JFSA Emergency Assistance Story

A woman in her 70’s came to the agency after losing her husband, unexpectedly. She was grieving and her sole income was gone. We started working with her through emergency services providing bereavement counseling, food and utility assistance, ensuring she did not go hungry or lose her shelter. We began working with social security and welfare to get her husband’s SS income coming to her and SNAP (food stamps) food benefits. As this process was underway, we learned her son age 41, moved in with his mother while she was grieving, to help her day to day. He was having some health issues that were keeping him from working, but was not comfortable reaching out to our agency for some guidance.  We reached out to him and was able to get him to come to the agency. After some case management we started seeing him for counseling, due to a previous diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia, of which he was medicated for.  We felt that we needed to get him into a doctor for a second opinion. Since he had no insurance we contacted a partnering medical center to hopefully get this client some answers.  After about 6 months of working with him, he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, and had been misdiagnosed and medicated.  While finally getting his mother her social security, which was enough to cover her necessary expenses, we continued to give her pantry services and finally got her approved for SNAP benefits.  We worked to get him disability and Medicaid as he would not be able to work ever again.  We are still providing many supportive services to these clients, as his health declines daily. Although the emergency services department has worked on majority of the issues regarding these clients, JFSA has been fortunate to be able to provide many wrap around services to these clients, simplifying the confusion for them.  They are so grateful for all the services we have provided them and often say they do not know what they would have done without the assistance of JFSA. 


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