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Community action agency assistance programs in New Hampshire.

Community action agencies in New Hampshire can help individuals find a job, improve their finances or gain new skills. At the same time, the low income, unemployed and others who are struggling can apply for government grants and other financial aid to pay their bills, rent, or receive food. Case managers from the community action agencies in New Hampshire near you (listed below) will help those who are less fortunate get assistance with meeting their basic needs.

If you are going through a difficult period, maybe have lost a job or need help paying heating bills or other expenses, then the non-profit agencies may be able to help. While the demand for services is high and resources are listed, some examples of the programs available across the state are below.

Community action employment programs

Job Training and Workplace Success can offer skills training and volunteer placement as part of the New Hampshire Employment Program. Typical clients will be people who are trying to re-enter the workforce while supporting their families. Many are also receiving government grants from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).

The program and your community action agency can arrange for computer and classroom training as part of Service Bureau activities. Staff provide clients and the unemployed with volunteer job placements and experiences throughout the state. Your agency will also work with businesses and local employers.

The state and federal government Workforce Investment Act helps economically disadvantaged and displaced workers get jobs. The centers can also offer training for in-demand occupations through a number of New Hampshire Works offices and community agencies around the state. Examples of activities to assist the unemployed are help with interviewing, resume writing and assessment of previous abilities.

Employment counselors from WIA will work with individuals who are 18 and older and who meet program guidelines. A component may also work with seniors over 55 and/or 16 to 18 year olds. Specialists can offer individualized employment plans; support services such as day care or transportation; vocational and career assessments, skills and educational services; and on-the-job training with employers.




Workforce Development services are offered by community action agencies in partnership with other state and local agencies. These will utilize federal and state government funding. Assistance is provided at community action offices and at the NH One-Stop Job and Information Centers. Some of what may be provided includes workplace skill identification, career guidance and planning, labor market information, resume writing, job search and placement, and interview skills. Funds to pay for classroom training may also be available at a non-profit. Continue with and learn more on free job training in New Hampshire.

Financial assistance and grants in New Hampshire

Temporary Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) is a federal government funded program administered by various community action agencies. Food and groceries offered can help supplement the diets of low-income residents, including children, the elderly and the homeless. Clients can get free food and nutrition assistance. The non-profit agencies also work with pantries, churches, homeless shelters, soup kitchens and nursing homes across New Hampshire. Commodities are provided free of charge to qualified lower income families and individuals in need of food assistance.

Community Action Agencies in New Hampshire can help indigent and low income families find free burial or cremation programs. Some churches offer aid and there are also local state government resources that help pay for memorial services, including a casket, burial, or other service. Read more on state financial help with funeral costs.

USDA Summer Food Service Program is offered by non-profits, food banks, and some community action agencies. The government aid will help ensure children receive free nutritious meals or snacks during the summer months. Assistance is offered to children under the age of 18 at approved feeding sites.

Homeless Prevention is provided from government grants, and often in partnership with the United Way. The program will help clients with paying first month's rent, mortgage payments, back rent, utility bill assistance and possibly even some vehicle repairs (if needed for work). The amount of financial assistance provided by the state or any agency depends upon the client's immediate need and the availability of funding. Emergency rental and homeless prevention programs are designed to be used if a client is unable to receive assistance through other sources, so it is a last resort.





As part of Homeless Prevention, there are various local as well as national rental assistance programs that community action can refer people too. Charities, government agencies, non-profits and other organization may offer financial aid for back rent, mediation services for landlords-tenants, and other resources. Find other ways to get help paying rent.

The New Hampshire and federally funded Low Income Home Energy Program, which is also called LIHEAP or Fuel Assistance, can help qualified low income and seniors pay their winter heating and energy bills. Most of the aid is offered during the winter, fall, or early spring. As indicated those households where elderly, disabled persons and/or children under the age of 6 reside receive priority from your community action agency and the state of New Hampshire. The amount of the grant provided is based on the applicant’s income, number of family members, and the dollar amount of their energy bills.

Discounts on utility bills are offered from the New Hampshire Electric Assistance Program. It gives eligible low income and struggling customers a discount on their monthly electricity bills. The exact amount of savings can range from about 7% up to 70%. Customers of the following companies may apply for the discount, including New Hampshire Electric Cooperative, National Grid, Unitil Energy Systems, and Public Service of New Hampshire. Apply for EAP at your nearest Outreach Office or community action agency. Find other programs that offer emergency help with utility bills.

The Housing Rehabilitation Program can help individuals who sometimes cannot afford to make needed repairs to their homes. Most of the beneficiaries are elderly or disabled people who get by on Social Security benefits and who may live in older homes, and it could even be the house they have owned most of their lives. Home repairs may also be offered for couples with young children or single parents who struggle to make ends meet on a daily basis or assistance is for families who have fallen on hard times due to a job loss or illness. Some of the common repairs made can include a leaky roof, a malfunctioning heating system, or a failed septic system as any of these can destabilize households.

There are several home rehab programs in New Hampshire, which help low to moderate income families and senior citizens make needed repairs to their homes. Some repairs may be made using low interest loans, or other government grants can be made. Either way, these New Hampshire programs are designed to help people stay in their homes and keep them in good repair.

The New Hampshire Bureau of Homeless and Housing Services pays for the Housing Security Deposit Program, and applications are processed at your local community action agency. The assistance provided is in the form of a loan to the client and a guarantee certificate to the landlord. The loan needs to be paid back to the state and community action agency.

