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Assistance programs Lake County Illinois and Waukegan.

Find information on several charities, churches, social services as well as the local community action agency that give financial assistance or free stuff in Lake County. Everything from rent help to low interest loans, grants for paying utility bills, free food, and much more. Find where to get financial help near you in Waukegan and Lake County Illinois as well as other resources for low-income families.

Find how to apply for financial aid and government assistance programs they offer, as well as find their contact info below. There are also social services and free items in Lake County Illinois. There are charities that give out free school supplies, furniture, diapers, or Christmas toys. Non-profits also coordinate programs such as free daycare, legal aid, as well as debt or foreclosure counseling.

Community Action Program emergency financial assistance program

This is offered by the Community Action Partnership of Lake County. Financial assistance and cash grants are provided on a one-time basis to individuals and families who qualify for the emergency program. The funds will be used to pay an energy bill, rent, or for a health care expense or medical bill.

  • The agency also operates a Food Pantry and a Thrift Shop on site that assist with providing free clothing and other housing needs. These facilities are open to clients based on need or through referral from other local social service agencies or charities.
  • Energy bill assistance - LIHEAP and weatherization is also offered by community action. Assistance for energy bills is available in two separate components from Community Action Partnership of Lake County. They are noted below. (847) 249-4330.
    The LIHEAP program was designed to assist low to moderate income households with paying for a portion of their winter energy bills and expenses. The LIHEAP program provides a one-time annual cash grant to qualified. The grant is used to pay heating and utility bills.
    Weatherization is a federal government funded assistance program that was designed to aid low-income families, the elderly and the disabled by reducing home energy costs. The Weatherization upgrades and work will be performed on the homes of qualified, low-income families. It is free to qualified families, and will help them save hundreds of dollars per year.
    The program includes insulating attics, repairing and replacing heating systems and furnaces, weather-stripping, installing storm windows, caulking and making other minor home repairs or improvements. These home improvements will in effect increase the energy efficiency of the home, and they will thereby reduce the amount of energy that is needed to either heat and cool homes. Contact the community action agency to apply.




  • Numerous other assistance programs are administered. Some, such as LIHEAP, are referenced below. Other services may include information on job training or educational resources, including Head Start. They also help working parents pay for day care, including giving vouchers and/or subsidized day care, most of which are government funded. More on free daycare.

Additional housing resources are in Lake County Illinois, and those include transitional housing or funds to pay a security deposit. The main address is 213 W Water St, Waukegan, IL 60085. In some cases the community action agency will issue a loan for certain expenses. Dial (847) 249-4330, or find more details on Lake County community action programs.

Lake County mortgage, rent, energy bill, free food and foreclosure assistance

Catholic Charities also has limited funds that will help pay a heating or utility bill, if the customer is facing a disconnection of their service. A number of additional resources are offered to families that are faced with a crisis, and the organization will also offer case management, social services, and information on employment opportunities. They also help immigrants in Lake County IL as well as single moms or those facing DV.

While funding is limited, and the Catholic Charities in Lake County receives a number of requests every month, they do their best to meet the needs of the less fortunate. Other services include free food, programs for seniors (including medications and home delivered meals), free furniture or household stuff, and immigration assistance. The location is 671 S Lewis Ave, Waukegan, IL 60085. Call (847) 782-4000. More on Lake County Illinois Catholic Charities.

Homeowners who are facing foreclosure have resources as well. The Mortgage Foreclosure Help Desk was created with the assistance of the Lake County Bar Association (phone (847) 244-3143). The Help Desk has volunteer paralegals and lawyers that are stationed outside of Lake County Illinois courtrooms where foreclosure cases are heard. These attorneys will assist those homeowners with the foreclosure if they have no private counsel. Learn more about other Illinois foreclosure assistance programs.

Another government agency to call is Lake County Housing Authority. They provide Rental Assistance Programs. Mortgage and Foreclosure Counseling and Family Self-sufficiency Programs. Section 8 is also administered. Some disabled or elderly people, or veterans, can get emergency section 8 or affordable housing without waiting. Dial (847) 223-1170. Or find more on Illinois section 8 housing vouchers.





Affordable Housing Corporation of Lake County also provides housing counseling and foreclosure prevention services. They work with property owners/landlords and tenants on affordable homes, apartments, and accommodations. Dial (847) 263-7478.

Rent help from government grants - There are a few local organization to turn to. They include the Community Action Partnership of Lake County (see above), Catholic Charities (call (847) 782-4000), Maristella, the Lake County Housing Authority (dial (847) 223-1170), and the Salvation Arm (see below).

They will provide help with rent, security deposits, and other housing expenses as funding allows.  Programs include free ESG hardship grants and more., Another option is Prairie State Legal Services (dial (847) 662-6925) which provides legal counseling for those who are facing an eviction. Find their phone numbers at bottom.

