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Rockingham County New Hampshire assistance programs.

Find housing assistance, including rent help, mortgage prevention services, and energy bill help in Rockland County. There is also free food from churches, grants to pay bills from charities, and government assistance for low income families. Find how to apply for financial aid in Rockingham County along with gasoline vouchers, job programs, and general case management.

Receive funds and access to numerous assistance programs from Rockingham Community Action. They aid families throughout southern New Hampshire. They are based in Portsmouth, but have additional locations. They can be reached at (603) 431-2911.

  • Rent and Security Deposit Assistance
    Receive no-interest Security Deposit loans which are provided to lower and middle income households from the Housing Security Guarantee Program (HSGP). In addition, additional assistance with paying security deposit and/or first month’s rent, which is provided in the form of a loan, may be accessed by families or individuals who are homeless or on the brink of homelessness
  • Holiday Assistance Program
    Provides holiday assistance to those families in need of help.
  • Emergency Food Pantries
    Families can receive food aid if they are facing severe economic hardship and are critically low on food or other nutritious items.
  • Utility Bill Assistance
    When enough funds are available to the Rockingham County agency, they can provide free grants toward paying utility bills.
  • Housing Crisis Assistance
    There are some limited funds to provide grants to help prevent a foreclosure. New Hampshire has also started a new foreclosure mediation program.




  • Cash grants
    Emergency financial aid grants may be available to help low-income households for the payment of rent expenses, mortgage, heating oil, electricity, or fuel for households facing evictions, utility terminations, foreclosures, or lack of fuel.

Financial assistance

Towns throughout New Hampshire are required to provide help with paying certain bills and living expenses. This is per a state law that was passed many years ago. Some of the bills and expenses that they may help pay include medical prescriptions, provide rent help, assistance for utility bills (including heating, electric, and water), offer emergency medical care, and other forms of assistance. Call your local town office and refer to this. Brentwood (603) 642-6400, Exeter (603) 778-0591 Kensignton (603) 772-5423. Also click here to read about how to buy low priced heating oil.

Exeter St. Vincent DePaul – A team of social workers and case managers advocate on behalf of the low income. They will work with those in need to assess the financial problem they have and make appropriate referrals. An emergency fund is offered in limited circumstances on a one time basis. There includes money for fuel bills, housing and more.

The Rockingham County Saint Vincent also addresses other needs. This may include free medical or dental, Medicaid applications, food, and even help completing and filing federal and state of NH income taxes. Many resources are available. Also get help in applying for government benefits. 53 Lincoln Street, Exeter, New Hampshire 03833. More on Rockingham County St. Vincent de Paul assistance programs.





Salvation Army – Programs offered, on a limited basis, include electricity assistance, free food, holiday assistance, case management and much more. A thrift store may also have free winter coats or school supplies as well for Rockingham families. Locations are at

  • Northwood, NH 03261, call (603) 942-5488 for service.
  • 15 Middle Street, Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03802, (603) 436-2606
  • Additional social services may be administered. Learn more.

Dress 4 School Success is based in Hampton, New Hampshire. The main purpose of Dress 4 School Success, which is a 501(c)3 non profit organization, is to provide clothing to all Kindergarten through grade 12 students that are in need. All items are given to qualifying students free of charge. Students can be referred by Rockingham or Hampton social workers or school personnel.

Discounts for water and sewer bills are provided by the city of Portsmouth. While the terms and conditions vary, some households may receive up to 25% off their bills. Other low income families may be provided grants for their water costs, and any assistance will be short term only. Read Portsmouth water bill assistance.

Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society - This is a charitable nonprofit organization that provides financial, referrals, educational, and other assistance to members of the Naval Services of the United States. Their immediate family members may also receive assistance when in need of help. To do this, loans, counseling, grants, various services, and referral to other community resources and government programs are available. Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03804, call (207) 438-1832

Portsmouth City Office – This is the local city and town welfare program. Services are required to provide grants and financial assistance for basic necessities such as heat, food, shelter, rent, mortgage payments, electricity and gas bills, water, necessary clothing, transportation, and prescription medication. Basic telephone service may be paid for as well if necessary for safety or health reasons. 1 Junkins Avenue, City Hall, Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03801

Rockingham Catholic Charities works with churches, non-profits, and other organizations in the county to help the needy. Some assistance is offered directly by Catholic Charities, however most of it is provided by referrals. Some of what is available includes assistance for immigrants and seniors, free food, hot meals, and holiday programs. Support is offered for patients and people that have just left a hospital too. They are a leading charity in the region. Learn more.





Rockingham and southern New Hampshire residents can get help at Christmas or other holidays. What may be offered is as follows.

  • Small toys, free presents and gifts for children, both boys and girls.
  • Hot meals to seniors, families in poverty, and the homeless.
  • Christmas or Thanksgiving food baskets.
  • Locate other resources. Find free holiday programs in Rockingham County.

Community clinics

Greater Derry Community Health Services Access is a facility that provides access to primary and specialty health care, behavioral health support, prescription medication when ordered in network, dental care and case management. Income restrictions apply. Dial (603) 425-2545

Lamprey Health Care is another Rockingham New Hampshire based community clinic that takes the family practice approach to medical care and focuses on  health education, prevention, and the health and well being of the family (parent, children, etc.) as a whole. Call (603) 895-3351

In addition to those two locations, Rockingham County New Hampshire has several other health and dental care centers that may have free services for the low income. Click here for additional information and options for medical bill help.

Debt and foreclosure counseling

Family Debt Arbitration is a non-profit organization that can be reached at (800) 747-2614. They offer credit and debt counseling, foreclosure assistance and advice, debt consolidation, and budget counseling, another other services that are available.

Rockingham County food and other household products

The following pantries and centers may provide free food, household items, clothes, or other forms of assistance to local families who need help.

First Baptist Church - Derry NH (603) 421-1897

St. Jude Roman Catholic Parish - Londonderry New Hampshire (603) 434-1827

Shepherd's Pantry - Over 100 people per week may be able to get access to free food and personal care items. Windham NH (603) 432-2150





St. Lukes United Methodist Church - Derry NH. They offer an emergency food pantry. (603) 434-4767

Find help, such as free groceries or meals, from other charities. In addition to those food banks and distribution centers, find more local Rockingham County food pantries.


By Jon McNamara

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