Niagara Community Action Agency assistance programs.

With a focus on addressing poverty, the Niagara Community Action Program offers information on short term financial assistance. Case managers will also work with clients on longer term self-sufficiency, including employment and education.

So the agency helps the less fortunate in multiple ways. The short term solutions available may be free food, heating bill assistance, or clothing for work. However, Niagara County residents will also receive the all too important career counseling and educational services from the agency.

Food assistance from community action

Niagara Community Action Program assists low income or hungry families and individuals. Case managers work with them to obtain food stamp benefits through the Nutrition Outreach and Education Program. The coordinators from the agency help eligible households get the maximum allotment of SNAP food stamps that they can possibly get. They also help out with pre-screening that is free and confidential.

Using the food stamp vouchers, eligible applicants can purchase nutritious and healthy groceries and perishable goods. They can do this at most grocery stores in Niagara County using the free food stamps. People can secure meals for their children in this fashion.

With the use of these vouchers, seniors can also afford to buy both groceries and medications. Unemployed people can also experience the benefits of this government benefit program and not worry about securing food for their families. It helps people not having to decide between maybe making a payment for their heating bills or buying their groceries. Please call 439-1322 for more information.





In partnership with the municipality of the county and the Food Bank of Western New York, Niagara Community Action Program provides services to help deal with hunger. They partner with the Niagara County Food Distribution Center. Fresh, frozen and non-perishable food is distributed to the 30+ providers including shelters, food pantries, soup kitchens, and snack programs twice a month.

The Temporary Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) and HPNAP (Hunger Prevention Nutrition Assistance Program) fund the program as well. It also relies heavily on donations collected in Niagara County. The food is distributed to qualified low-income families in their communities. It is run from an office at 2201 Pine Avenue, Niagara Falls.





Financial help from Niagara Community Action Program

The Weatherization Assistance Program has been providing its services to the eligible residents of Niagara County since the 1970s. Clients are entitled to improvements in heating efficiency. It works by producing fuel savings through energy conservation measures. This program is funded by New York State Homes and Community Renewal. Several categories of free energy saving measures and home updates include:

  • Air leakage and infiltration measures - Eligible households are entitled to the measures that are designed to keep the warm air in during the winter and cold air out during the sometimes hot New York summer months.
  • Heating system/furnace efficiency measures - Improvement of the system which delivers heat to the dwelling unit is included in these measures. Additionally, a cleaning and tuning of the furnace or boiler is offered if needed. If needed, receive repairs, modifications and replacements to a furnace. All of these are also a part of the heating efficiency measures.
  • Air flow and house conduction measures - Reduction of the conduction of heat from the interior to the exterior of the home is the goal of introducing these Niagara Community Action measures.
  • Repairs - Any minor home repairs that may be needed to protect or preserve the weatherization materials installed are included in the services of the Weatherization Assistance Program.
  • Health and Safety - These measures are designed to reduce health and safety hazards with a focus on the disabled and seniors. Or the improvements can  notify residents of their presence.

For more information visit the community action office. Address is 1521 Main Street, Niagara Falls, New York 14305. You can also call: (716) 285-9681.

As part of the Neighborhood Centers (see below), the Niagara County community action agency can direct clients to emergency financial help. This may be for everything from grants to help with rent to energy bill assistance, heating oil, and utility payment plans. As there are many options, even including emergency LIHEAP for paying heating bills.




The community action agency of Niagara Community Action provides child care services to eligible families. Services for parents include help in locating day care that meets individual family needs and information on local centers, family child care homes, nursery schools and summer camps, or before and after school programs. Parents can also use the information on financial assistance as well as government vouchers. Get help in on choosing the right type of child care in western New York Or learn about free daycare services in New York State.

Employment, budgeting, and long term support in Niagara County

The main goal of the Neighborhood Centers Program is reducing poverty and empowering low-income individuals to reach their fullest potential. This umbrella program provides a range of services including Information and Referral, Application Assistance for government aid; Budget and Credit Counseling; Free  Food Pantries, Fair Housing Advocacy solutions, Gently Used Clothing Pantries, including a Professional Clothes Closet, Apartment Location Services, Landlord/Tenant Advocacy, and more.

Niagara Community Action addresses employment and career skills too. More people have flexibility in working from home. Or they gain new skills for the ever changing economy. Employment and money management are critical to long term financial stability. All clients can even get a list of the best work from home job opportunities.

Ensure you are being treated fairly from the Fair Housing Advocacy Program. This provides assistance to persons who feel they have been discriminated because of color, religion, race, national origin, sex, marital status, disability, age or because you have children.

In New York and the county, it is illegal to refuse to rent or sell housing or make a loan based on above mentioned statuses of discrimination. This program if a form of legal advice. It will determine if the law was broken, attempt to resolve your complaint and / or prepare your complaint for referral to the appropriate federal, state or local housing discrimination agency.





Locations of community action in Niagara County

A few sites are in the region. Financial aid, job programs, counseling, and more is available. Social workers are available from the Niagara Community Action Program. The main centers are as follows.

  • Niagara Falls, Address: 564 – 19th Street. Call this office at (716) 282-4375.
  • Lockport center is at 160 Washburn Street. Phone: (716) 433-6632
  • North Tonawanda, Address: 316 Thompson Street. Call (716) 694-9727


By Jon McNamara

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