  • Additional rental resources - While there are three programs/agencies listed above, tenants have several other organizations that they can turn to when they need help. Services offered include homeless prevention, emergency cash for paying rent and deposits, and much more. Read more Lake County Illinois rent assistance.

Government assistance - The Lake County Department Human Services is the main social service agency for the county. The center can help people of all backgrounds and situations, including the unemployed, seniors, poor, disabled and very low income. They can help people apply for various federal government programs such as LIHEAP, SNAP food stamps and Head Start.

Some aid is administered locally as well, and that can include housing, rent help, free food, and even telephone assistance. Or learn about Medicaid, prescription drug vouchers and other government aid. Continue with public assistance in Lake County.

VOA of Illinois operates in the region and in Kane County. The focus is on housing assistance, such as transitional units, and referrals to local, non-profit emergency rent and security deposit assistance. They help the homeless and case managers work to prevent evictions. Other services include job placement, help for seniors, Christmas toys for children and more. They also help veterans and people with a disability get housing. Learn more on Illinois Volunteers of America.

Maristella can provide support to mothers with children and single women in Lake County. Resources offered include hotel vouchers, rental subsidies, security deposits, or free emergency food and clothing. There is also information on work at home jobs for single moms as well as other employment assistance. Also get help finding housing or educational services. Christmas and Thanksgiving meals and baskets may be offered too. Address is 745 N Milwaukee Ave, Libertyville, IL 60048, call (847) 367-5360

There are also rent and housing programs for single mothers, both in Lake County and nationwide. Charities and the government work to prevent homelessness of the children. Find a list of rental assistance grants for single mothers.





Barrington Area Council on Aging – The non-profit can help seniors and their caregivers in Lake County. Programs offered include Meals on Wheels, senior lunches, as well as free Medicare Prescription Part D consultations, and applications for the Illinois Circuit Breaker property tax assistance program. The aging office can also provide information, in-home assessment visits, a recreational activity program, and AARP income tax assistance and advice.

Other potential resources include a Pharmaceutical Assistance program and vehicle license discount. the elderly and their spouses may qualify. Address is 6000 Garland Lane, Barrington, IL 60010. Call (847) 381-5030 for intake, or find free transportation for seniors.

Lake County Veterans Assistance Commission can help military members, veterans, and their immediate family members. What is offered includes food, advocacy, rent and mortgage assistance. There are applications to HUD VASH and the SSVF program.

Or low-income or homeless veterans can get heating bill help, aid to the medically indigent, and more. While resources are limited, those who qualify may also access emergency dental treatment, prescription eye glasses, and help for burial of indigent Veterans. The office is at 501 N Riverside Dr, Gurnee, IL 60031. Call (847) 377-3344

Lambs Fold of Lake County - The charity provides housing and self-sufficiency to the disabled and women in the community. There are a wide variety of solutions available, including shelter to more medium term, low income apartments that can be rented out. Other services include educational support, tutoring, job placement, and legal guidance. Read more Lambs Fold Housing programs.

Salvation Army Stores of Lake County - The charity provides social services from churches and faith based groups in Lake County Illinois. For those facing an emergency, such as eviction or utility disconnection, then referrals may be available to financial support to help with rent or electric bills. Vouchers may also be provided to pay for medications, or a day or so in a motel as part of disaster relief.

Other programs from the charity can include thrift stores and free food pantries, Christmas assistance, transitional housing, free back to School supplies and more. Volunteers can even help with home repair or meal deliveries for the homebound. 428 South Sheridan Road, Waukegan, Illinois 60085, call (847) 623-6170, or continue Lake County Salvation Army.

Free assistance for basic needs is available from non-profits or charities. Struggling families can turn to clothing closets, furniture banks or thrift stores for school supplies, Christmas assistance, furniture, and general clothes. Of particular focus is on assisting children with winter coats or offering items such as diapers or furniture to new, low income moms. Or get furniture such as beds, mattresses, appliances and more. More on Lake County free furniture, school supplies or clothing closets.

Family First Center of Lake County offers several recreational programs for families as well as referrals to other non-profits and government agencies. Examples include information on employment and job training, financial assistance for housing, utility assistance, and education. Other support includes help for victims of domestic violence, counseling, a health care center, and more. The location is 202 South Genesee Street, Waukegan, Illinois 60085. Call (847) 244-4374.





Foreclosure and eviction help - The programs known as homeless prevention and rapid rehousing is used in this capacity. The assistance available includes, but is not limited too, free motel vouchers, rental or utility deposit help, legal support, and shelter. Clients in Lane County include the following.

