Muscogee County assistance programs.

Resources to deal with a financial hardship

Residents of Columbus, Fort Benning, and/or Muscogee Georgia have some places to turn to for aid. They include the Enrichment Services Program, Inc. and also the Army Emergency Relief financial hardship assistance program. Find details on both options here.

Enrichment Services

This is the local Columbus and Muscogee County Georgia community action agency. They offer the services below.

Emergency Food and Shelter Program: This assistance program was designed to help low and moderate income families in obtaining food, utility bill assistance, shelter, and rental assistance for a period of time of 7 to 30 days.

USDA Surplus Commodity (TEFAP): The Emergency Food Assistance Program will grant lower income households with food aid and groceries in the form of USDA commodities. Applicants can use the program up four times per year.




Employment & Training: A free service that provides assistance with career development, job development, job placement and retention.

Energy Assistance and Weatherization: The federal government funded Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) will assist both low and moderate income families with offsetting the increased cost of energy bills, with a focus on winter home heating costs. However, people may be able to get help with summer cooling bills. On the other hand, weatherization provides minor housing renovation, updates, and repairs to help people with the increasing costs of energy for low income families. It will provide them with free energy updates to their homes. More on Georgia LIHEAP.

Contact the agency at (706) 649-1600. Or click more information.





Financial readiness program

The program provides extensive help to military members, veterans, and their immediate families. Last year the organization provided almost $3.3 million of assistance through Fort Benning last year.

The goal is to take the stress of financial hardship off the Soldier and their family so that she or he can concentrate on their mission and so they don’t have to worry about family matters.

While the services offered do vary, most of the program’s assistance is given in the form of no-interest loans, however cash grants are also available. The funds provided from the Financial Readiness Program can be used for any emergency that may come up including food, rent and utilities, vehicle repair and maintenance,  or even travel arrangements and expenses. Find other government loan programs. Read more.

All soldiers, their family members and even veterans can request assistance, which is approved by appointment on a case-by-case need basis, by picking up an application which is located in Building 2633 in Soldiers’ Plaza before 4:30 p.m. Although applications will be processed as soon as possible, the wait time will be shorter for those who use a command referral, which allows a Soldier’s company commander or first sergeant to be the approval authority for up to $1,000. That can really accelerate the application process. The groups tries for a 24-hour turnaround on those.

Emergency financial assistance in Muscogee Georgia

Mission Columbus Central offers the following assistance programs.

  • -Food pantry
  • -Medical and Health Care Clinic for Families with no or limited insurance, Low to no income, must not qualify for federal government Medicaid or Medicare or have private insurance.
  • -Dental assistance for not insured persons only, must provide your total income from a wage inquiry and qualifications.




  • -Emergency rent assistance (the last $25 or $30 of rent)
  • -Bus fare or gasoline money or vouchers
  • -Eye Exams for low income and uninsured. Click here for more on eye exams and glasses.
  • -Clothing bank assistance that gives new or gently used clothes once every three months
  • -Utility and cooling bill assistance (the last $25 or $30)
  • -Prescription drug assistance for heart, insulin, and blood pressure issues or diagnosis only.

Call the Columbus GA agency at (706) 507-4672.

Chattahoochee Valley Episcopal Ministry, Inc. - The non-profit agency runs several assistance programs and provides resources. They include offerings rent assistance and making help available the first week of the month only or until funds run out. Work attire and clothes. Transportation assistance is made available to help with providing gas money, car repairs and maintenance, screened bus tickets, student bus passes. Free or low cost food. And referrals to government programs and local charities is also offered. Columbus Georgia based. (706) 327-2836

Enrichment Services Program, Inc. runs the federal government Emergency Food and Shelter Program. This housing and assistance program was created to assist low income families in obtaining free food and groceries, shelter, and utilities and cooling assistance for a 7 to 30 day period of time. Phone (706) 649-1600.





