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Polk County transitional housing and shelters.

Several non-profits in Polk County provide short term housing to struggling families, and they use a combination of shelters as well as transitional homes or apartments. The agencies will often focus on people from certain backgrounds, such as veterans or singles, and they will also help clients gain long term stability.

The programs will not only give the individual or family a place to reside, but social workers and staff from the agencies also work with the guest on identifying solutions. As part of this process, short term needs such as meals and clothing is arranged while staying at the transitional housing site. Clients will also receive budgeting support, and when the time is ready, placement is arranged for a new, low income apartment in the greater Polk County Florida region.

Zoe's Journey of Life
Main address is 635 W. 5th Street
Lakeland, Florida 33802
Call (863) 816-4072
A comprehensive approach is taken, including life skills, outreach, and placement into a new home.

Peace River Center (Lakeland)
715 North Lake Ave
Lakeland, Florida 33801
(863) 413-2566
Many of the services from Adult Residential Treatment are focused on the disabled or residents with a mental illness.

Christian Family and Youth Services
80 E Central Ave
Winter Haven, FL 33881
A faith based charity that offers social services along with transitional housing.

Lake Wales Care Center
140 E Park Ave
Lake Wales, Florida 33853
For information, call (863) 676-1949
Food, hot meals, and information on low income apartments are some of the resources available.




Lighthouse Ministries - Jay & Eloise Troxel Family Life Center
215 East Magnolia Street
Lakeland, Florida 33801
(863) 687-4076
The non-profit runs a shelter for women and children, and there is also a recovery program. This is for mid term stays and not emergencies. Other services, such as job placement and career counseling, is given to women and parents while they stay at the transitional home.

George W. Harris Youth Shelter
Address is 1060 Highway 17 South
Bartow, Florida 33830
(863) 595-0220
Short term lodging – stay is for youth from Polk under the age of 17. Victims of violence can also use the shelter.

Peace River Center
Lakeland, Florida 33801
(863) 413-2700
They operate a domestic violence shelter for both women and children, and this can include single parents. Referrals may be provided to legal aid and other support services too.

Salvation Army
320 Avenue T NW
Winter Haven, FL 33881
(863) 291-5107
Numerous shelters and transitional housing programs are provided in Polk County, or case managers will have referrals to them as part of Winter Haven Social Services. Guests will also get food, clothing, and other basic needs met. Limited financial aid for a security deposit may be offered for moving into a new home too.





Polk County Housing & Community Development
Main office is at 1290 Golfview Avenue, Suite 167
Bartow, FL 33830
Telephone number: (863) 534-5240
Referrals to shelters as well as information on public housing or section 8 may be provided. They are a leading government agency.

Talbot House Ministries of Lakeland
601 North Massachusetts Avenue
Lakeland, FL 33801
(863) 687-8475

Lighthouse Ministries, Inc - Men's Shelter
Address of the center is 117 East Magnolia Street
Lakeland, FL 33801
Main phone - (863) 687-3705
They run a shelter for males, including veterans in Polk County. Guests also have access to support services ranging from career counseling to job placement and training, among other services. Parenting and life skills are also arranged by the non-profit.




By Jon McNamara

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