SFSP, or the Summer Food Service Program, provides free meals to youth and students during the summer months. Dozens of feeding centers and meal service locations are spread across New Hampshire. Free snacks and meals are available at open locations such as libraries, churches, malls, and other public locations. All meals are served and prepared following USDA guidelines, so they meet nutritional guidelines. Receive breakfast, lunch and supper meals and more at designated locations.

Heating Repair and Replacement can help income eligible clients who are faced with a crisis during the winter. The program can provide for the repair or replacement of their furnace, boiler, or heating system. Those systems that are deemed to be defective or unsafe to operate may qualify, if there is funding available.





Weatherization is paid for by the federal government. It can help people save money and address health and safety issues. The goal is to improve energy conservation measures and increase the energy efficiency of the home. Priority will be given to the elderly, the disabled, and families with children under six years of age. Community action agencies accept applications. These programs work in conjunction with various other conservation programs that are funded by companies such as Public Service of New Hampshire and National Grid-NH.

The HUD and state of New Hampshire Homeless Outreach and Intervention Project was designed to provide aggressive intervention and outreach services to people facing eviction as well as the unsheltered homeless. Non-profit community agencies provide education and advocacy when assisting applicants.

Commodity Supplemental Food Program distributes free nutritious foods and groceries to supplement the diets of children and senior citizens. CSFP helps to improve the health of children (up to age six), income-eligible new mothers (up to one year postpartum), and seniors (aged 60 years and older) by providing them with supplemental USDA commodity food package as well as nutrition education.

The program can offer a variety of foods such as canned fruits and vegetables, cereal, nonfat dry and evaporated milk, juice, rice, pasta, egg mix, peanut butter, poultry or tune, canned meat and cheese. Nutrition education is provided by case workers to participants and includes information on dietary intake, food preparation, recipes for preparing the commodity foods, and food safety in New Hampshire.

New Hampshire food pantries may also be located at some community action agencies near you. Or the locations give out free, emergency boxes of groceries. Or they help struggling, low income families apply for SNAP food stamps or other benefits. Find groceries, hygiene supplies, commodities and more. Locate free food pantries in New Hampshire.

Homeless Prevention funds and grants are sometimes available through your local community agency. The federal government funds are used to provide one-time emergency rental assistance to individuals/families, and the money will attempt to prevent homelessness caused by eviction, no heat, utility disconnect, or other situations.

The New Hampshire New Start Program provides prevention/intervention, housing and related support services for persons who are homeless, behind on rent or at risk of eviction. Service plans are offered to provide for a two-year continuum of care for individuals and families.

Neighbor Helping Neighbor is a utility bill assistance program funded by donations. It is for those more moderate income households that are not eligible for the state’s Fuel Assistance Program but have experienced a hardship and are faced with shut off. Grants can be paid out, and all money needs to go to paying energy or heating costs.

Transportation can be coordinated by buses or vans. The service offers door-to-door, demand response transportation to anyone age 60 and over and/or to the homebound. There may be a small fee required. The majority of the rides provided to seniors are to grocery stores, doctor appointments, area malls, shopping plazas, and senior centers.

Case management services fro community action in NH

Family Wellness is a resource that offers support, information, resources, and guidance to families going through a difficult period. Case managers and home visitors are experienced and trained social workers who work with families to develop attainable goals. They can cover issues such as medical and health education, child development, family mentoring and general advocacy. Developing education and employment are a focus as well.







Head Start is the state’s and nation’s primary school readiness program. It offers children from low income families with comprehensive health, education, nutrition, and parent involvement services. This program operates throughout New Hampshire. The objective of the Head Start program is to promote school readiness in children by enhancing their cognitive and social development through the provision of educational, health, nutritional and other services. Parents can also benefits, as assistance is also available for them as well, such as employment counseling.

Information and referrals is offered to seniors from the ServiceLink program. This resource provides information, referrals, and other support for adults who are at least 60 years of age. Assistance is also offered for adults living with disabilities, their caregivers and families. A number of non-profits and resources are offered to help people live as independently and fully as possible. ServiceLink offers senior citizens advocacy, education, connection to available services, follow up and support.

The Prenatal Program is offered to income qualified pregnant women and teens. It promotes healthy pregnancy outcomes by providing individuals access to comprehensive medical care. Assistance is provided by health care professionals including child birth educators, Certified Nurse Midwives, physicians, nutritionists, and social workers.

Locations of New Hampshire non-profit community action agencies

Community Action Partnership of Strafford County
Mailing address - P.O. Box 160
Dover, NH 03821-0160
Telephone number is (603) 516-8130
Among the resources from this community action agency include the HSDP - Housing Security Deposit Loan Program, Head Start, grants for paying fuel and heating bills, and referrals. More information on Community Action Partnership of Strafford County.

Community Action Program of Belknap-Merrimack Counties, Inc.
P.O. Box 1016
Concord, NH 03302-1016
Telephone: (603) 225-3295
Several low income assistance programs are offered for New Hampshire families. Apply for government aid such as LIHEAP or weatherization. More local programs are available too, including food or homeless prevention/rental assistance. Learn more on financial assistance from Community Action Program of Belknap-Merrimack Counties.

Southern New Hampshire Services, Inc. (SNHS)
Mailing address is P.O. Box 5040
Manchester, NH 03108-5040
(603) 668-8010
Offers resources for Hillsborough and Rockingham County.

Southwestern Community Services, Inc.
63 Community Way
Keene, NH 03431-0603
Primary phone number - (603) 352-7512
Counties - Cheshire, Sullivan. Read more on grants from Southwestern Community Services.

Tri-County Community Action Program, Inc.
Main address: 30 Exchange Street
Berlin, NH 03570-1911
Call (603) 752-7001 for information on services
Counties include Coos, Carroll, and Grafton


By Jon McNamara

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