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Rockford Salvation Army assistance programs.

The Salvation Army partners with many non-profit organizations in Winnebago County and Rockford Illinois to provide emergency assistance and other services to the less fortunate. Every year thousands of unemployed residents, seniors, children, and others who are struggling receive some form of help.

Some of the resources are seasonal by nature, such as Christmas or school assistance. Others may be offered year round, including food and employment.

Seasonal Programs in Winnebago include some or all of the following.

  • Postal Food Drive will try to collect canned goods and more for the homeless and struggling.
  • Clothes for Kids, which usually runs during August, is an attempt to get school supplies and backpacks for the low income and students in particular. It is often run in partnership with the Salvation Army Koats for Kids program, which is free winter coats, hats, and other items.
  • Christmas assistance is offered from Adopt a Family, Angel Tree, and more. This allows people from the Winnebago community to buy gifts for, and give back, to children and the working poor in the community.
  • The Food for Needy Drive and Christmas Toy Shop are other Rockford Illinois resources that are focused on the holidays.

As indicated some assistance programs are offered year round. These include utility and energy bill assistance and client food choice pantry. Case managers can also help clients and women with domestic violence issues, usually in partnership with Remedies Domestic Violence Shelter. Job training and employment resources may be available as well. Or stop by or call for case Management and referrals to other regional or state of Illinois programs.

The Winnebago locations also works closely with other non-profits such as the list below.

  • The United Way of Rock River Valley may contribute some funding to the local Salvation Army.
  • Energy and water bill assistance may be offered by NICOR Sharing Program, Rock Energy Cooperative Care Program, LIHEAP, the American Water H2O Program and even FEMA.





  • Some job training and employment resources may be administered by the Rockford Rescue Mission as well as the non-profit Workforce Connection.
  • The Salvation Army Thrift Stores, Crusader Clinic, Rosecrance, and Community Foundation of Northern Illinois are all additional agencies to call for support, referrals, and help with basic needs.

The Rockford Illinois Salvation Army, and for that matter all locations, place a great emphasis on helping struggling families. They offer clients a wide array of services and assistance programs. This can include (for children) quality daycare, tutoring, basketball leagues and summer camps. There are also several character building programs that help kids get off to the right start in life. These can help students and children develop attitudes and skills which can lead to success over the long term.

Other social services available are extensive. Resources can dramatically alter the lives of hundreds of families from Winnebago County who face daunting circumstances such as homelessness or unemployment. Programs available, including making the holidays happier for less fortunate to direct financial aid, have helped many a struggling individual. Other examples of programs offered include families with seasonal assistance to providing quality housing for low-income seniors, free health clinics or teaching children to read. Some emergency cash grants may be offered to pay utility bills, including water costs or heating bill during the winter. The Salvation Army is involved in people’s lives and your community. If a center can't meet your needs, call them for referrals.

The Salvation Army of Winnebago County is located at 416 S. Madison St., Rockford, IL. Call the center at 815-972-1135.




By Jon McNamara

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