Waccamaw Economic Opportunity Council assistance programs.

Residents of Horry, Georgetown, and Williamsburg County South Carolina can contact the Waccamaw Economic Opportunity Council for support. The organization serves as the regional non-profit community action agency. Most of the services available are targeted towards encouraging and helping people maintain self-sufficiency. However they may be able to help low income families apply for financial assistance, including assistance for energy bills, rent, food, and other social services.

When in a crisis, the non-profit may have funding available as part of the General Emergency Assistance Program, or GEAP. This was created in an effort to assist households that are facing a crisis situation. Grants or funds from GEAP can be used to pay for partial rent or mortgage payments, food, clothing, or maybe even car repairs. Additional support may be provided for utility bill or medical costs. The applicant needs to have experienced a sudden reduction in household income that they did not cause, meet income and other conditions.

Government funds that are part of the Community Services Block Grant are used by Waccamaw Economic Opportunity Council to provide this aid. Applicants will also need to go through case management to achieve and maintain self-sufficiency.

One of the requests in high demand in Horry County and South Carolina is for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program or LIHEAP. This is a federal government funded program that provides both emergency and non-emergency household energy bill assistance to the less fortunate.

The objective of LIHEAP is to help the state’s low-income and working poor households pay the price of home energy. This can include either heating and/or cooling bills. The program will also increase energy self-sufficiency which will thereby reduce the vulnerability resulting for energy needs. Payments are made directly to vendors or the energy company and will be credited to the applicant’s bill.

Waccamaw Economic Opportunity Council also oversees a crisis component of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. This can offer outreach and help families that are faced with a disconnection or shut off of their service. Continue with LIHEAP in South Carolina.





Other utility assistance may be offered from Project Share. This is a local, non-profit program which consists of donations from subscriber and corporations. This assistance is for customers from Santee Electric Cooperative, Progress Energy and SCE&G. The funds are used to supplement any government LIHEAP aid, and the community action agency can advice people on the application process.

Head Start is the primary federally-funded child development program. It is fully comprehensive and is targeted at 3 and 4 year old children from low income families. Besides offering them with learning activities, the program ensures that infants and young children receive needed medical services, including dental check-ups, age-appropriate screening and immunizations, and social services and nutrition. A family service plan was also developed in an effort to help improve the ability of the family to meet their basic needs.

Save money from the Weatherization Assistance Program, or WAP. This is a federal government funded program that provides free advice and assistance with reducing household energy consumption. This is done by applying energy conservation measures to the home.

Low-income families and senior citizens can get help with reducing the heating and cooling costs. As indicated, the focus is on the elderly in Horry County and other area, people with disabilities, and families with young children. Weatherization will help improve the energy efficiency of their homes while ensuring their health and safety. Other benefits can include the health and safety of the home is improved too. Dial 843-234-4140 for more information. All applications will be taken on an appointment basis only.

Food assistance is available. There are many pantries in Horry and Georgetown County. Also, children and students can benefit from the Summer Food Service Program.

Applications are processed by the Waccamaw Economic Opportunity Council for this and other government benefits. Another main resource available is the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs. Many of these are run by funds and grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Find a list of free food pantries in Horry County.




The main addresses of the Waccamaw Economic Opportunity Council are as follows. As noted, they support both Horry as well as Georgetown County.

  • Conway Office, 1261 Hwy 501 East, Suite D, Conway, SC 29526, call (843) 234-4130
  • Georgetown Office, 1837 North Fraser, Georgetown, South Carolina 29440, telephone (843) 546-6161
  • Kingstree Office, 128 East Mill Street, Suite B, Kingstree, SC 29556, call (843) 355-9922
  • Loris Office, 3811 Walnut Street, Loris, SC 29569, dial (843) 756-6562
  • Myrtle Beach Office, 936 Broadway, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina 29577, main phone (843) 626-7270


By Jon McNamara

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