The regional Community Action Agency can help low income and working poor families who are struggling with poverty in Kendall and Grundy County. Short term aid is assistance that you need right away and long term support is help that you will need over time. The agency provides both types of assistance.
The agency provides people with access to needed resources through a comprehensive information network. If someone is struggling and needs help, a case manager may give them referrals to local charities or government benefits that can help them out.
Community Action provides three services to help with energy costs: paying for household energy, heating bills, and cooling bills. The main components of resources are air, water, and land. The types of resources are renewable and nonrenewable.
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps low-income households with energy costs. The Winter Crisis Program provides assistance to eligible households in the form of a one-time cash grant to help pay winter utility bills, as well as a summer crisis program that helps pay for summer utility bills. If a family does not have access to an energy source, they may be able to get financial help from Kendall-Grundy Community Action. Lastly, the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program provides emergency financial assistance to qualified households who are at risk of having their utilities disconnected.
The state of Illinois reconnection assistance program is a one time solution for households that have been disconnected from their utility services due to non-payment. If you’re struggling to pay your power bill, there may be some financial assistance available to help you cover the cost.
The emergency furnace program is a service that provides temporary heating assistance to eligible low-income households. If you live in Grundy or Kendall County and are struggling to pay your bills, this program will help pay for a furnace tune up, repair, or replacement. This is not very widely available.
The summer cooling bill program is administered by the state of Illinois and is only available if the state has the necessary funding. Households with children under five years of age, persons 60 years of age or older, and individuals with a disability or a serious medical condition that require a cool living environment may be eligible for financial assistance under this program.
The Community Action Agency also manages the Illinois Home Weatherization Assistance program, which helps low-income families make their homes more energy-efficient. This can help residents save money on their utilities by using less fuel and making their homes more comfortable.
The staff will help low income families who qualify by assessing the condition of their homes. They will examine how energy is being used and identify ways to reduce consumption. The improvements done on the home as part of weatherization may include sealing cracks and gaps with weatherproofing materials, repairing windows, or adding insulation to attics and walls.
The IHWAP also requires that experienced heating contractors examine a home’s heating system for safety and proper functioning. Specialists who are approved by Kendall-Grundy Community Action may repair furnaces, clean them, and tune them up. In some cases, the furnace may need to be replaced.
Kendall-Grundy Community Action Agency helps people get cars for work through its Drive to Success program. This is not always available as it depends on a partnership between Community Action, local businesses and private donors.
According to studies, not having affordable transportation is one of the most common reasons why people can’t find or keep a job. If you enroll in the program and are employed continuously for 12 months, you will be able to sign over a car title after making small monthly payments for a year.
Drive to Success provides clients with financial assistance to pay for car repairs from volunteer mechanics. In order to receive financial assistance for an automobile, participants must complete an application and provide proof of insurance, the car registration, show employment, a valid driver’s license and provide two repair estimates. Applicants also must rely on the vehicle as their only means of transportation to work.
Small businesses can take out loans through the non-profit’s micro-loan program. This resource is designed to help people start or grow a small business in Kendall or nearby counties. A small business is any business that is owned and operated by one person or a small group of people. Community Action Agencies typically provide loans to small businesses that are used to start or expand a business.
The Agency offers scholarships to help children and adults with low incomes to continue their education. This means that the scholarships can be used to pay for things like books, tuition, school supplies, and a place to live while you are attending school. The organization giving the award will send the money directly to the financial aid office of the college or university the student is attending. The money can then be used by the student as needed.
To be eligible for a scholarship, you must live in either Grundy or Kendall County and come from a household that meets the income requirements. To be eligible for this award, applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent, or have graduated from an accredited high school or institution that offers the GED. In order to qualify for this benefit, candidates must be accepted into an approved occupational training program, college or university in Illinois, and demonstrate other forms of self-sufficiency. This may include needing to show commitment to civic and public affairs, and displaying long term goals and purpose.
Find help from Kendall and Grundy County Community Action Agency
The main office is located at 811 West John Street, Yorkville, Illinois 60560. For more information, please call (630) 553-9100.