How to help neighbors in need
● By Steven Hoffman
In the June 27 issue of the Chester County Press, we published a story about the affordable housing crisis in Chester County. While there is a need for “affordable housing” at a variety of price points, the most critical need is certainly for those residents who are looking for—and can only afford—the least expensive options that are available. Despite southern Chester County’s comparative wealth, there are still many people and families in the area who are struggling to maintain their housing.
Organizations like Kennett Area Community Service or the Oxford Area Neighborhood Services Center are seeing many more people who are facing homelessness, and these are the people who need the help the most. In the 2016-2017 school year, 394 students were impacted by homelessness. The elderly and the disabled are also particularly vulnerable in the current climate where affordable housing options are scarce.
If you can help your neighbors in need, here’s a few ways to do so:
Make a contribution to the Kennett Area Community Service (KACS). Donations can be made to the Kennett Food Cupboard or the KACS Emergency Assistance Programs. These programs include case management, referral services and financial assistance for rent, utilities, and other needs. The KACS staff can also help people resolve their housing situation through homelessness prevention efforts and rapid re-housing services.
Donations can be made to:
Kennett Area Community Service
136 W. Cedar St., Kennett Square, Pa. 19348
P.O. Box 1025, Kennett Square, PA 19348
More information about KACS and the services that it provides can be obtained by calling 610-925-3556 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Oxford Area Neighborhood Services Center provides many of the same services as KACS, and is also a valuable resource for people to turn during a time of need. Contributions can be sent to the Oxford Area Neighborhood Services Center, 35 N. 3rd St., Oxford, Pa. 19363. The email address is email@example.com and the telephone number is 610-932-8557.
Another local organization that helps, specifically, families who are facing homelessness, is the Family Promise of Southern Chester County. More information about making a contribution to Family Promise of Southern Chester County is available at www.familypromisescc.org.
Another good way to provide help to those who need it most is to make a donation to the United Way of Southern Chester County at 106 West State St. Kennett Square, Pa. 19348 or make the donation online at www.unitedwayscc.org. That one donation will allow the United Way of Southern Chester County to support dozens of local nonprofit organizations that serve the community.