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Assistance programs McHenry County Illinois.

Find how low income families can get free financial help from churches, charities, or government benefits from DHS. Get assistance with rent, housing costs, mortgages or security deposits. Or apply for government grants or social services in Woodstock to pay electric, heating or utility bills. There are also free groceries from pantries, and even charitable medical or dental care in McHenry County.

Non-profits as well as government or social services also require long term stability - as any aid is short term in nature. The financial assistance programs in McHenry County require case management, as well as debt counseling, free government income tax filing or job finding services, and all of these programs help the less fortunate in the community. There are also charities that give free items in Crystal Lake, Woodstock, and the county.

Emergency financial assistance for bills and expenses in McHenry County

The Salvation Army, Community Center. This is the local office of the leading charity organization. Emergency assistance is offered for rent and utility bills. Various social services are offered, such as Youth character building programs. For those looking for self-sufficiency or employment, look into the Salvation Army’s case management and referral programs.

Of course the charity also offer emergency financial help (for rent, mortgages or bills) as well as seasonal items such as free Christmas toys or school supplies. If you are one of the many people who need helps making rent, buying prescriptions, or paying for utility bills, the Crystal Lake and Mchenry County Salvation Army is one resource that can assist. the faith based charity helps low income families, the disabled, elderly, veterans and others. The charity is a place to turn to for free stuff as well as emergency financial assistance.

The local social service agency offers an Emergency Assistance program, which will provide free vouchers to families and individuals who need short-term financial help. Or get emergency funds to pay for unexpected expenses. Most often, the vouchers the Salvation Army will provide pays for food, clothing and prescriptions medications, and the money will also help people avoid an eviction. Find additional ways to get help with medical and hospital bills, including tips for how to negotiate hospital bills.

The address is 290 W. Crystal Lake Avenue, Crystal Lake, IL 6001. Phone number is 815-455-2769. Additional centers are at 829 Greenlee St, Marengo and in nearby towns. Click here for more information on the Salvation Army services, and find McHenry County Salvation Army assistance programs.




Catholic Charities in the Diocese of Rockford offers Outreach & Emergency Services, Crisis Pregnancy Program, and other aid. This agency also supports all of McHenry County. They focus on serving the working poor, seniors, and families with children. Other assistance available can include food or emergency financial assistance for bills and basic needs. Some holiday assistance may be offered by the charity and local churches too. Case managers also help immigrants and people who are new to Illinois and the United States. Call 815-344-6956, or or read more on McHenry, Kane and Winnebago Catholic Charities.

McHenry Department Of Human Services runs many of the state and federal government assistance programs. Call the office to learn more about Temporary assistance to needy families with dependent children, also known as TANF. Other services include LIHEAP for heating and cooling bills. Medical assistance bill assistance s offered by Illinois All Kids as well as the information they have on community clinics. Continue with McHenry County public assistance.

DHS offers much more as well. Families, especially single moms, often benefit from child care vouchers as well as Food stamps. There is also a regional refugee/repatriate programs which are administered. Main number is 815-338-0234, or read more Illinois public assistance.

Free Clothing Closet and Furniture Banks For McHenry County, Inc. - Among other services, this agency partners with the local Salvation Army and other non-profits. They have information and referral to government and public assistance programs. May have household items to distribute to the needy. This includes diapers, new clothing, furniture such as sofas, work uniforms, school supplies for students from low income families and more. 221 E. Calhoun St., Woodstock, Illinois 60098, phone 815-338-5316

Other locations also provide free or low cost clothes. Depending on the organization, this may also include school supplies (such as uniforms or notebooks) or presents at Christmas. More on McHenry County free furniture, school supplies and clothing closets.





Crisis Line - If you are facing eviction, or are currently homeless, McHenry County has an information and referral line available. It provides information on shelters, transitional housing, emergency rent programs, free legal aid and eviction prevention services. It was created to help those that are struggling. More on crisis line referrals in McHenry County.

