WHERE TO GET HELP IN BUCKS COUNTY
THERE ARE A NUMBER OF ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS AVAILABLE IN BUCKS COUNTY FOR PEOPLE IN NEED. BELOW ARE OVERVIEWS FOR MANY OF THESE PROGRAMS AVAILABLE TO THOSE SEEKING HOUSING, FOOD, MEDICAL ASSISTANCE AND OTHER HELP SERVICES.
Bucks County Assistance Programs
Bucks County dental program
This program provides free dental care to children who live in Bucks County if they have no dental insurance. There are some income eligibility requirements, but free care is provided to many. 1-800-347-6803
Contact First Call for Help at 215.949.1660. This is a Bucks County organization that provides food aid and help.
Bucks county cash assistance/food stamps/medical assistance
Share Food Program - This group is located at 2901 W. Hunting Park Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19129, Phone # 215.223.2220. The Share Program is a large buying club that enables families and individuals to purchase food at a very low cost. For example, for only $14 in cash or food stamps plus two hours of community service, participants can receive $35 worth of fresh food. In addition, the Share Food Program will direct callers to food resource sites that are located in the five-county area. There are no household income requirements to apply.
Credit card and/or debt counseling
Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley, Inc. will provide local individuals with budget, credit card, money management, and debt counseling and free advice. The organization also provides counseling on debt reduction/elimination and debt management programs. They also offer educational, seminars and training presentation. Call them at 215.563.5665, or find additional ways to get help with debt.
Child care assistance
If you need information on selecting a competitively priced, high quality child care program or for help in paying for child care, contact the following agencies.
Bucks County energy bill assistance and housing assistance
Philadelphia County Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) - This assistance program is a federal and state of Pennsylvania resource that provides cash grants and assistance for individuals who are income-eligible. Participants do not need to have a shutoff notice in order to apply for aid.
To get help, dial the Crisis Hotline: 215.686.2590. The crisis component of LIHEAP will assists persons who receive a utility emergency shutoff notice. It also assists tenants in need of heat or heater repairs.
Another number is for the Heater Hotline: 215.568.7190. This provides emergency heater repair services for homeowners only.
Doylestown Area FISH - This agency provides emergency help with shelter, free food and groceries, rent assistance; heating and utility bill assistance; other help as requested for residents of the Central Bucks School District. Call 215-348-7172
Utility Emergency Services Fund (UESF) - Is a non-profit agency that offers utility and heating bills help to income-eligible people who receive a shut-off notice for a bill that is $500 or less. The agency's policy is to pay the bill down to a zero balance. Individuals can use the service, which is available to them after the close of LIHEAP/Crisis support services, only once every two years. Dial 215.829.0545 to learn more or to apply for heating bill assistance.
Telephone Assistance Services Lifeline, Verizon Customer Service - This will assist low and moderate income Pennsylvania customers get and keep their telephone service. Find more telephone assistance programs.
The Salvation Army Universal Telephone Assistance Program (UTAP) - This telephone program will assist Bucks County Pennsylvania customers in paying their overdue phone bills. This service is available to Verizon customers only.
Salvation Army Levittown Community Worship Center - Social services office that can assist with offering individuals food, clothing, utilities, rent and/or mortgage payment assistance (when funding is available) and referrals to government and Pennsylvania programs. Call 215-945-0717
CACLV is the local non-profit community action agency. They serve Lehigh Valley as well as offer services in the Bucks County region. Some of the programs administered are as follows.
· Housing, including foreclosure counseling, advice for first time home buyers, and referrals to loan and financial aid programs for paying rent.
· Groceries, perishable items, and canned items from regional food banks.
· Utility and energy bill assistance, including LIHEAP, the WARM Program, and conservation plans such as Low Income Usage Reduction.
· Other services are also available in the Bucks County Pennsylvania region, such as transitional housing programs and more.
