We know these are difficult days and there are a lot of unknowns. We hope to lessen your stress by providing some important resources and information if you are experiencing financial hardship.
We have a team who would also love to pray for you. Please send prayer requests to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are few things you can do to help get a better grasp on your financial situation:
- Consider taking one of the many free online financial classes to better understand budgeting and how to help your finances.
- Download the free app: Every Dollar to develop a budget.
- Review and clarify your income sources to determine what reality might look like in the coming weeks.
- Cut spending to bare necessities.
- If you can’t pay all of your bills, Dave Ramsey recommends spending your money on these four items, in this order:
- Establish a game plan and gather all information needed.
- Identify payments that could be deferred if you’re unable to cover all of your expenses.
- Call creditors to explain your situation and request temporary relief on your monthly payments.
- Consider offering to send a portion of your typical payment to show your willingness to work with them, and they may be more willing to work with you.
- If you have federal student loans, you can forbear (interest accrues) or defer (interest doesn’t accrue on subsidized federal loans) your loan payments.
- Reach out to the ReStart Career Development Community at email@example.com for career tips and guidance. If you have questions and want to find out more, visit restartsc.org.
National Relief Efforts
- Private Mortgage Relief Programs: In addition to federal- and state-specific efforts, banks are offering relief to mortgage customers affected by coronavirus. Contact your mortgage lender if you need relief.
- Free COVID-19 testing: free testing is available to anyone.
- Emergency paid leave: paid leave is available for up to three months if you are sick, quarantined, or taking care of a sick family member. The rate would be 2/3 of your normal salary and doesn’t apply if you receive unemployment compensation (employers with fewer than 500 employees).
- Paid sick leave: paid sick leave is available for two weeks (employers with fewer than 500 employees).
- Credit Relief: Many banks have stated that if customers are having trouble making payments on loans (e.g., mortgages, credit cards, personal loans, auto loans, etc.) to call them to determine available options.
- Many utilities companies suspended disconnections and collections for 30 days. Reach out to your utility companies to determine available options.
- Some companies will not disconnect or add late fees for customers who contact the company directly.
- Take advantage of public Wi-Fi hotspots such as the library and check with your carrier to see if they are offering essential data for free.
- To file for unemployment in South Carolina, visit scuihub.dew.sc.gov/CSS.
- For those who may not qualify for traditional unemployment like freelancers, visit the FEMA website for more information.
Employment and Education Programs
- Finding employment with better compensation: https://jobs.scworks.org/vosnet/Default.aspx
- Trident Technical College currently has Workforce Scholarships that cover tuition and fees for South Carolina residents enrolled in a high-demand field such as: Technical Trades, Business, Information Technology, Education, and more.
- Goodwill Industries offers apprentice programs and free options for online classes that could help career advancement.
Charleston County Rental Assistance Program
- The application for Charleston County’s Emergency Rental Assistance.
- For assistance with applications call: 1-855-452-5374 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, formerly known as Food Stamp benefits.
- Apply for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits, formerly known as Family Independence. This is South Carolina’s welfare program. Apply online, visit: acf.hhs.gov.
Housing Crisis Hotline
- If you are experiencing homelessness or have received an eviction notice call: 843-737-8357 or visit: https://lowcountrycoc.org/get-help.
- Neighbors Together offers services including medical care, job training, food pantry, hygiene products, legal services, clothing, rental assistance, and more. For more information, contact: 843-747-1788 or visit https://neighborstogethersc.org/services/.
The Navigation Center
- If you are experiencing or at-risk of homelessness, The Navigation Center can help connect individuals, families, and veterans with case management, employment support, and understanding resources that may be available. They also offer laundry stations, and nightly dinners to their clients. For more information, visit: www.thenavigationcenter.org.
- Programs include but are not limited to the following: housing support, financial literacy classes, free tax preparation, and One-on-One budgeting. For more information, call 843.724.6760 or visit www.palmettocap.org.
- SC Thrive offers helps navigating and applying for resources such as: rental assistance, free tax filling, healthcare, financial classes, credit counseling, SNAP, Medicaid, tax credits, and more.
- To apply for benefits, call: 1-800-726-8774 or visit SC Thrive.
Trident United Way Of South Carolina
- This website has links to local resources such as rental assistance, benefit counseling, utility assistance, food, and more. Visit: www.tuw.org/find-resources or call 211 24hrs a day to be connected to additional resources in your area.