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Church assistance programs Orlando and Orange County.

There are churches all across Orange County Florida that help households in need. The assistance is wide ranging, but focuses on food, housing, support for children, and senior care among other resources. But many other forms of help may be offered; it just depends on the church.

Most of the faith based groups are located in the city or Orlando (including the International Harvest Church) or right outside of it. But coverage is provided all across the County to a resident that lives within the parish boundaries. No matter the clients background, more information on how to apply for a local church is below.

Who do Orange County churches assist?

They do not discriminate. All religions can apply to a parish in their zip code or community. Clients may be Catholic, Jewish, Baptist, Protestant, or some other religion. Also, there is help given to immigrants and Spanish speakers, including individuals from Mexico.

The Orlando churches also operate programs for different groups. With a large number of senior citizens in central Florida, volunteers operate low cost meals on wheels as well as congregate meal programs for them. There are also programs focused on the youth, including free school supply drives, summer camp, and free Christmas gifts as well. The large number of immigrants in Orange County can also get help. Many other groups of people can also be assisted.

May people in the Orlando area turn to a church as they can't afford their rent or medications on their current income. So St. Vincent Church and other agencies know that families that live on food stamps, Social Security, unemployment, child support, or Workman's compensation often struggle to make ends meet. So help may be offered to these groups.

Financial assistance, food, clothing, and more from churches

Resources are available from St Andrews Catholic Church (801 North Hastings Street, Orlando, Florida 32808) as well as other locations. Many of the parishes that offer grants for paying bills or, in some cases loans, to the community are part of the Catholic Charity organization.




Any type of financial help for paying light bills or housing costs (such as rent or a mortgage) is combined with financial management counseling from an Orange County church. There are staff that work with the client and strongly encourage self-sufficiency among them. After all, organizations such as The Society of Saint Vincent Churches in Orlando and Orange County want to end the cycle of poverty.

Funds are only given to those people with proof of need. So a tenant seeking help with their rent to avoid homelessness needs to have a copy of their lease as well as landlord phone and fax numbers. People seeking utility bill from an Orlando area church need to have historical receipts for past payments for their electric or light bills, and they need a budget to account for other monthly household expenses.

Free clothes and food are offered from many churches in Orange County. Volunteers will pass out shoes, school uniforms, work boots, slacks, and items for job seekers too. For those that are hungry, food boxes are given out. Or the elderly can sign up for Meals on Wheels. One place to try is Chancey Road Christian Church at 34921 Chancey Road, Zephyrhills, Florida 33541, phone (813) 713-2511.

Both senior citizens, the unemployed as well as children in Orange county Florida can get help from a faith based organization. One of the largest is International Harvest Church (address: 2740 Old Winter Garden Road, Orlando, FL 32805, phone (407) 849-2226). They offer a few main programs for the younger and older age groups.

  • A back to school supply event gives students free clothing, haircuts, shoes, and a backpack for their books.
  • Operation Kindness is when the local churches assemble volunteers to provide minor home repairs as well as yard-work, painting services, and other support.
  • Volunteers may drive a senior citizen to a doctor appointment in Orlando, or they provide free bus tokens.
  • During Christmas, both seniors and children (as well as their families) can be given a hot meal or Christmas gift.
  • Immigrant children can sign up for ESL classes, job placement and work with a volunteer from church to help them transition to the region.
  • Education development is from Redeeming Light Center Church - Community Center at 109 Washington Avenue, Orlando, FL 32810, phone (407) 660-1288. They arrange reading classes, tutorial assistance and other support for kids age K to 12.
  • Job training programs are also offered in partnership with the federal government. Locate job placement programs.





Summer Camps are also held by King Of Kings Evangelical Lutheran Church (1101 North Wymore Road, Maitland, FL 32751, phone (407) 628-56960. A counselor will provide support to kids that enroll. There will be a minimal cost involved in this service. Activities include Indoor and Outdoor Sports, Crafts, Movies, Games, Field Trips, and more. There are also lunches and snacks given each week.

Find how to apply for help from churches in Orlando area

For a list of churches that may assist the working poor in Orange County, send an email too In order to get financial help for paying bills or housing costs, be prepared with proof of income for the last 2 months. Copies of Social Security Cards, license, immigration status, and other documentation will also be needed.

By Jon McNamara

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