Bucks County Opportunity Council, Administration Office runs an emergency shelter program, and can offer qualified individuals with information on rent assistance programs. Call (215) 345-8175
Bucks County Assistance Office, Bucks County Office Center – The county office can offer financial assistance, food stamps, health care and medical assistance, help for heating and energy bills, employment and training counseling, information and referral for social services and government programs. 1214 New Rodgers Road, Bristol, Pennsylvania 19007, 800-362-1291
The Salvation Army, Upper Bucks Service Unit. As with most of these organizations, can provide food vouchers, clothing, thrift store, and limited financial assistance for electric bills, rent, medications, and housing needs. Another focus is on helping senior citizens and children. Resources include free Christmas assistance and home delivered meals, among other programs. Employment training and career counseling services are available as well. A few centers operate in the region, including at 560 S. Main Street, Quakertown, Pennsylvania 18951, 215-529-6547. Or read more Bucks County Salvation Army programs.
Bucks County Housing Group, Inc. – The agency can help low to moderate income with housing concerns, and can help by providing affordable housing and related rent assistance and social services. Can help families move from homelessness to financial stability and permanent housing. In addition, the agency also runs a Housing Counseling department. You can meet with a counselor to learn about and apply for Homeowners Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program as well as First Time Home Buyers counseling. Foreclosure prevention also offered. They also run a few food pantries in Bucks County. 2324 Second Street Pike, Suite 17, Wrightstown, PA 18940, dial 215-598-3566
Indian Valley Housing Corporation – Runs a 90 day shelter and two year transitional housing program. Apply for counseling, case management, and other housing supportive services. 201 Main Street, P.O. Box 64183, Souderton, Pennsylvania 18964. Call 215-723-8750
Bridge of Hope Bux-Mont addresses housing issues. The non-profit provides rental assistance on a decreasing basis over a 12-24 month period. The amount paid out will depend on the applicants’ income and overall financial condition. Call (215) 361 - 1815.
Kelly Anne Dolan Memorial Fund will only support families caring for critically, terminally, disabled, chronically ill, or seriously injured children if their needs are not covered by insurance. It can help Bucks County families with paying for the following. Heating and utility bills, rent, mortgage, and other housing expenses. Funds can also pay for medical needs such as transportation, car payments, air conditioners, and medically necessary dietary supplements. Child care and funeral expenses can be paid too. (215) 643 - 0763.
Bucks County Ministries Hospitality Center helps people gain self-sufficiency from basic needs. This includes Rent/Utility Bill Assistance, Emergency Food, Medical Referrals/ Reminders, Furniture Assistance Program, Personal Hygiene, and ID. Or get referrals to Public Assistance and Housing Search Resources. 530 Church Street, Norristown, Pennsylvania, 19401. Dial (610) 277 - 1321 for information.
Bucks Montgomery Center for Human Services – This location offers emergency groceries and food assistance. Women who are interviewing for jobs can get clothing for and during initial employment. Also access case management services for financial, housing, debt, and employment related problems. Staff will also coordinate various churches, business, and other groups’ efforts to provide holiday gifts and food to the needy. 620 Jacksonville Road, Warminster, Pennsylvania 18974, 215-323-9935
Indian Valley Opportunity Center – This non-profit center can provide emergency assistance meeting to people who are economically disadvantaged (i.e. faced with short or long-term poverty) or require various educational or job finding services. 104 Main St., Souderton, Pennsylvania 18964, 215-723-5430
Rent and housing assistance - About a dozen agencies and non-profits focus on addressing housing issues. They can offer funds for paying first months rent or a security deposit, and also provide emergency cash to pay rent in order to stop an eviction.
Emergency Relief Association of Lower Bucks County, Inc. – A number of limited, modest amount of help for paying for emergency fuel, rent, heating bills, utilities, and prescriptions can be offered. Free food is also offered. 8525 New Falls Road, Levittown, Pennsylvania 19054, dial 215-547-1676
Pennridge FISH Organization - Limited emergency financial aid for rent and utilities, as well as food, clothing, and motel vouchers for the homeless. 306 N. 5th Street, P.O. Box 9, Perkasie, PA 18944 call 215-257-7616.
Free or low cost clothing and other household goods may be offered from non-profit distribution centers in the Bucks County Pennsylvania region. Low income families may receive vouchers or gift certificates for free supplies, clothing, baby goods and more. Other people may receive items at a lower price.
Center in the Park – Counselors from this non-profit can advise and refer individuals who need help. If you are struggling, and would like to talk with someone to learn about your options or get support with a personal concern, the agency can assist. Learn about programs to address financial needs such as utility or heating bill assistance, medical bills, and credit repair. (215) 848-7722.
