Public aid and assistance in Lake County Illinois.

Families and people who need support, including cash assistance, food, or medical care, may qualify for one of several Lake County public assistance programs. Sign up for programs including cash grants, SNAP, and medical bill assistance, among other aid. The main place to go for information or to apply is the DHS Family Community Resource Center.

The federal government and state of Illinois Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program can help pay for heating bills and winter energy expenses. The program will pay qualified families a onetime public funded cash grant for their energy costs.

The main Lake County public assistance programs that disburse cash are below.

TANF/Temporary Assistance for Needy Families will help pregnant families and women, and can provide those who qualify with short term cash benefits and aid. Grants can help pay for basic needs including food, shelter, expenses other than medical, utilities, and more. The Illinois Aid to the Aged, Blind, and Disabled (AABD) is another main public assistance program for older Lake County residents and the disabled who need cash. Another option is Earnfare, which can help adults who do not have custody of their children and who also receive food stamps or SNAP benefits.

Case Management is also offered along with public assistance. Social workers coordinate health and social services in order to promote child development, healthy pregnancy, and other services such as job training or employment. State of Illinois Welcoming Centers also administer community resources, health care, employment training, and educational services, and services are offered in both English and Spanish.

Some of the food assistance programs in Lake County are as follows. SNAP, which is also commonly called food Stamps, can help low income families buy healthy foods. Women, Infants, and Children, or WIC, can help new mothers, pregnant women and young children buy groceries, formula, and items for their needs. An emergency food programs also operates, and this resource is paid for by the USDA. It helps lower to moderate income needy people by providing them free food.





A similar service is Farmer's Market Nutrition Program (FMNP), which allows people to buy fresh, nutritious fruits, vegetables, and herbs from roadside stands and farmers' markets in Lake County. The DHS office can refer residents to some of those locations in the region, as there are a number of farmers markets that operate throughout the year. Read more on SNAP food stamps at Farmers Markets.

Telephone assistance is offered for low-income consumers, and they may qualify for public assistance to help pay for monthly charges on their bills as well as installation of service. In some cases there may also be a free cell phone given to them, however this is not as common. The programs are known as Link-Up and Lifeline. Find more details on telephone assistance programs.

Head Start and the child care assistance program are offered in Illinois. They can provide low-income, working families with access to affordable and quality child care. Government funds are used to pay a portion of your costs, however families will still be required to pay a portion of their bills as well and complement this public assistance program.

Head Start is offered for children in Lake County Illinois, and it will prepare them for school, offer food, health, nutrition, and other aid. It is offered alongside Migrant Head Start, which is for migrant and seasonal farm workers and can provide them public aid, health care, and education type services. Both of these are for low-income families with young children.

Housing, homeless, and rental assistance programs are available. Examples of Lake County social services and resources include below.

Homeless Prevention can help stabilize families and individuals in their existing apartments or homes and help people find and pay for secure, affordable housing. The federal government funded Emergency Food & Shelter program gives immediate rent and other assistance to persons at risk of becoming homeless or currently homeless persons. Supportive Housing is another public assistance program to those who are in danger of homelessness.

Homeless Youth Services work to address a crisis and meet the immediate survival needs (clothing, food and shelter) of youth and help them in becoming self-sufficient.




Residents with disabilities have a couple resources available for them. They include In-Home Supports as well as Residential Living Arrangements. Both are social services/housing programs and can ensure the disabled get the care they need. They are paid for using public money, and is the In-Home support is not an option, there are other resources that offer disability assistance that struggling families can try.

The county has a Domestic Violence Victim Services unit/program. This provides confidential and free services to help domestic violence victims attain self sufficiency and safety. Outreach, social services, and more is offered.

Family Planning is available, it provides social, medical and educational services related to the spacing of pregnancy, avoidance, achievement, and timing of it.

The Department Human Services Family Community Resource Center in Lake County is located at 3235 W Belvidere Rd, Park City, Illinois 60085. Call (847) 336-5212.

By Jon McNamara

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