Society of St. Vincent DePaul
This charity has several churches that work with it, as indicated below. Various social services and referrals are provided by volunteers. The society will do its best to meet the needs of poor McHenry residents. Emergency rent, utilities, medications, and more may be provided. In some cases, individuals will be offered zero percent loans for their housing needs.
111 South Hubbard Street, St. Margaret Mary Church, Algonquin, Illinois 60102, call (847) 628-5161
410 N. First Street, St. Peter and Paul Church, Cary, Illinois 60013
1023 McHenry Avenue, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Conference, Crystal Lake, IL 60014
297 East Jefferson, St. Charles Borromeo, Hampshire, IL 60140
101 Church Street, St. Joseph Catholic Church, Harvard, IL 60033
5601 Bull Valley Road   Church of the Holy Apostles  McHenry, IL 60050
10519 Main Street, St. Joseph's Catholic Church, Richmond, Illinois 60071
2118 Main Street, St. Peter Parish, Spring Grove, IL 60081
5006 E. Wonder Lake Road, Christ the King Catholic Church, Wonder Lake, Illinois 60097
312 Lincoln Avenue, St. Mary's Church, Woodstock, IL 60098
For additional information, find McHenry County Society of St. Vincent assistance.

There are other church programs in the community, as SVDP in McHenry County is but one resource. Anyone in need can turn to a church or “parish” in their neighborhood, as most have small food pantries, clothing closets or tithe type programs as a form of financial help.  Or they give free stuff. Find churches near you for financial help.

Evangelical Free Church of Crystal Lake administrates financial assistance utilities, heating bills, prescriptions, rent, car repairs, or any short-term financial need. Address is 575 E. Crystal Lake Avenue, Crystal Lake, Illinois 60014. Call (815) 459-1095 for intake.

Housing Authority is the region’s local community action agency. Most of the resources focus around housing needs, such as grants for paying rent, providing low income housing, shelters or emergency energy bill assistance. They also process applications for government programs such as section 8 housing vouchers.

Receive energy bill help, both money to pay bills and home improvements to save energy, from the community action agency. Call them at (815) 338-7752. The two different services and programs are the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) as well as the weatherization program.

Receive rent assistance, funds to prevent an eviction, money for security deposits, and even utility bill help from the McHenry County Housing Authority. They provide tenants with grants from the Homeless Prevention and Rapid-Rehousing Program (HPRP). The grants can pay a portion or rent, security deposits or even mortgages in an effort to stop homelessness in the community.





Receive rent assistance, funds to prevent an eviction, money for security deposits, and even utility bill help from the McHenry County Housing Authority. They provide tenants with grants from the Homeless Prevention and Rapid-Rehousing Program (HPRP). The grants can pay a portion or rent, security deposits or even mortgages in an effort to stop homelessness in the community. Phone number (815) 338-7752.

They also administer the Rental Housing Support Program, provide emergency or long term heating bill help from LIHEAP, as well as weatherization services. Last, but not least, is dental care for low income families. They also help rehab (repair) old homes, administer free energy conservation updates to homes and other social services.

The community action agency also offers the VITA program to help people with state or federal taxes. This ia seasonal services, and learn more on free income tax filing. Call the agency for referrals and other support services. The address is 1108 N Seminary Ave, Woodstock, IL 60098. Phone number (815) 338-7752. More on programs from McHenry County Housing Authority.

Senior Services Associates, Inc. - As resources allow, one-time financial assistance is available in McHenry County for emergency situations such as housing, prescription medications, food, and utilities. (815) 356-7457

Local towns offer general assistance, often in partnership with the Salvation Army Emergency Assistance program. Support is usually available for life-threatening circumstances, such as final notice bill or eviction.

  • Grafton Township, 10109 Vine Street, Huntley, Illinois 60142, call (847) 669-3328
  • McHenry Township, 3703 N. Richmond Road, Johnsburg, IL 60051, dial (815) 385-5605
  • Dorr Township, 1039 Lake Avenue, Woodstock, IL 60098, telephone (815) 338-0125

Marengo Area Outreach Enterprises mostly offers referrals and case management. However some funds may be available to those low income who qualify if they are facing eviction or utility shut-offs. (815) 568-7950

Other housing programs and agencies also offer rent assistance in the area. There are about ten different organizations to call for information on their programs and/or direct cash aid. One key goal is to offer emergency funds for back rent to prevent an impending eviction. Find rent assistance in McHenry County.

