Short term financial assistance from Metropolitan Ministries in Hamilton County TN.
The faith based Metropolitan Ministries is focused on helping the less fortunate, working poor, and people that are struggling in Hamilton County. They offer advice, guidance, and occasional financial aid, with a focus on housing and medical needs. There may also be emergency rent help or money for overdue utility bills. Staff and volunteers from the charity also can direct individuals to medications and things such as health care in the Chattanooga Tennessee region. Note appointments are not taken and support is first come and served.
All clients are also supported in their efforts to gain self-sufficiency and stability. Staff from the ministry can advocate on their behalf, help people negotiate with creditors or companies such as utility providers, landlords and more. There are also Supportive Services Coordinators on site who can help people that qualify for this service. The main goal is to help someone achieve long term stability.
While each client’s situation and needs will be reviewed on a case by case basis, and all resources are very limited, some examples of the programs available may include the following. When requesting help, all clients are interviewed on a first-come, first-served basis.
Also note that when possible, ministry staff and volunteers from the charity will recommend emergency financial assistance on a case-by-case basis. This may expedite an application if it is an option.
Emergency financial aid
For people with a short term crisis but that are otherwise self-sufficient, there may be one time financial aid for paying past due rent or bills. This can include utilities (such as water, electric, or gas). The rent payment may be for preventing an eviction, and in limited cases some funds may be offered for a mortgage payment.
Some clients may need help with medications in a life threatening condition. That is where the Metropolitan Ministries may be able to assist. There can be vouchers or other aid offered in partnership with Hamilton County pharmacies or medical providers.
Other aid or referrals may be provided in some cases. It includes the following.
- Groceries or vouchers may also be issued for families to use at the Chattanooga Area Food Bank. There may be free fruits, vegetables, formula, and similar goods distributed. Find details on free food pantries in Chattanooga.
- Self-sufficiency can be addressed through job assistance and training. Staff can help people explore vocational and academic enrollment and maybe apply for financial aid from a school.
- Government benefits, such as funds for paying heating bills from the LIHEAP energy assistance program. This is widely available in Chattanooga. Many clients also need guidance on applying for disability or resources such as SNAP.
- Other medical care arranged by the Metropolitan Ministries and local clinics includes primary care, dental services, exams for women, and even free eyeglasses. Or get information on the social security extra help program or applying for Medicaid.
- Other assistance may be legal consultations, low cost home phones, clothing/housewares, home repair, refurbished hearing aids, and general counseling.
Additional services from Metropolitan Ministries
As noted, funding is very limited. The Ministry and its partners, which may include churches or other local charities, help income qualified client with one need at a time. If and when needed, every effort is made by the charity to refer clients to other non-profit agencies in Chattanooga or nearby towns that may be able to help with other emergency needs or expenses. They even offer support around starting an emergency savings account for future bills.
The application process is also extensive, and proof of hardship and more is needed. All clients of the ministry will need to go through intake with a volunteer and probably the Supportive Services Coordinator. Together you will try to find a long term solution to the issue.
When applying for help, some or all of the following may be needed. Be prepared with the names, social security numbers, and incomes of all household members. Clients should also have a valid photo ID as well as proof of need. Also, copies of income and expenses are required, such as past due notice from the client's landlord, eviction letter, an overdue utility bill, and copies of a budget.
Rent help is from the 1st of the 15 of each month only and utility bill help is 16th to the 30th. First come and served help is only offered Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays to the first 35 people until funds run out. Seniors are assisted on Wednesdays. The main address is at 112 McCallie Avenue, Chattanooga, Tennessee 37404, call 423.624.9654.