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Assistance programs Smith County Texas.

Find how Smith County families can get financial help. Options range from free items, such as food, medical or dental care or clothing to furniture. There are also agencies that give grant money or emergency financial assistance. The programs in the Tyler Texas and county region are offered at churches, non-profits, government offices and local charities. They offer help to pay for bills or rent, security deposits and other costs along with free advice on overcoming a challenge.

Many low income families qualify for financial help. Others get help building financial literacy or free stuff, including Christmas gifts, furniture, or school supplies from Tyler area charities. Any type of support, whether cash assistance, section 8 HUD housing choice vouchers, SSI disability or low income housing is always combined with case management in Smith County Texas.

Rent help, eviction prevention, energy bill help and homeless services in Smith County

There are also utility bill assistance programs. Find grants for energy bills and ways to lower electric bills. Various agencies offer support. If you are looking for cash grants to pay an energy bills, or just need to save some money on them, then the local community action agency, Greater East Texas CAP (GETCAP), may be able to help. This non-profit organization offers a couple services that may help you.

  • They offer an energy / utility bill assistance program. This provides services and other aid on a “one-time” only basis to people who need help. The funds are usually targeted at households who are struggling with paying their water, utility, and electric bills. While anyone who is behind and needs help can apply, target clients of the utility program include the elderly/disabled, unemployed, households with children under six years of age, and working low-income families.
  • Another option is the weatherization program. This program is free to qualified households. The primary goal is to help people save on their monthly utility bills. Services offered as part of weatherization were designed to stop air infiltration in the home of the working poor, low-income elderly and disabled clients.




  • As indicated, the program is free. There are items such as repairing/replacing doors and windows, insulating floors and attics, adding caulking and weather stripping are performed to help make homes and apartments more comfortable. The free updates can help people conserve energy.

Greater East Texas CAP offers many other emergency financial assistance progrrams, social services and support. Whether employment or other aid, support is offered. Call them at (936) 564-2491

The local Salvation Army runs a program known as Red Shield Social Services. Call the Tyler based agency at 903-592-4361. If you apply and are signed up as a client, you will be provided access to various resources and services. The program focuses on the local homeless population, the working poor as well as those who are at-risk of becoming homeless in the Smith County area.

The main goal is to help people become self-sufficient over the long term. Some examples of what may be offered in Smith County includes grants for emergency rental assistance, free food, clothing, and holiday assistance including free Christmas gifts for kids from Angel Tree. There is also a homeless shelter, summer camp for kids, and even school supply giveaway events. Read Smith County Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army in Texas also offers clients of the program a true “second chance” at life and to get back on their feet by supporting such basic needs, and help people pay for bills or other debts. The individual who seeks material or financial aid can get help with employment, budgeting, debt reduction, education, rent help, energy bill assistance and permanent housing. Tyler is part of the statewide network. Additional information on Salvation Army in Texas.

If you need any type of help, whether it is for paying rent, energy bills, or need assistance getting information on local charities and non-profits, the Panhandle Community Services is the place to contact. Call the community action agency at (806) 372-2531.





This non-profit organization offers those in need a wide variety of programs and services. Some of the assistance programs they offer include Head Start, which can provide education services and food for low income children. Energy bill assistance is offered, mostly to help people prevent a disconnection of their service. They may offer limited financial assistance for paying rent and housing expenses. And last, but not least, they are a tremendous resource to use to learn about local charities, non-profits, government programs, and other places to turn to for assistance. Find details on Panhandle community action programs.

Housing Authority of Tyler is a leading government affiliate to contact for information on rental and housing issues. The agency will, among other things, have information on section 8 housing vouchers (which can be used to subsidize rent), a listing of low-income housing units in Smith County, details on fair housing rights and obligations, and landlord/tenant solutions. Or learn about government foreclosure prevention resources. 900 West Gentry Pkwy, Tyler, TX 75702, phone 903-531-1303.

Helping Hands of Kilgore – Resources offered include limited prescriptions, bus tickets for Kilgore area residents to Tyler and Longview, and limited assistance with paying for utilities and emergency gasoline. A food pantry is also offered. 201 South Martin, Kilgore, TX 75662, dial 903-984-1796

Find Tyler Texas rent assistance and agencies that support the entire county. Low income families as well as the disabled and senior citizens are some of the main beneficiaries. The non-profits may help clients apply for a grant for paying their rent, charities offer security deposit help, and there is support in locating a new, low income apartment. Read Smith County Texas rent assistance.

St Paul Children's Foundation provides services across Smith County and nearby areas. Other assistance programs are offered for immigrants and seniors in the Tyler Texas region and can include clothing, free food, summer cooling fans and meals. They help seniors, immigrants, children, and the vulnerable. Call them for information on resources for low income families. If there is financial aid, it is limited to referrals only. 1358 East Richards, Tyler, TX 75702, phone 903-531-9455.

