Okaloosa County assistance programs.

Florida has been hit hard by the economic downturn. Find information on charities, non-profit organizations, community action agencies, and other places to turn to for help with rent, bills, and other expenses

Emergency financial assistance

There are a total of five non-profit agencies and charities that people can turn to for aid.

Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida offers emergency financial and material assistance. Some of the programs they offer to low income, the elderly, disabled, and unemployed include financial assistance for a crisis. The money they distribute is not intended to be an ongoing charity type program, but rather one time help for a short term crisis. In addition, they also distribute food, adoption services, offer counseling services to all in need, provide information and referrals for other Florida and federal government programs, and help people regardless of their race, religion or natural origin. In addition, they have holiday gift programs. People can turn to them for holiday meals and gifts. Call them at (850)244-2825.

Harvest House assists people in Okaloosa County. The organization was established as an ecumenical outreach to assist individuals and families who may be experiencing a crisis or some type of difficulty in meeting their needs. qualified families can receive food or clothing. 850) 837-2277.




Sharing and Caring of Okaloosa County, Inc. (phone number 850)244-0778). This non-profit charity agency provides various forms of help to those in need. Receive food and assistance for paying rent, vouchers for prescription medicines, transportation services, gasoline vouchers, clothing and layettes. Services are provided to people who need help based on their need and funds availability of the agency.

The Salvation Army of Okaloosa County has limited funding that they can provide. The charity agency can assist viable (qualified) clients by providing them with rent help, shelter, free food, clothing, money for utility bills, access to state and federal government rent assistance programs, and money for prescription drugs. They do a great job of providing resources, as well as help and hope to those in need. Call them at (850)243-4531, or find information on Okaloosa County Salvation Army assistance.





The local community action agency, Tri-County Community Council, Inc. (dial (850) 547-3689) also offers several assistance programs, and can provide information on other options. The services they offer include:

  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) - The primary goal is to help qualified individuals, families and households deal with energy bills. The program and agency provide financial assistance in emergency situations to eligible families and individuals who are struggling with paying their utility bills, and who are in danger of losing home energy during a crisis or emergency.
  • Emergency food and shelter - Provides emergency assistance and grants to low and moderate income individuals, and the funds can be used for food, housing expenses and utility bills.
  • Weatherization - Is a free program that helps people conserve energy. The work performed on eligible peoples homes includes adding attic insulation and ventilation, window and door replacement and repair, caulking, weatherstripping of doors, insulation of electric hot water heaters, window glazing, and repair of exterior walls, ceilings and floors.
  • Other services in Okaloosa County include educational support from Early Head Start, job placement and training, and more. Find financial help from Tri-County Community Council.

Community Action Program Committee provides assistance in the region. Several of the programs are offered as the result of federal government funding, and those include LIHEAP, the Head Start child development, and weatherization. However there are also case managers on site who work with clients on self-sufficiency matters.

Staff from the Okaloosa County non-profit committee can help families locate resources and provide referrals. A major focus is on addressing the cause of poverty and offering referrals to financial assistance or homeless prevention programs, such as rental help. Click here community action.

Housing, including short term units, shelters, and transitional housing programs, operate across Crestview, Okaloosa County, and northwestern Florida. Families and individuals can explore low income apartments and homes and receive support on a long term solution. Learn more.




Okaloosa County and northwest Florida clothing banks provide basic needs to the needy. Assistance includes free holiday and Christmas goods, clothes, household supplies, vouchers, and other items. More on clothing closets northwestern Florida.

Homeless assistance from Continuum of Care - The main focus of the Okaloosa County agency is on stopping evictions and rehousing the homeless. Many non-profits and churches make up the organization, and qualified low income families and the poor can look into shelters, emergency financial aid for rent, case management, and job training. The formerly homeless may be placed into low income apartments or receive funds to pay the security deposit. More on Okaloosa Walton Homeless Continuum of Care.

Agencies may have funds for rental payments. There are some non-profits as charities that focus on this expense. Even if direct financial aid is not available for a security deposit or rent, some offer referrals or can help low income families or the elderly sign up for mediation or apply to section 8. Click more information.

Help and aid for car repairs

Christian Automotive Repair Support, also known as CARS, will help low income families with paying for and providing automobile repairs. Receive financial assistance and other support, including time from meachnica who volunteer with the charity. In addition, the CAR organization receives donated vehicles which are given to the needy who don’t have transportation. Apply, or if not qualified, then find other steps to take to find free cars.

CARS focuses on vulnerable households. Therefore most of the people helped are due to needing a car for work or medical emergencies. For details, call (850)897-3378. Click here to find programs and grants for free gasoline.





Child care

If you need child care assistance, Okaloosa-Walton Child Care Services, Inc. (850)833-9330) is a non-profit organization that can help. They can serve as a resource and referral agency that assists parents in finding quality childcare services, and can help pay for them by locating funding. They provide a program support for childcare providers and financial assistance.

By Jon McNamara

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