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Assistance programs Shelby County Alabama.

Find where to go, and how to apply, for free items, financial help, and other support in Shelby County. Assistance is for low income families, the poor, and elderly among others. Find money to pay rent from a church, cash assistance from the government Department of Human Resources, grants to pay utility bills, free food or school supplies medical care, and other help. Many charities, churches, and social service agencies give financial assistance or free stuff to the less fortunate in the Alabaster area and Shelby County.

In some cases material goods are provided. This may be free gasoline vouchers or Christmas toys for kids. Or there is free government low income cell phones for the very low income or section 8 HUD vouchers. A number of financial assistance programs and free stuff is offered.

Emergency financial assistance for paying bills

The Shelby County Salvation Army offers struggling and low income residents access to numerous programs and services. Some of the services offered include:

  • Emergency food for a pantry they have on site and other locations they coordinate with.
  • Funds and grants that can be used to pay for prescription medication.
  • Discounted and low cost, high quality clothing.
  • Access and information on community-based social welfare services, local charities, and information on both federal and Alabama assistance programs. This may include linkage to security deposit programs in Alabama.
  • Back to school assistance programs.
  • Other support is available too, ranging from thrift stores to Christmas gifts toys or hot meals.

Contact the Shelby County Salvation Army at (205) 328-2420. Many other resources are provided too, and applicants can continue to learn more on Salvation Army Shelby County programs.

Shelby Emergency Assistance provides temporary assistance in a crisis to those that meet income and other conditions. The program may have funds for paying for utility bills, rent, medications, or food. Or get referrals to other local non-profits or charities in the region.




The program is offered in close partnership with the social services department. Other services available in the area can include clothing and household goods from a thrift store, financial literacy and budgeting classes, and emergency housing support. The main location is 620 Valley Street, Montevallo, Alabama 35115, (205) 665-1942, or more on Shelby County emergency assistance.

Calera First United Methodist Church mostly can help with home repairs for seniors or the disabled. In some cases some funds may be available for paying a cooling or utility bill. Other programs include food from a pantry and referrals to local charities. Location is 6107 Highway 31, Calera, AL 35040. Call (205) 668-0951, or learn more on Calera First United Methodist Church.

Eleventh Area Of Alabama - OAC processes applications for the federal government Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and FEMA. This can provide cash grants, one time per year, for paying energy bills or maybe housing expenses from FEAM aid. The focus is on senior citizens, the disabled, and families with young children. A crisis component is also available. 200 West College Street, Columbiana, Alabama 35051, dial (205) 669-3836.

American Red Cross - Shelby County Service Center administers Project Share. The non-profit can assist qualified elderly, heads of the household, and disabled households in the area. The program can help those facing unexpected financial challenges with the payment of energy bills. 4524 Southlake Parkway, Hoover, AL 35244. Call (205) 987-2792 for information.

Regional free back to school supply programs are offered for struggling households. Kids can get free backpacks, school supplies (elementary, middle, high school and kindergarten), food, lunch boxes, and many other items. Find details on Birmingham free school supplies.





As many as 10 organizations provide emergency rent help. They can also arrange short term shelter, grants for paying a security deposit or moving expenses, and other housing programs. Find rent assistance in Shelby County.

Eleventh Area of Alabama Opportunity Action Committee is the community action agency. The goal of this organization is to help people overcome poverty, increase their income, and gain self-sufficiency. While some short term financial aid, or referrals to it, may be offered, the non-profit really focuses on establishing self-sufficiency as well as employment.

Emergency aid includes applications for federal government and state of Alabama aid such as LIHEAP or food stamps. These programs can help customers with paying their utility bills and feeding their families. Rental assistance may be provided from section 8 housing vouchers.

As mentioned, helping people overcome the cause of their hardship is a main function. So the Shelby County community action agency may offer information on job training or search assistance. Or learn about credit repair and debt reduction workshops. Another major focus is on referring clients to free job placement programs in Alabama.

A number of other services are provided by Eleventh Area of Alabama Opportunity Action Committee. Call the Clanton Alabama non-profit community action agency at (205) 755-1204.

Shelby County Department of Human Resources is the main government public assistance office. They process applications for many benefits for the low income, elderly, disabled and unemployed among others. They include USDA programs such as SNAP food stamps or free school lunches. There is low income Medicaid health insurance, TANF cash aid from Family Assistance, Job and Work Program, Child Care Vouchers and many others. The address is 87 AL-70, Columbiana, AL 35051. Or dial (205) 669-3000. Or find more details on financial help from the government.

Shelby County housing programs are available for families on the verge of eviction. Some local shelters are available for the homeless. The locations provide a play to stay over the short to mid term. Individuals can also meet with case managers and social workers in an effort to find a new, more affordable home or apartment in the Columbiana area. Receive help with your housing needs. Read more on short term housing in Birmingham.





Child care assistance

Childcare Resources provides financial assistance for people who need to use child care during their work day. They serve as a central resource for counseling, advice, and information about childcare, they also provide training for childcare providers, and offer numerous services for families and individuals that need childcare. (205) 252-1991.

Health care

Low income minorities who live in central Alabama and Shelby County, primarily Hispanics, can get free health care from the Cahaba Valley Health Care. The organization is a nonprofit organization that is based in central Alabama. They are committed to providing free and discounted health care to low income and other uninsured people in the central part of the state. Dial (205) 991-8771 to find about more about the health care resources and programs provided by Cahaba Valley Health Care.

Free legal aid and representation

The Legal Aid society of Birmingham also covers Shelby County residents. The non-profit law firms has on staff lawyers and other professionals that provide free legal services, advice, and representation to the thousands of low and moderate income families. There will be free lawyers assigned to adults, elderly and children of the area. Civil needs are addresses by the Society. Click here to learn more on free lawyers in Alabama, or contact the agency at (205) 251-3516.

Free groceries and meals from Shelby County pantries

Amazing Grace Worship Center of Alabaster offers emergency food, groceries, and maybe holiday meals. Call (205) 664-8484.

Asbury UMC runs a Food Pantry for the low income in Shelby County as well. (205) 995-1700.







Shelby Baptist Association Church & Community Ministries offers clothing and furniture, emergency food, and has thrift store on site. Other services include English as a second language adult classes. 205 Walton Street, Columbiana, Alabama 35051, call (205) 669-7858.

Several other non-profits offer free food to families in a crisis, if they meet the terms of their programs. Or the staff will help clients apply for EBT cards as part of food stamps in Alabama. There are also free soup kitchens for hot meals and government SNAP applications too. Read more on Shelby County free food pantries.


By Jon McNamara

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