  • Single mothers.
  • Veterans can apply for homeless prevention.
  • The unemployed, working poor, and immigrants may be assisted.
  • There are other programs available, and read more Lake County homeless prevention.

Churches and Family Services operates across Illinois. The agency runs several programs for the poor, low income, and homeless in Lake County and other cities. There are some regional food pantries and clothing closets that may have free groceries and basic needs. Supporting Hispanics is another resource offered by churches, including Lutheran Services. The charity also runs a program known as Ways to Work which may have low interest rate car loans and even repairs to autos. Continue reading Churches and Family Services.

Get free help at the holidays. Non-profits and local towns in Lake County may offer free toys or meals at Christmas to income qualified families. Other assistance may be a basket of food, stockings with presents or home delivered meal to a senior citizens for Thanksgiving or Christmas as well. More on free holiday programs in Lane County.

Lake County Illinois town and local organizations that provide general assistance

Each and every town has their own resources (for people in those towns). They can give food, clothes, funds to help pay bills (to stop homelessness) and more. There is also self-sufficiency provided, including free clothes or gasoline vouchers. Or get baby supplies, free diapers or formula in Lake County IL and more. The towns and agencies in Lake County are as follows.

General relief from a town offers limited cash aid from a program known as General Emergency Assistance. Town residents only can get immediate rental, heating, and utility bill help as well as other grants can be provided for people with a shut off letter or who are facing eviction and have a 5 day notice. There is help for the unemployed and people recovering from a disaster.

Free adult clothing or transportation to a job may be offered as well in order to main employment. Financial planning, budgeting, and credit repair classes may be offered by the township for people in Lake County.

  • Zion Township Address is 1015 27th Street, Zion, Illinois 60099, call (847) 872-2811. Note the programs are only for residents of that town.
  • City and town of Waukegan is at 149 S Genesee St., Waukegan, IL  847-244-4900
  • Moraine Township - 800 Central Avenue, Highland Park, Illinois 60035. Phone: 847-432-3240
  • Warren Township Center is at 17801 W Washington Street, Gurnee, IL 60031-5311. Call 847-244-1101

Free health care and prescription drugs in Lake County IL

Two charities and non-profit organizations to turn to for help include HealthReach, Inc (dial  (847) 666-3494) as well as Catholic Charities (dial (847) 782-4000). Both of these groups may be able to refer people to prescription assistance programs from pharmaceutical companies. They also arrange free medical care for the poor or people with no insurance. Dental checkups and basic screenings are offered too.

Or they may also be able to provide patents with grants or other forms of financial assistance to pay for prescription drugs. HealthReach can also offer health screenings as well as diagnostic services. Click here to learn more on Patient Assistance Programs.

Another community clinic to contact is HealthReach (Open Door) - Mundelein. They provide Prescription/Medicine Assistance, Health Care, Counseling, and Prevention. Dial 847-360-8800.

Lake County Health Department & Community Health Center has a location in North Chicago as well as Waukegan Illinois. The facility offers low income and the under and uninsured with numerous medical and health care programs. Receive medical examinations, Prescription Drug and Medicine Assistance; Programs for Senior Citizens - Services; and also Well Baby Clinics. Dial 847-377-8400, or also find information on Illinois medical debt collection laws.

Several other free or low cost medical and dental clinics operate in the region. Low income and uninsured Lake County Illinois patients may be able to receive affordable medical care and health services. Medications and mental health counseling may be offered too. Find details on clinics and health centers. More on free community clinics in Lake County.







Food and free groceries in Lake County

Northern Illinois Food Bank Lake County Branch, which is based in Park City, and can be reached at (847) 336-3663 provides food, groceries, and other aid. Also get Meals on Wheels, SNAP food stamps and other food programs. The address is 440 Keller Dr, Park City, IL 60085.

Other places to call for free food, vouchers, or food commodities include Waukegan based Christian Fellowship Church (call (847) 336-1815), Northern Chicago Emmanuel Faith Bible Christian Center (phone (847) 473-4854), The Chapel of Grayslake at 25270 West IL Route 60 phone (dial (847) 201-2777), and also Holy Family Food Pantry ((847) 623-2112).

There are many others, but these are just a few examples. Click here for the phone numbers and addresses of more food distribution centers, pantries, soup centers, and charities. Locate free food pantries in Lake County.

Free credit counseling and agencies that can help people get out of debt

If you need help with getting out of debt or getting your financial future under control, call Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Lake County at 815-338-5757. The agency offers such services as free credit counseling and repair to the low income.

The agency is a non-profit that provide both free and/or affordable programs. They can also help people deal with credit card and medical debts, as well as provide bankruptcy advice. Or learn about refinancing a mortgage, saving money, paying down auto loans and more. Continue to find how to save money fast on a low-income.


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