Department of Social Services Cooling Assistance Program accepting applications


The Department of Social Services has begun accepting applications for its cooling assistance program.

“An app came up on my phone, letting me know it was time for the cooling program and that it was going to be here, because I was on my way to social services,” says Roanoke resident, Nellie Battle.

Battle has received cooling assistance for the past several years. But this year, she was able to save some time, by applying in her very own neighborhood.

“This is closer to my house, and I feel more comfortable because this is my neighborhood library where I come all the time. So I feel good, and it went real quick,” says Battle.

This is the first year the Department of Social Services in Roanoke has gone to locations throughout the community to accept applications for the program.

“We wanted to meet people where they’re at and stop creating so many barriers with transportation and the other things people face just to apply for the assistance they need,” says Jennifer Hayward, senior client services specialist.

The program provides help with electric bills or air conditioning units for people who meet certain requirements. For example, to qualify, there must be a vulnerable person in the houshold, such as a young child, an elderly person, or like Battle, someone with a disability.

“I couldn’t stand any longer and then my arms gave out from carpal tunnel and fibromyalgia,” says Battle.

The Department of Social Services will be in more locations in the Roanoke area for the remainder of the week.

Monday, June 17West Creek Apartments – 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.Ashton Heights Apartments – 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the office conference roomWilliamson Roanoke Branch Library Fun Event: Caricature – 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.West Side Apartments – 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, June 18Fallon Park – 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.Gainsboro Branch Library Fun Event: Summer Kids Crafts – 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Wednesday, June 19Horton Park – 8 a.m. To 12 p.m.Raleigh Court Branch Library Fun Event: Refreshments – 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.Gainsboro Branch Library Fun Event: Afternoon Family Movies – 2 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, June 20Washington Park – 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.Gainsboro Branch Library Fun Event: Lego Time – 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

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