Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter assistance programs.

Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter provides help to the disadvantaged, and the agency will also try to work with clients to get them back on track to long term stability. To this end, a number of programs are offered, including emergency solutions grant for housing needs and placement into job training centers. Staff from the Kitchen and Shelter work with other non-profit agencies on many of these programs as well.

More information on each of the resources is below. In almost all instances, an application is needed from the individual as well as proof of hardship. When it comes to financial assistance, proof of income and other information is needed, and the applicant will also need to pay a portion of the bill or back rent on their own as well. The job programs tend to be more wide ranging for people from Hillsborough County so that they can gain new skills and advance their careers.

Information on financial assistance, including Emergency Solutions Grants or LIHEAP, can be available on site as well. Many of these programs are run in partnership with other agencies in Manchester New Hampshire, such as the United Way. These programs offer emergency rent and housing assistance through Rapid Re-Housing and Homeless Prevention, and any money available is issued as a loan. There is also help for tenants facing eviction.

Rapid Re-Housing helps a homeless resident move as quickly as possible into a new low income apartment or permanent housing and achieve stability. There can be a combination of grants for paying rental expenses, an overdue utility bill, or even a security deposit as part of rehousing.

Homeless will be defined as people who lack a stable nighttime residence to sleep in. So maybe the person is living in their car, abandoned building, or a park in Nashua. Also, if a family is in a shelter, then there may be funds for them for the first months rent on a new, low income apartment. So Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter will try to help residents move out of a temporary shelter so they find permanent housing. In addition, find other emergency rent assistance in Hillsborough County.

Another key utility bill service is weatherization. This service will install free energy efficiency measures in the residences of homeowners, and this is done free of charge. It can be insulation, caulking, and like updates. All work done is effective, and these energy savings help families save on all sorts of utility bill. This conservation will often be required if someone is applying for funds from LIHEAP.





Hunger prevention is for residents of Nashua in a crisis. Food banks can provide a bag of groceries and other household items, such as paper products or cleaning supplies. If the individual is homeless and doesn't even have a place to store items from the food pantry, then they may receive assistance from local soup kitchens in Hillsborough County.

There are other partners that can also feed the hungry and less fortunate. As one example, free Salvation Army soup kitchens often serve dinner, lunch, and even offer holiday assistance. Nashua families can also turn to them for help.

Free personal hygiene items and supplies are available from NSKS. This is normally issued at the same time as a box of food, and can include toothpaste, toilet paper, shampoo, soap, free diapers, deodorant, and razors. The items are usually offered at most one time per month.

Financial literacy, budgeting, and employment resources

Education is for low income individuals who are in pursuit of new skills or a new job. Many of the clients of the program have been unsuccessful in gaining their GED or finding a job with a life sustaining wage. For these individuals, Alternative Education instructors provide workshops or one-on-one instruction.

The program is available at a low cost, with minimal testing fees due from the clients. If Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter decides it is needed, then tutoring is available for some of the coursework. As an example, there may be college prep readiness for the SAT. For those that need identification, there is help for drivers license written examination. Other services from Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter include job preparation training and placement with local employers.

Specific topics of classes include Resume building, Employment Preparation, Career Goals Planning, classes on introductory basic computer skills (Excel, Microsoft Word, PC computer), and mock interview. Other sessions can be coordinated as well, based on the needs of the client.

Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter can refer clients to local non-profit credit counselors or other self-sufficiency services. Some of the leading ones include Volunteer Income Tax Assistance for completing state and federal tax returns. There is also Financial Empowerment, applications to the Earned Income Tax Credit, and other. Most of these are for low to moderate income working families and individuals. These sessions are held by specialists, many of which are certified by the IRS or other agencies.

Another development service is the Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter Hispanic Advocacy. With an increasing number of immigrants in southern New Hampshire, the goal is to ensure they have access to programs are well. There is even translation and case management services.





Family Development is available from staff from Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter, and it is a strength-based approach to helping families gain stability. The clients works with staff on a monthly basis to address reaching their personal goals. This will also include the creation of a plan, and milestones to meet it. The program will help people access affordable housing, financial stability, employment, health care, education and training and effective parenting. Each plan will be set up to meet the client's specific needs.

More information on services from the charity, which are limited, can be obtained at (603) 889-7770.

By Jon McNamara

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