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Assistance programs Roanoke County.

Resources and organizations that provide help with bills

Two organizations in the Roanoke area offer programs and resources to struggling and low income people that can both help them pay short term bills and debts, and they can also assist the individual with becoming self sufficient over the long term. Total Action Against Poverty, Inc. (TAP) is the local Roanoke community action agency, and another charity organization is Roanoke Area Ministries' Day Shelter.

Help for mortgage and rent from Homeless Intervention Program (HIP)
The goal of this program offered by TAP is to provide short term and limited financial assistance, as well as housing counseling to low and moderate income families and individuals who are experiencing a temporary financial crisis and are at risk of being evicted, or who are facing homelessness. Aid is even available for those who are currently homeless. Housing assistance from HIP is intended to facilitate their ability to maintain their current housing or obtain permanent housing.

This program will assist people with a Housing Crisis for mortgage payments, rents, and also rent or security deposits. There are of course some qualifications, including your crisis needs to be temporary in nature and you also must prove that you were able to pay your rent, mortgage, and bills before this recent crisis happened. Also note that this program can only assist you one time per lifetime. People who are found to be eligible for this program may receive either loans or grants for paying their rent or mortgage payments and/or rent security deposits. Clients must also be found to be self-sufficient over the long term. Find additional ways to get help with mortgage.

Emergency utility bill assistance program
The resource, know as TAP Housing and Community Development, was created to help low income families who are currently experiencing a temporary financial crisis due to a short term crisis or some type of unavoidable circumstances with their utility payments. Note that the funding for this is very limited and the agency may run out.

When available, this utility bill assistance program is open to families that reside in one of the following cities, jurisdictions, or counties: Roanoke City, Roanoke County, City of Salem, City of Clifton Forge, Botetourt County, City of Covington, Alleghany County, Buena Vista, Rockbridge County, Craig County, and City of Lexington. The funding is limited, and currently the program provides financial assistance or cash grants not to exceed $75.00 for water, $100.00 for electric bill payments, and $150.00 for gas bills.




Family Support
This resource offered by TAP provides counseling and support to families of children in enrolled in schools and child care. The organization has Family Development Specialists who will work closely with families to help them identify and meet their own goals and become self-sufficient in areas such as job training, employment, parenting, housing, education, transportation, budgeting, and financial skills.

Emergency Financial Aid
The Roanoke Area Ministries’ is another organization that people can turn to for aid. They have the Emergency Financial Aid (EFA) program, and the office will assist those individuals who are currently living Roanoke City. However, the office will accept work with people who live outside the city, and they will accept requests from individuals living outside Roanoke city provided they have a referral from the charity or community action agency in the area in which they live.

The Ministries resources are limited as well, and as a result they work their hardest to ensure that the funds are going to people who are truly in a crisis situation. They can provide funds and grants that can be used to pay utility bills, car repairs, rent, prescription medications, and other short term needs that people may have.

Both of these organizations (Roanoke Ministries and Total Action) can help low income families, veterans, seniors and others in Roanoke County. Contact them to learn more about services such as Individual Development Accounts, Mortgage Default Assistance, or loans to pay rent as part of the Homeless Prevention Program.

Call Total Action Against Poverty, Inc. at 540-283-4800 or the Ministries at (540) 345-8850. Or read more Total Action for Progress.

Catholic Charities supports the Roanoke region and several other nearby counties and towns. A number of assistance programs, case management services and referrals may be offered. One of the primary resources in known as HELP, and this can provide low income families with financial aid for basic needs such as rent, utilities, food, and more.





The organization is also committed to addressing the underlying needs of the hardship. This can include services such as debt help and reduction, credit repair, and assistance with finding jobs. Case managers from Catholic Charities can also help immigrants and newcomers to the Virginia region. Some examples of other programs include St. Francis house (for diapers and clothing type items), partnerships with local churches, advice for seniors, and more. Read more Catholic Charities Roanoke Virginia.

Roanoke County Social Services offers various federal government and state of Virginia government assistance programs. Low income members of the community can apply for nutritional support from food stamps. The office can also provide information on Medicaid, affordable child care, and LIHEAP in Virginia. Other resources include Emergency Assistance to Needy Families with Children and weatherization.

Government grants can be used to pay utility bills, including cooling costs or energy bills when someone is faced with a disconnection. Income guidelines need to bet met for these various programs, and families with children, the disabled, and seniors in Roanoke are usually given priority. The main office is at 220 East Main Street, Salem, Virginia 24153. Call (804) 726-7000, or click here Virginia public assistance.

