Programs and Services
A record number of people in need were assisted through a variety of programs that have been established by the Coalition since 1981. As Frederick County has grown since 1981, the needs of the community have also changed and grown. Frederick City is now a bustling metropolis. Throughout the county, there are increases in the number of people facing difficult problems. Many cannot even afford the most basic human needs such as food, housing, medicine, health and dental care. The Religious Coalition has been reaching out and helping our neighbors, who are in need.
For Those Who are Hungry
Through a network of 8 affiliated food banks located in Frederick, Brunswick, Jefferson, Middletown, Thurmont, Emmitsburg, Walkersville and Knoxville, the Religious Coalition provides emergency food assistance.
For Those in Danger of Losing Their Homes
Since 2000, the need for rental assistance has increased 150%. In 2007, almost 450 households were helped to avoid evictions or foreclosures through financial assistance from the Religious Coalition. Working with local government and other agencies, a system has been established to help prevent evictions. Families are helped with budget counseling to prevent future problems.
For Those Needing Help with Utility Bills
The Religious Coalition’s Energy Assistance Fund saw a 300% increase in families needing help paying their utility bills from 2005 to 2007. Clients work with the Frederick County Department of Social Services and the Religious Coalition to receive aid. As utility rates rise, more people will need financial assistance.
For Those Needing Health Care, Dental Care and Prescription Medications
More than 3,000 individuals and families needing health care, dental care and prescription medications were aided by the Religious Coalition in 2007. When people cannot afford medical care or medications, their conditions worsen and additional medical care is required. Many families are forced to choose between feeding the whole family and buying medicine for one person. The Coalition also makes referrals to other agencies and services. Vouchers are supplied for care arranged through a network of providers such as physicians, dentists and pharmacists.
For Those Who are Homeless
Alan P. Linton, Jr. Emergency Shelter
The Religious Coalition operates 3 programs for the homeless in the Alan P. Linton Jr. Emergency Shelter: the Cold Weather Shelter, open from November through March, The Day Shelter, open from November through March, and Exodus Project, open from April through October. This is the largest and only year round shelter in Frederick. It is a modern, clean, safe environment that houses 80 people. Professional staff is on site to help clients and a large number of volunteers are available during shelter hours.
The Cold Weather Shelter
From November through March, the shelter provides a warm, safe haven for homeless men and women. The Religious Coalition began a cold weather shelter in 1990. Beds were provided in local churches and housed about 20 people. Close to 300 were served in 2007. A major fund raising campaign enabled the Coalition to purchase a site and construct the Alan P. Linton, Jr. Emergency Shelter in 2002.
The Day Shelter
The Day Shelter provides refuge from the cold for vulnerable clients with physical and mental problems and the frail elderly. It is housed in the Cold Weather Shelter, November through March. The Coalition trains volunteers and supervises the Day Shelter.
Exodus Project is a comprehensive 90 day program that provides shelter, case management and supportive services designed to lead people out of homelessness and into independence. It is housed in the Shelter, April to October. This program helps individuals determined to break the cycle of homelessness. It preserves their dignity and well being while increasing their self-sufficiency.