Bankruptcy, free debt, and foreclosure assistance

Consumer Credit Counseling Service of McHenry County offers free counseling, budgeting skills, education, money management services, debt management plans, and foreclosure advice. Debt and housing counselors will work one on one with the client to explore various options and programs for dealing with credit card and medical debts, as well as foreclosure assistance programs. 815-338-5757. Also read more on Illinois mortgage assistance programs.

Health and free medical care services

Low income and other working individuals can access health care from Family Health Partnership Clinic. The Health Care Clinic provides its medical for the whole family. Some examples of the programs include check ups, cancer screenings, chronic disease management, physicals, and sick care. Low income, people who can’t afford medical bills, and the uninsured all can get assistance. Phone 815-334-8987

McHenry County Housing Authority, which can be reached at (815) 338-7752, offers referrals only. Clients of this non-profit community action agency can get information on health care programs that provide Dental Services, Vision and a Hearing Aid Program.

Family Health Partnership Clinic of Woodstock (phone (815) 334-8987) provides primary care to the uninsured of McHenry County.







Community Action Agency - Pre-school Head Start Program for children is offered. The program is very comprehensive, and includes vision, hearing, vision and dental screening; it will ensure certain immunizations are up-to-date yearly; free dental care and treatment, and other medical referrals, as needed; advocacy, information and referral to social services for Head Start parents only. 100 N. Benton Street, #3, Woodstock, IL 60098, 815-338-8790

The state of Illinois also provides free or low cost medical, dental, and overall healthcare to the poor, indigent, and uninsured in McHenry County. The government takes a pro-active approach. Meaning check-ups, dental cleanings, physical, medications and other care. Learn more about medical care when lacking insurance in Illinois.

McHenry County Illinois free food pantries

The following organizations may provide free meals, groceries, and perishable food items. Locations will also often have special holiday meals, such as assistance at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Call for more details, including hours.

  • Crystal Lake 257 King Street, phone 815-455-0961
  • Cary-Grove 8901 S. Cary Algonquin Rd., dial 847-516-3602
  • Algonquin/Lake in the Hills Interfaith, telephone 847-854-1904
  • Harvard 12 N. Ayer St., call 815-943-5121 for hours
  • Huntley – Grafton Township 10109 Vine St., 847-669-3328
  • McHenry 3708 N. Richmond Rd, phone 815-344-4717
  • Marengo, 837 W. Grant, 815-568-7950
  • Richmond, 10308 Main Street, (Memorial Hall, lower level), dial 815-678-4351
  • Wonder Lake – Nativity Lutheran Church, phone 815-653-3832

A number of other free food banks and soup kitchens operate in the region. They serve hundreds of families per week with meals, free or low cost bags of groceries, and surplus government commodities. Locate more McHenry County Illinois free food pantries.

Get free diapers

Diapers are very expensive for low income families, and there are few places to get them for free. The St. Paul Diaper Bank Partnership of McHenry County has a program that changes that. This organization is now distributing free diapers to food pantries, charities, and other various agencies across the county.

It is one of only a few assistance programs statewide that provide such a service. The program is supported by many local agencies, as more than 30 churches and other groups have pledged to donate diapers to be distributed. Phone 815-338-7360.

Diapers are not covered by federal and state assistance programs, such as SNAP food stamps or WIC vouchers. TANF cash aid can be used to pay for diapers in McHenry County. In addition, food stamps can't be used to pay for diapers, and the Women, Infants and Children programs often do not provide them to low income families. In addition, free food banks and other charities don't always offer diapers as they are more expensive to stock and give away, and when they have them in stock, they tend to go fast as the demand is great.





Currently, the options for those who can't afford to pay for diapers are limited. What makes it challenging as well is experts that say for a variety of reasons cloth diapers aren't workable for most low-income families. Some reasons why include the fact that many Laundromats won't allow people to wash their soiled cloth diapers, and also day-care centers usually require the disposable variety for kids they watch.

Some other places to get free diapers include Loaves & Fishes Community Pantry in Naperville. That organization is one of the lucky few that can offer diapers to clients and others who need them. Or learn about national free diaper programs.


By Jon McNamara














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