Mineola Kindness Kottage is a non-profit community organization that provides emergency utility bill assistance, clothes closet, resale shop, and a food pantry. Address is 119 North Johnson Street, Mineola, Texas 75773, phone number 903-569-9197.

Any items, or help from the resale shop, is combined with other savings, discounts, and general support. The volunteers will help shoppers learn how to budget, shop smarter, and furnish their home. As any money saved can be towards paying other general living expenses. Continue to get tips on saving money while shopping.

PATH - People Attempting To Help can potentially provide help with paying TXU utility bills. Dental referrals for extractions may be offered too. All aid is very limited in frequency and amount provided. Call this Tyler program at 903-597-4044.





St. Vincent De Paul may help and offer financial assistance with bills such as rent, water, and gas. The parishes have a thrift store, clothing closet and a food pantry is offered too. There are multiple churches in Smith County, such as Immaculate Conception Conference. The location is 410 South College, Tyler, Texas 75702. Phone 903-592-0027, or more Smith County St. Vincent de Paul programs.

Smith County free medical clinics and public health care

Bethesda Health Clinic – Is a primary medical service provider. Provides labs and other medical tests. Additional health services include ultrasounds, x-rays, dental care including fillings and extractions. Wellness programs and diabetic education may also be provided. A sliding fee scale is in place to help you save on and pay your medical bills. Phone number is 903-596-8353

Christus House Clinic has very basic health care, such as blood pressure checks and diabetes test. Call 903-894-0109 for information. The center can also provide assistance with completing applications for pharmaceutical company assistance and drug programs. Read more on free or low cost medications.

Good Shepherd Medical Center – Services include laboratory and x-rays, primary medical care, women’s health services, pediatric care, and health and wellness education. 1600 East Broadway, Gladewater, Texas, 75647, call 903-845-3411

Life Time Health Center - Family health services are offered. In addition, women's health services include contraceptive planning management, routine screening, abnormal pap smear management and treatment, STD testing for men and women, and hormone therapy. Phone number is 903-534-0773

Sharon Community Clinic provides care on a first come, first serve basis. Assists patients for treatment of illnesses or minor injuries. The community clinic also offers at-cost well-check pap smear, low-cost x-ray, at-cost lab work, free EKG, free pregnancy test and free urine test. Address is 12216 FM 3226, Arp, TX 75750, call 903-566-1564

Community Health Clinics of Northeast Texas provides services for both children and adults. Some of what is offered and available from doctors, nurses and medical professionals includes case management for referral services, preventative healthcare for adults and children, adult and children medical services, physicals, vaccines, diabetic testing and control, STD testing, high blood pressure, healthy lifestyle education, mental health services, and HIV/AIDS testing and control.  Call 903-533-7400

Special Health Resources For Texas Inc. – This health center provides a number of services including immunizations, confidential HIV testing, case management for HIV/AIDS, outpatient services, STD prevention education, peer education, prescription assistance, dental care, , peer counseling, transportation, volunteer services, housing assistance, and referrals to specialists. 1308 Clinic Dr., Tyler, TX 75701. Call 903-597-7558

The Bethesda Health Clinic (phone 903-596-8353) was created to provide affordable health and medical care for individuals working or living in Smith County Texas. The program is focused on low income patients. The clinic generally provides primary care, including ancillary services such as labs, x-rays, EKGs, etc., prescriptions, education and exercise programs, along with considerable subspecialty access. The community clinic also provides affordable dental care, and counseling on a limited basis to those who need help. Read more free Texas Dental clinics.

Smith County residents as well as other low income families often struggle to get or pay for prescription drug medications. There is help out there. Many groups give free or reduced cost medications. There may be low cost or free generic prescription drugs, discount cards, or free medications from pharmaceutical assistance programs or community clinics. All types of conditions can be met.

Free food assistance programs

Tyler and the greater Smith County Texas area is supported by a number of churches, food banks, charities, soup kitchens and non-profits that free stuff. Get meals, groceries, as well as emergency food boxes to anyone that needs help. The locations will be open limited hours, and will do their best to not turn anyone away.

There are many other food pantries in the region. Or low income families can apply for USDA supported programs such as food stamps or WIC. Click here for an extensive listing of the locations, including phone numbers and addresses. Some of the leading locations in Smith County are below. or find other free food pantries in Smith County.







Love In Deed Food Pantry is located in Tyler and can be reached at 903-566-4226. The center can help families, seniors, and the less fortunate in the community.

Tyler Saint Vincent De Paul. Phone number 903-592-0027. Food, social services, referrals, and other assistance is offered for the homeless and people who meet strict income guidelines. A clothing closet is also available, as well as baby food and formula.

Grace Community Food Pantry is another location for meals, groceries, and perishable items. Call 903-593-3800.


By Jon McNamara

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