Urban League of Greater Columbus, Inc. may have some limited financial assistance, but they definitely focus on helping people and families improve their financial situation. Call (706) 323-3687. For example, they offer employment education and training, free tax help, rental and utility assistance, counseling, and other support. Call (706) 323-3687.

Samaritan Fund (phone number (706) 327-4958) may offer prescription drug assistance, available once in 12 months, utility bill assistance, and gasoline for clients who have written proof of a  job interview or doctor's appointment.

St. Anne's Outreach - This is another non-profit that helps the low income and needy in Muscogee County Georgia. Among the programs include prescription medication, utility and cooling bill assistance, a free food pantry, blanks during the winter and fans during the summer, and they can assist with holiday gifts and meals, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas. Dial (706) 568-1592 to make an appointment.

Valley Rescue Mission offers utility assistance are available on Wednesday and Thursday, Thanksgiving and Christmas meals, Baby items, Free food from a food pantry, Clothing, and Medical equipment. This is just a sampling of the programs and resources that are offered to the low income and needy in the community. Call (706) 322-8267.

Columbus Georgia Salvation Army offers numerous services including those listed below.

  • Limited prescription medications and vouchers.
  • Free diapers and baby supplies. More on free diapers.
  • Limited financial assistance and grants for paying delinquent rent, mortgage and utilities.
  • An on site thrift store.
  • Boxes of food around the holidays, including Thanksgiving and Christmas.
  • A food pantry and soup kitchen.
  • Housing solutions, including referrals to security deposit programs in Columbus, emergency shelters, and other support.

Many other assistance programs are available either by referrals or directly from the corps center. More Columbus Georgia area Salvation Army.





During the Christmas and Thanksgiving holidays, assistance is available in Muscogee County. There are a diverse number of agencies, ranging from the Salvation Army (Angel Tree) to toys for tots and churches that help the low income. Find free food, meals, Christmas gifts and more. Continue with free holiday help in Muscogee County.

Credit counseling, debt reduction, and foreclosure prevention

The Family Center covers much of the surrounding area. Among the credit programs offered include Consumer Credit Counseling Service, Information on foreclosure prevention tactics and programs, credit repair and reports, bankruptcy counseling and advice, as well as Debt management program. Call (706) 327-3238, or click here for more debt assistance programs.

Mortgage and rent payment assistance in Muscogee

The non-profit Homeless Resource Network, Inc. (phone (706) 571-3399) focuses on providing housing support services. Limited financial assistance and grants may be available if the applicant was served an eviction notice or if they received intent to foreclose (mortgage) from their lender, if the applicant has an utility disconnection notice, or if they have had a loss of income within 6 months or request for assistance.

Another non-profit to try is Consumer Credit Counseling Service. Call (706) 327-3239. Among other services provides is the fact that they are a financial counseling service that assists individuals and families with money management, they offer debt reduction plans, offer help on budgeting, free or low cost foreclosure prevention, and general financial education. Find additional non-profit credit counseling agencies, or dial (706) 327-3239.

Low cost community health care clinics

Central Alabama Comprehensive Health, Inc. offers medical care on a sliding fee scale. They offer comprehensive health care for all medical problems, including services for pediatrics, internal medicine, family practice, and dental care for individuals and families. They also offer preventative services such as free blood pressure checks, immunizations, health screening, family planning and health fairs. Call (334) 727-7050.

Food pantry and assistance programs

Columbus Baptist Association offers a food pantry and clothing bank that people can use once every 2-3 months. Call (706) 322-7757

Other non-profits, churches, and charities to contact for free or low cost food and groceries include First Baptist Church Food Closet ((706) 322-4468), Grant Chapel AME Church ((706) 682-1770), as well as Paul's Pantry (phone (706) 682-2927).

Residents have other food assistance programs available to them as well. Resources range from charity run pantries to public aid. Some even offer free Christmas meals or summer snacks for children. Find even more food pantries in Muscogee County and Columbus.



By Jon McNamara

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