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Assistance programs Lorain County.

Find how to get financial assistance with bills and everyday expenses in Lorain County. Non-profit agencies, charities, and government agencies offer people in need grants to pay utility and heating bills, rent help, or offer free food or mortgage help. Get details on foreclosure prevention, debt help, and even programs to help individuals find jobs in Elyria and the Lorain County area.

There are many low income assistance programs available. Or find how to get free money or benefits from the government or non-profits. A number of grants or even free stuff offered. Whether social services, government grant money, Meals on Wheels or vouchers for gasoline or a motel or hotel, assistance is  available in Lorain County/

Financial help with utility bills, rent, mortgage, and more in Lorain County

Another place to turn to for housing assistance is the Neighborhood House Association. They offer eviction as well as homeless prevention programs which will provide rent and even mortgage assistance, upon funding availability. They provide grants to help pay delinquent rent and mortgages. The goal is to prevent eviction or foreclosure. Call this agency at 440-277-9272.

The Lorain County Community Action Agency administers several different assistance programs. They can also direct people to other government programs as well as charities if they can’t offer the help themselves.

  • Job skills development- The LCCAA Community Learning and Technology Center (CLTC) can help people can skills that can help them find a job, or advance in their current role.
  • Housing and foreclosure prevention- They are a HUD certified site. Among other homeowner resources offered, they offer foreclosure prevention and default counseling. They can also provide mediation services to the homeowner and lender as a means for intervention. They can also advise on reverse mortgages, first time buyer programs, and credit counseling. Find more Ohio mortgage programs.




  • Home Weatherization Assistance Program - This federal government funded program, which also goes by HWAP, energy assistance program that was designed to increase the energy efficiency of dwellings owned or occupied by income-eligible residents. The program is free to qualified families. It will lower participants’ household energy expenditures and bills, and also improve participants’ health and safety.
  • Home Energy Assistance Program- The HEAP program provides a one-time utility or heating bill payment to qualified households who are faced with a service disconnection or threat of disconnection to their home energy source. The HEAP program was created to help eligible low and moderate income Lorain County residents pay for their home energy costs.
  • Credit and debt help - The community action agency also offers a credit workshop. This is designed to help people eliminate debt, educate consumers on fair credit reporting, improving and maintaining strong credit, and correcting errors. Click here for additional debt assistance programs.
  • Other aid- They also offer an emergency food program, as well as grants and low interest loans that can be used to repair and modernize homes.

Call the Lorain County Community Action Agency 440-245-2009 for more information or to apply for aid. Elyria Ohio based.

Catholic Charities Services of Lorain County (phone (440) 244-9915) offers several programs, one of which is one that it serves as an application site for the state of Ohio Housing Services Program. This is basically a multi-agency rent, heating and utility bill payment assistance program that was designed to prevent homelessness in the community. Applicants to the program must be willing to participate in money management and debt counseling. Funding is limited and may not always be available.

Lorain County Catholic Charity churches offer other social services too. Whether it is free food or clothes, or low cost legal aid to immigrants, single moms, or refugees to the county, help is offered. They also offer GED instruction, a food pantry, and Thanksgiving and holiday meals. Read Catholic Charity programs in Lorain County.





North Ridgeville Community Care has very limited funds but it may be able to provide rent payment assistance and grants for people who are at risk of eviction without any type of housing assistance. Call (440) 353-9716.

Oberlin Community Services (phone (440) 774-6579) offers both mortgage and rent payment assistance for low income families and people who are at risk of eviction or who are facing a foreclosure without assistance. Unfortunately funds are very limited and may not always be available. Clients seeking mortgage assistance will be required to visit a Ohio HUD approved housing counselor.

Avon/Avon Lake Community Resources Center - The non-profit agency provides emergency financial assistance and grants to help people with paying gas and electric bills. Funding is for people whose utilities have been or are at risk of being shut off or disconnected. Dial (440) 933-5639

Non-profits and charities, including churches, may offer no interest loans. The money may be issued on a non-sectarian basis. Some funds are focused on a certain client though. Expenses including transportation, job training, employment, and housing (including rent or security deposits) may be paid for. Some can address medical bills or needs too. Learn more on interest free loans in Cleveland County area.

Love Inc. of Lorain County works with local churches and provides very limited utility and heating bill payment assistance through local churches and charities. Some of the other programs offered include diapers and baby supplies, home and car repairs, school clothing, and prescription medications and drugs. Elyria Ohio (440) 322-5683.

Neighborhood Alliance offers help as part of Family Services. There is assistance for qualified low income families available across all of Lorain County, with some programs focused on seniors or children. While funds are limited, in some cases a low interest loan is provided.

Tenants facing eviction, or the homeless, can explore the shelters in the region. Or, more proactive emergency funds may be offered to pay back rent or past due utility bills. The homeless can also apply for help with a security deposit on their new apartment.

Seniors can receive a free meal, or applications for benefits such as SSI or Medicare. The Alliance also has information on child care vouchers for working parents. Read Neighborhood Alliance programs.

Salvation Army - There are several offices around Loraine County listed below. Programs include help for paying gas bill and electric bill payment assistance, vouchers for food and groceries, clothing, or free school and work clothes. Also may have money for gasoline for medical appointments or job interviews. The Lorain County Salvation Army also provides free holiday help, such as Adopt a Family Christmas toys, Thanksgiving turkey dinners and other goods.

