09 January 2017

Emergency Assistance programs help low-income individuals and families with four critical areas of need: housing, seasonal assistance, food pantry and utility assistance. Utility assistance works to prevent utility shut-offs and / or facilitates the resumption of services in a timely manner.

The Salvation Army’s Utility Assistance Program provides a lifeline for households who have fallen behind on their utility payments. A utility shut-off notice is serious in and of itself. However, it could be a symptom of other underlying challenges such as unemployment, a medical crisis or impending homelessness due to insufficient financial resources. Contrary to the typical band-aid approach of simply catching-up delinquent accounts, The Salvation Army uses short-term case management to confront the underlying conditions which created the original need.

Last year alone, approximately 12,500 households in our West Michigan/Northern Indiana area received emergency utility assistance in order to prevent shut-offs or to establish essential services. For more information regarding The Salvation Army Utility Assistance Program, please visit: http://sawmni.org/wmni/energy-assistance

In her own words, listen to how The Salvation Army became Kelsey’s “side to lean on” in a utility emergency: