applications for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. This can help pay winter heating and summer cooling bills.
  • Programs for the homeless are administered. The non-profit provides low income and subsidized housing, as well as support services to currently homeless families. Meet with a social worker to sign up for employment assistance, childcare, transportation, life skills, and more. A housing program for the disabled is known as Shelter Plus Care Program. This can offer permanent housing, referrals, information and other support services that assist the homeless disabled in maintaining their independence, paying rent, and support for keeping their current housing.

    People who contact the community action agency for rental assistance or housing programs can access case management, transitional housing, and other supportive services. The programs and the aid is offered for up to 24 months while applicants work towards economic self-sufficiency and gain access to more permanent housing or apartments.




  • Foreclosure prevention, debt management, and home buying programs are all offered by the Central Savannah River Area Economic Opportunity Authority.
  • Foreclosure Prevention and Intervention Counseling – Homeowners who are delinquent on their mortgage may be able to receive assistance. This was created for families who may be facing a foreclosure. Counselors will conduct confidential one-on-one sessions with the homeowner. They will explore the main reasons for the default on the home loan, conduct a detailed budget analysis with the homeowner, verify the amount owed in arrears, and serve as a liaison between the mortgage company, their loan servicer and the homeowner. The counselor will attempt to resolve the delinquency on the mortgage. Receive free, one-on-one assistance in applying for programs such as HomeSafe Georgia and other home loan workout options, including mortgage modifications.
    The Foreclosure Prevention Program is a multiple step process. A trained HUD certified counselor will assist the homeowner in gathering all pertinent information, including information on a clients expenses and income, that will required by the lender for most workout options. Some of what will be explored includes repayment plans, loan modifications, special forbearance, and deed-in-lieu. Some free legal advice may also be offered as well by Georgia Legal Services. Read more on Georgia mortgage assistance.
  • Home Ownership Planning Education (HOPE) is for people looking to buy a home. This includes One-on-One Pre-Purchase Counseling as well as Home Buyer Education Workshops. Many local bankers, real estate agents, and HUD approved housing counselors present information to families across Georgia. Learn about budgeting and money management, first time buyer programs, debt reduction, the mortgage loan process, credit repair. Free sessions and workshops have helped many a person with the buying process.
  • Debt Management/Financial Literacy/Credit/ Budgeting Counseling is extensive and wide ranging. It includes individual computer curriculum, educational workshops, and 1:1 budget counseling. All of this is offered in order to assist persons in becoming more aware of financial matters. The sessions will help decrease the likelihood of identity theft, predatory lending, address payday loans, and improve the participant’s ability to manage financial resources on their own to increase self-sufficiency. One of services in highest demand is how to eliminate payday loans and to end the cycle. Learn more on alternatives to payday loans.

The Central Savannah River Area Economic Opportunity Authority, Inc. (CSRA) is located at 1261 Greene Street, Augusta, Georgia 30903-2704, phone:(706) 722-0493. They serve all counties in the region. Several other emergency assistance programs are offered as well. Click here for more details on financial help from Central Savannah River Area Economic Opportunity Authority.





Neighborhood Service Centers are located across the eastern portion of Georgia. The locations offer low income residents emergency assistance. Resources are offered for free food, eviction prevention, landlord mediation, utility and energy bill assistance, household products, personal care items, and resource locating/referrals. Staff members from the various centers will both establish and coordinate links to social service programs, churches, and non-profits to assure effective delivery of services for the low-income population. Dial 706-722-0493 to find a center near you.

Family Connection Partnership, Inc. - Lincoln County Family Connection is located at 345 Ward Ave., Lincolnton, GA 30817. Phone (706) 359-5766. Some of the services offered include Rent Payment Assistance, information on a job bank, Holiday Gifts/Toys, GED Instruction, and tutoring.

Agape Outreach Ministries is a non-profit that offers emergency utility bill assistance, rental aid, free food, clothing and guidance and pastoral counseling to families in need. Some assistance may be offered for the homebound and seniors too. 317 West Hill St., Thomson, Georgia 30824, dial (706) 597-8800

Manna, Inc. can be called at (706) 595-3138. This non-profit agency offers financial aid to people who reside in McDuffie and Warren Counties Georgia. Emergency services are offered.

McDuffie County Georgia CSRA Human Development Center offers a number of resources to people who are struggling or who need guidance in the community. Call them for energy bill assistance, food pantry, after school program for school age children, and summer meals. 221 Pecan Ave., Thomson, GA 30824, dial (706) 597-2610

Georgia Department of Human Services/Division of Family and Children Services can help people apply for government and public assistance. Most programs are for those faced with poverty or who are very low income. Services include food stamps, WIC, rent help (if have an eviction notice) or utility assistance to prevent a disconnection. All of eastern Georgia is covered. Dial (706)-721-3000.

Society of St. Vincent DePaul offers limited financial assistance for low-income residents, including rent, summer cooling bills, and vouchers for prescription medications. Call (706) 595-9897

Springfield Baptist Church – Assistance programs for families and individuals in need include Rent Payment Assistance, and funds for utilities such as water bills, electricity, and natural gas service. 523 Martin Luther King Jr., St., NE, Thomson, Georgia 30824, call (706) 595-5829

The Salvation Army Wilkes County Unit - Provide counseling and referral. Other resources include emergency assistance to persons in a crisis situation in the areas of lodging, food, clothing, rent, housing and utility bill assistance. Washington Georgia based, dial (706) 678-2818. This is the local center of the country largest charity organization.





Food assistance in eastern Georgia

Free Indeed Ministries, Inc. offers food and other aid. It can provide families in need with meat, canned goods, appliances, clothing, and furniture. All assistance is by referral only. Shadrack St., Waynesboro, GA 30830, phone (706) 554-0618

Sacred Heart Catholic Church – A food pantry is on site. Open to people of all religions. Call (706) 554-2535

Lincoln County Food Pantry is another non-profit to call. Telephone (706) 359-7838

First Baptist Church – Washington Georgia. Address is 105 W. Robert Toombs Ave. Main number (706) 678-2912

Harvest Time Christian Center address is 317 N. Bypass E. Dial (706) 678-5555

There are many other free food pantries, soup kitchens, and food banks in the state and eastern Georgia. Click here for more food banks in Georgia.

Free medical care

Services are provided by Georgia Health Department - East Central Health District. Patients in the region, including Burke County, can receive aid. Services either on site or available by referral are general dentistry, screening, family care, and more. This is a clinic providing a number of medical services which can help people save money on bills. 114 Dogwood Dr., Waynesboro, Georgia 30830, call (706) 554-3456.


By Jon McNamara

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