Friends In Deed assistance programs in Washtenaw County.

Various basic needs can be addressed by the non-profit Washtenaw County agency. The organization works with local religious congregations and churches to help people in need, regardless of their background or culture. What may be provided includes free food, clothing, direct financial assistance for bills and rent, and other basic needs.

Friends In Deed will partner with the community to provide the low income with the support they need. Some examples of resources are critical financial assistance, furniture, congregational services, applications for public benefits and agency referrals. Dozens of volunteers from churches and area congregations participate in providing services and also answering requests for assistance.

Clearinghouse referrals is the name of information and guidance offered to clients. Those who qualify can learn about social services and emergency financial assistance programs in the Washtenaw County area. For people seeking help, they can receive appropriate referrals to churches and applicable assistance programs. They also distribute resource guides for free or low-cost clothing, household goods, and medical supplies. Call (734) 484-4357.

Direct Financial Assistance is available from congregations, non-profit community resources or from their own FID Direct Assistance Fund. Money can be used to pay for unmet basic needs such as utility bills, rent or car repairs. Funds and cash grants are also provided for meeting health care and employment related needs. Some other examples of what the Friends In Deed aid can pay for is prescriptions, transportation costs, medical needs, housing and a wide variety of other miscellaneous needs not met by other county social service agencies. Call (734) 484-4357 for more information on this option.

Friends In Deed, or FID, operates a Furniture Program. This will match donors from Washtenaw with needy families. Volunteers from the non-profit operate the furniture phone line and also provide pick-up and delivery assistance in cases where the recipient is not able to pick up on the furniture on their own. Beds, cribs, and other gently used goods are some examples of the donations. (734) 484-7607.




While not as common, Car Repair and Donation Programs may be available as the result of grants funds. For those low income qualified families that need transportation for work or training, very minor car repairs are done. As noted, this is limited and is focused on those who use their cars for transportation to regular doctor's appointments or work. FID may also have referrals as there are a couple other programs in Washtenaw County Michigan that may occasionally be able to help pay for auto repairs. FID also accepts donated cars and this may be provided to the community if someone needs transportation for work. Dial (734) 484-4357.

Annual Christmas assistance, Holiday Bed and Crib Drives are held. The organizations seeks people to purchase a new box spring, mattress, frame, bedbug covers, crib and/or mattress for a baby or person without a healthy sleeping environment. Not only that, but Friends in Deed will also generally have information on other holiday assistance programs, gifts, and meals that are offered by local partners such as the Salvation Army. So referrals may be provided. Call (734) 484-7607.

Volunteers from the churches and congregations provide the needy, seniors, and disabled with a wide variety of services on an emergency basis. Some of what may be arranged includes minor household repairs, Appliance Repair, help for moving, and much more. Please volunteer and give back to the community if you can. Call (734) 484-4357 for details.

Friends In Deed, or FID, is based at 1196 Ecorse Rd., Ypsilanti, Michigan 48198. While they work with many volunteers and churches, the main office phone number is 734.484.HELP.



By Jon McNamara

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