  • Amherst Service Unit, 553 South Main Street, Old Stone United Methodist Church, Amherst, Ohio 44001, (440) 984-2550
  • 11149 West River Road, New Life Wesleyan Church, Columbia Station, OH 44028, phone (440) 236-8600
  • 105 West Main Street, Lagrange United Methodist Church, Lagrange, Ohio 44050
  • 973 Mechanic Street, United Methodist Church Of Grafton, Grafton, Ohio 44044, call (440) 926-3883
  • Several other centers and services are offered as well. More on Lorain County Salvation Army resources.





Karen P. Nakon Breast Cancer Foundation - Provides cash grants and financial assistance to help underinsured or unemployed women and their families. The beneficiaries of any financial aid need to be diagnosed with breast cancer. The resources are not available to any other individuals. Funds can pay utilities and heating bills, rent and mortgage assistance, child care, Medical treatment, prescriptions and/or supplies not covered by other means, child care, and more. 35765 Chester Road, Avon, OH 44011, call (440) 933-7621

Lorain County Office of Aging covers senior citizens in the zip codes of 44028 and 44044 only. The address is 320 North Gateway Boulevard, Elyria, Ohio 44035. From time to time there may be funds available for paying expenses such as rent, water bills, heating costs, or other critical needs, such as medications.

The center also provides additional support to the elderly in Lorain County. They can provide information on enrolling into Medicare or provide congregate meals to the working poor. Or learn about medication and affordable housing programs. It is one time only aid, and the money is very limited. Dial (440) 452-0351, or find additional resources that may offer emergency help paying rent.

Lorain County SVDP, or Society of Saint Vincent, helps the poor. Everything from food to clothes, money for bills or housing, clothing, ministry services, and a thrift store are offered. There are many parishes, or conferences that participate. Whether unemployed, a disadvantaged minority, working poor, or struggling, emergency financial aid combined with household necessities are offered, even including free back to school supplies. Continue with Society of Saint Vincent de Paul of Northeast Ohio.

NORD Center - Clifton Avenue can help families facing eviction, foreclosure or homelessness. Limited cash assistance may be provided to pay rent or mortgage and also supportive services are offered to address the root cause. Non-profits in Lorain County support the program too, including Catholic Charities, Oberlin Community Services and El Centro de Services Sociales. 3150 Clifton Avenue, Lorain, OH 44055, (440) 204-4376.

Lorain County Department Of Job And Family Services offers help with utility and heating bills for income qualified First Energy customers. Credits can be issued for their account.

There are other government programs run by the Department. They range from cash grants from Ohio Works First to applications to SNAP food stamp, child care vouchers or Medicaid. This is the main office to learn about public benefits and even services such as job training. 42485 North Ridge Road, Elyria, Ohio 44035, dial (440) 244-4150. More on Lorain County government and public assistance.







Lorain County Veterans Service Commission - Apply for clothing, free food, utility help, mortgage and rent assistance. 42495 North Ridge Road, Elyria, OH 44035, call (440) 284-4625

Rent help from non-profits - If you have an eviction notice or need to get into low income housing or a homeless shelter, several agencies and charities specialize in offering emergency rental assistance. Apply for funds and cash grants in Lorain County. Read more on rental assistance in Lorain County.

Free food and groceries

If you are struggling with providing food to your family, Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio is committed to helping individuals and families who are at-risk for hunger in Lorain County Ohio. They are helping people during these difficult time by providing them with food and groceries.

Other local churches, food banks and pantries, and charities to turn to for free food include. Amherst Church of the Nazarene (440) 988-9014), Heritage Presbyterian Church ((440) 988-9409), Mount Olivet Alliance Church ((440) 322-1773), St. John Lutheran Church ((440) 324-4070). Also click here for additional free food banks and pantries in Lorain County.

Homeless Prevention

Faith House and other non-profits can provide people who are facing an eviction with emergency assistance. The organization provides assistance with rent and utilities, food, household supplies, and clothing to those who need help. HUD grants can also help pay water bills or unique housing expenses incurred by the disabled or single parents in Lorain County Ohio. The organizations, based on funding, can often help a couple hundred people per month. Read more on homeless prevention services in Lorain County.

In addition, the center at Faith House provides Christmas presents and food as well as Easter baskets to the needy in the local area. Call them at 330.384.1555.

Health and free medical care clinics Lorain Conny

Lorain County Free Clinic offers medical services that include complete medical and health care, all necessary surgery, vision care, limited dental care, diagnostic services, prescription medications and dietary counseling. Call (440) 277-7602

Lorain County Health and Dentistry - Services are offered on a sliding fee scale. The community clinic provides basic health, dental, and medical care including adult medicine, women's health, asthma/allergy, pediatrics, podiatry, treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, dental services, assistance completing applications, referrals to government programs and specialists and transportation to and from appointments. Call (440) 240-1655 for more information or to make an appointment.

Free legal aid in Lorain County, including foreclosure prevention

The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland also helps people who live in Lorain County. The non-profit law firm is the fifth oldest legal aid society in the entire world. The goal of the organization is to provide top notch, high quality legal services and advice for low income clients, at no cost to these individuals. Click here to learn more about free lawyers and legal programs, or call them at 440-323-8240. Israel





The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland offers free legal aid for many civil legal issues, such as domestic issues, divorce, consumer debt, and much more. However, the one in most demand is the law firm offers legal assistance for housing-related problems including foreclosures, evictions, substandard housing conditions and mortgage delinquency. Click here for more legal aid programs in Ohio or dial (440) 323-8240.

The Urban League of Lorain County is the local HUD approved foreclosure counseling agency. Learn more on HUD foreclosure prevention programs, or dial (440) 323-5299 to speak to the Urban League.


By Jon McNamara

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