Bucks County Department of Public Welfare – Homeless prevention programs are offered for people struggling with their rent or mortgage. Also learn about resources to help pay security deposits, or energy bill programs from the federal government such as Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Cash grants can also help pay bills in a crisis. Other programs available include food stamps, WIC, section 8 vouchers, Medicaid, and more. 1214 New Rodgers Rd, Bristol, Pennsylvania, 19007, dial (215) 781-3300.
The Peak Center, Inc. offers a resource known as Client Information and Referral Services. A coordinator is available to meet with Buck County families and individuals to provide them with assistance. Get referral services on employment opportunities, transportation assistance, housing, and rent programs. 315 West Main Street, Lansdale, PA, 19446, telephone (215) 362-7432
Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter Assistance - Low income and less fortunate families and children can receive help. Receive free gifts, toys, food, meals, and other support from non-profit organizations, charities, and churches in Bucks County.
Regional Housing Legal Services – The program known as Pennsylvania Utility Law Project (PULP) can help low-income residential utility consumers maintain affordable energy services. Apply for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), receive assistance and information regarding utility payment arrangements, and get support and advice in dealing with Landlord-Tenant issues. 118 Locust Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, 17101, call (717) 236-9486.
Government and public aid is available from the Bucks County Health and Human Services department. This is the group that can help the less fortunate, seniors, and low income obtain federal and state government benefits. Some programs include funds for paying heating bills and TANF. They also work closely with the Bucks County Agency on Aging to help seniors. Other public programs include SNAP food stamps, Medicaid and information on prescription assistance and other benefits. Click Bucks County public assistance.
Rescue Relief For Senior Citizens – The elderly, older adults, and senior citizens can all receive help. Offers financial assistance with everyday necessities to seniors, provides advocacy to help negotiate payments on overdue bills, and the non-profit connects seniors with information and resources to meet other needs such as clothing, debt reduction, Food Assistance, prescription medications, and utility bills. Call (215) 426-1977, or read more on debt assistance programs.
Bucks County programs and agencies that are offered to all state residents
Below is information on various programs and agencies that provide foreclosure counseling, utility help, food and other assistance to all of Philadelphia, Doylestown and Pennsylvania.
· Pennsylvania free food banks.
· Free dental care centers in Pennsylvania.
Financial assistance from Bucks County Opportunity Council, Inc.
This is the local community action agency, and they offer numerous assistance programs to Doylestown and Bucks County residents, including the following.
· Emergency assistance - Funds may be able to help pay rent, utility bills, health care costs, and more.
· Tax preparation - Professionally trained and certified volunteers will prepare and e-file your Pennsylvania and federal government tax return.
· Food - Pick up free groceries or food at a nearby pantry.
· Outreach and Emergency Stabilization are for income qualified families striving towards self-sufficiency. Eligible participants may receive loans or other support may be available for addressing critical needs, such as rent payment to stop an eviction.
· Various self-sufficiency resources are offered in Bucks County. As part of this there may be information on job training, budgeting, or free income tax preparation.
· Government benefits such as Emergency Food Assistance Program, weatherization for saving money on utility bills, and LIHEAP applications are offered by BCOC.
Those are just a sampling of the programs offered. Call Bucks County Opportunity Council, Inc. at (215) 345-8175 for more information and an extensive list. If the non-profit can’t assist, they may have referrals to who can. More on resources from Bucks County Opportunity Council.
Families and individuals with a very limited or no income can turn to a local food cupboard for food assistance help. Call First Call for Help, Bucks County at 215.949.1660 to learn more.
Other food pantries in Bucks County and the Doylestown area include Aiding Our Neighbors (Holland 215-968-6208), Heaven's Bounty Food Cupboard (215-536-1317), Quakertown Food Pantry (phone 215-536-0240). Click here for more food banks, pantries, and thrift stores in the region.
Health care in Bucks County Pennsylvania
Philadelphia Health Care Centers and Medical Clinics provide many health care services including pharmaceutical and dental provisions. Dial the Health District #1 at 215.685.6570 to find out about a health care clinic in your area. Find additional health care programs. Continue.
CHIP Program - This program focuses on children, and it provides free health care, dental and mental health services for children, ages 0 to 19, who are not eligible for medical assistance. To apply for the free health care, contact: AETNA/US Healthcare: 1.800.822.2447 or Blue Cross/Blue Shield: 1.800.464.5437
Patient Assistance/Prescription Plans is offered by Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association of America. Call them at 1.800.762.4636. This group offers a free copy of patient prescription assistance directory. Physician may be required to call. The directories give information on free medications.