Homeless prevention and rent help is available. There is assistance for tenants facing eviction or the currently homeless (for deposits). Families with pay or quit notices or disconnects can get one time, emergency rental or utility assistance from grants or loans. More on rental assistance Roanoke.

Roanoke Area Ministries may be able to help qualified families at most once per year. Funds can pay for housing (rent or mortgage), utility bills, or even prescription medications. Some people will need a referral from a social service office. Documentation, including proof of income, will be required. (540)-981-1732

Blue Ridge AIDS Support Services offers programs but they are restricted to people with HIV/AIDS. Most of the housing and rent programs are HOPWA funded. The non-profit also offers short-term emergency assistance (homelessness prevention), long term rental assistance, and related supportive services, such as case management. (540)-400-0102

Helping Hands Fund offers referrals and emergency assistance to individuals and families in financial distress. This includes rent help when facing an eviction, security deposits, gasoline, medications, and energy bill help. 339 Salem Avenue Southwest, Roanoke, VA 24016. Call (540)853-1163

Saint John's Episcopal Church can help the low income and working poor that are dealing with a rental eviction and/or utility cutoff notice. This is a resource of last resort. (540)343-9341.

Emergency services from the Salvation Army are provided in multiple ways. They are as follows.

  • Shelter and legal aid for DV survivors.
  • Financial help for everything from heating bills to mortgages, rent, medications, and more.
  • Free toys from Angel Tree, assistance for single moms, care for seniors, and even school supplies. Other support is also available, and find more information on the Roanoke County Salvation Army.





Presbyterian Community Center. Regardless of religion, will offer emergency financial assistance and cash grants to eligible low-income families. Funds can be used to pay for utilities, rent, prescriptions, heating oil and other basic necessities. 1228 Jamison Avenue SE, Roanoke, Virginia 24013. Telephone - (540)-982-2911

Virginia Military Family Support Center serves as a resource for service members and their families. The location is an Information Clearinghouse. Programs include home repairs, a free food pantry, access to a phone or internet, and much more. Also get help in applying for VA or government benefits. (540)-400-8301

Light of Salvation International Ministries Inc. has a clothing closet and food pantry. The location offers other services as well, even including haircuts. (540)-400-6571

Roanoke Virginia food pantries

The non-profit centers, churches, and charities listed below are some of the leading places to turn to for free food, groceries, information on government support and more. Some of the centers will provide other support as well, such as clothing or free Christmas or Thanksgiving meals.

  • Celebration Church of God, 4429 Buck Mountain Road, Roanoke, Virginia (540)774-7711
  • St. Mark's Lutheran Church, 1008 Franklin Road SW, phone (540)-344-9051
  • Presbyterian Community Center, (540)982-2911
  • Manna Ministries may have boxes of food, hot meals, and more. 229 Walnut Avenue, Vinton, VA. Call (540)589-1375 for intake.
  • Vinton Baptist Church offers a food closet and may provide two boxes of food. 219 Washington Avenue. (540)-343-7685
  • Life Tabernacle Church, 801 Virginia Avenue, Vinton, Virginia 24179. Telephone (540)-344-0690
  • Bonsack Baptist Church is located at 4845 Cloverdale Road, Roanoke, VA 24019. Main phone number is (540)977-5701

Salem/Roanoke County Food Pantry can distribute groceries, meats, fruits, vegetables, carbohydrates and dairy to families in need of help. A referral is needed. (540)389-6938

Clinics and health care center

New Horizons Healthcare offers primary health care to anyone from the community. Examples of the assistance offered is below. The center will provide free and reduced priced medications to those who qualify. Preventative medicine, Immunizations, Reference lab services, and more is offered too. Behavioral services are offered in Roanoke. Or get referrals to specialists as needed. 3716 Melrose Avenue NW, Roanoke, Virginia 24017. Dial (540)283-2556 for intake. Several other community clinics and resources are available in Virginia. Learn more.







Bradley Free Clinic of Roanoke Valley is a non-profit center that provides free dental, medical and pharmacy care to the uninsured, unemployed and low income in Roanoke Valley. Services are offered by volunteer healthcare professionals, including doctors and dentists. Receive x-rays, lab work, psychiatry services and counseling, eye exams, minor surgery and more. (540)344-5156

Roanoke Rescue Mission Ministries coordinates dental clinics, medical care, psychiatric, and prescription medication assistance for the homeless. The location also provides respite care for mission guests with illnesses and injuries. (540)343-7227

By Jon McNamara














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