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Washentaw County and Ann Arbor Catholic Charities assistance programs.

Numerous resources and social services are administered by the Washentaw County Catholic Charity organization. The organization offers basic needs, emergency financial aid, and they also have partnerships with local churches and non-profits. Hundreds of families in Ann Arbor and across the county get some form of help from the charity every month. While not everyone will qualify for aid, referrals and information is offered to all, regardless of your religion, age, or race.

The Emergency Food Program is one of the primary services provided. Catholic Charities and its partners distribute free groceries, canned goods and personal care items to working poor and low-income families and individuals. Some of the resources are offered monthly and some food will be passed out on an emergency basis. In addition, qualified clients will be given referrals to other agencies in Washentaw County for clothing, housing items and other critical services as needed. Also, please do donate to the Emergency Food Program if possible as it relies on people and businesses from the community to support it.

The very low income can explore several Housing Support Services. Some are offered by Catholic Charities, often in partnership with non-profits such as Avalon Housing. The program can provide Eviction Prevention, Individualized Case Management, Housing Crisis Assistance, and Skill Training. Some limited funding for paying rent may be available.

The agency will address regional homelessness, housing instability, and other challenges. Some people are dealing with physical disability, mental illness, substance addiction and chronic medical conditions. Catholic Charities and the housing agencies focus on helping tenants pay the rent, maintain stable housing, and access other support services. Call 734.663.5858.

Frequent User Systems Engagement, or FUSE, is assistance provided to high risk adults caught in a revolving door of emergency rooms, local hospitals, rehabilitation centers and that are facing some other crisis. It is administered and paid for by the Michigan based Corporation for Supportive Housing and provides housing, care management and basic health services.

Catholic Charities helps seniors and the elderly in Washentaw County. Apply for government aid such as Medicare or Medicaid. Many local senior citizens and adults with disabilities receive assistance in making informed selections in choosing health insurance and prescription drug coverage. Work with a social worker to learn more about, and sign up for, Medicare Parts A and B, Supplemental Insurance option, and Prescription drug coverage.




A variety of other Neighborhood Services are available to help older adults and senior citizens maintain their independence. This will hopefully allow them to continue to live at home, whether that is Ann Arbor or another town. All of the cost share contributions are requested based on the residents financial ability to pay the bills and for some of their housing costs.

Components of the program include Weatherization, Home Maintenance and Minor Repairs, basic household repairs & routine maintenance, and even plumbing & electrical repairs. Contractors can provide seniors with low cost installation of safety rails, shower chairs, grab bars, and transfer benches. Or get smoke alarms & carbon monoxide detectors installed.

Funding for many of these senior programs is provided to Catholic Charities from the local Aging through the Area Agency, United Way of Washentaw County, and the County Health Organization. Other local private and corporate sponsors contribute to this program.

Information, referrals and resource advocacy are provided by your local church and Catholic Charities. Case managers try to provide information and referrals to local Washentaw County programs that best meet the needs of seniors and the low income. Caregivers can also benefit in many cases. Examples of assistance provided includes:

  • Transportation needs, including rides to a doctor appointment in Ann Arbor.
  • Free referrals to social services and health resource options in the community.
  • As indicated above, also get help in applying for government health insurance benefits, including Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Assistance with basic needs, including immediate needs for free food, shelter, medications or other basic requirements.
  • Catholic Charities also offers advocacy for caregivers and seniors regarding access and resources.




An affordable or free Tax Assistance Program is provided by highly trained volunteers. They can assist low income seniors and adults. People with disabilities can also get help. The volunteers will help them file simple income tax returns and credits. Get information about, and be sure you qualify for, the Michigan Home Heating Credit, Homestead Property deductions, and other benefits.

The main Catholic Charities centers are at 4925 Packard St, Ann Arbor, MI 48108 (call (734) 971-9781) or dial/stop by the office at 815 Taylor St in Ann Arbor. Telephone (734) 662-4462.


By Jon McNamara

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