Veterans Administration - Phone number is 1.800.827.1000. Veterans must register and have DD214. Prescriptions are available for a $2 co-pay with medical care.
Health Link Medical Center - Provides primary medical and dental care to low income individuals and families without health insurance. Southampton Pennsylvania. 215-364-4247
PACE/PACENET - This Pennsylvania state government program, which can be reached at 1.800.225.7233/1.800.225.7223, provides free prescription drug and patient assistance to individuals who are aged 65 and older.
Free legal aid in Bucks County – Assistance for housing issues (such as foreclosure or eviction assistance) is available as well as help in applying for government entitlement programs, such as SSI. Lawyers can also help seniors, the disabled, and qualified low income families by offering a diverse set of programs to them.
Bucks County Dental Program - Offers free dental care to children who live in Bucks County who have no health or dental insurance. There are income eligibility requirements to apply.
Phoenixville Area Dental Network - Contact information is 1.877.765.0477. This group provides free dental care to uninsured children who reside in the service area of Phoenixville Hospital. There are income criteria in order to apply.
Kids Smiles, which is located at 2821 Island Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and phone number of (215.492.9291) is a non-profit dental provider that gives free dental care for children covered by Medical Assistance or CHIP, as well as uninsured children whose families meet income criteria. Uninsured patients are charged $20 for a visit.
Volunteer Doctors Care - Volunteer doctors, medical professionals, nurse practitioners, nurses and support staff work together to provide low cost or free primary health care to patients at the community clinic. Uninsured adults over 18 years of age who live in Upper Bucks County Pennsylvania and are low income may receive free medical care if they are eligible. Quakertown. Call 215-538-4774
Several other locations operate in the area. Find more Bucks County community clinics.
The Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority, located at 1234 Market Street Philadelphia, PA 19107, and phone number of 215.854.6515 provides low interest “Action Loans”, which are loans that are below-market rate home improvement loans, that are to be used for home improvements.
Mortgage assistance and foreclosure help
If you have experienced a hardship and are facing a home foreclosure, you can get federal assistance or help from the State of Pennsylvania to pay your mortgage for up to three years. For more information on your options, contact the following programs:
· Housing Finance Agency (Act 91) - 1.800.342.2397
· Philadelphia Council for Community Advancement- 100 N. 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 215.567.7803
· Housing Association of the Delaware Valley Information Program - 215.978.0224
In addition to the resources indicated above, other resources and options are available if you need details on Pennsylvania mortgage assistance options.
Families or individuals who need rent help, or may need funds to pay a security deposit, or people who have been served an eviction notice can get help from the following agencies and charities.
· Tenant Action Group - 215.575.0700 , 21 S. 12th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107
· Diversified Community Services 215.336.3511, 1920 S. 20th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19145
· South Lehigh Action Council 215.229.2801, 2213 W. Sergeant Street, Philadelphia, PA 19132
· New Kensington CDC, 215.427.0350, 2513 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19125
· Southwest CDC, 215.729.0800, 6400 Woodland Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19142
Free legal services and advice
· Montgomery County Legal Services - 610.275.5400
· Community Legal Services - 215.981.3700
· Philadelphia Bar Association Lawyer Referral & Information Services - 215.238.6333
· Temple University Legal Aid Office - 215.204.1800 , 1719 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19122
· Women's Law Project - 215.928.9801, 125 S. 9th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107
· Delaware County Legal Assistance Association - 610.874.2171
· Find more on Pennsylvania legal programs.
The Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service & Education Center, Inc. - This organization provides training services and employment including job search and placement, as well as referral services to other local and government assistance programs including emergency food/shelter, drug/alcohol rehabilitation, disability compensation and other benefits. Phone number 215.923.2600
Veterans Upward Bound Program - 215.898.6892. This program provides academic instruction, computer literacy, tutoring, education/career guidance. All services are offered free to veterans and former military personnel.
A federal funded program that installs free energy conserving upgrades to homes. Contact Bucks County Opportunity Council at 1282 Almshouse Road, Doylestown, PA 18901 or dial 215.345.8175.