Grace Center offers ‘pop up’ clinic for utility, rent assistance

Submitted content

The Grace Center of Southern Oklahoma, a nonprofit homeless prevention agency, will return to Healdton from 1 - 3 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 24 at Mercy Healdton Community Room to assist western Carter County residents with the application process for relief on their rent and utility bills. 

The clinic is part of the Grace Center’s effort to reduce the transportation barrier that many western Carter County residents face when attempting to access social services in Ardmore. In June, the Grace Center offered the clinic at Mercy Healdton in which five households applied. 

“The Grace Center of Southern Oklahoma is thrilled to return to Healdton for our second ‘pop up’ clinic,” said Laura Eastes Akers, executive director of the Grace Center of Southern Oklahoma. “Our team hears from our western Carter County neighbors in need who say traveling to Ardmore to complete an application and attend a financial literacy class is a barrier. We don’t want transportation to be why a family is going without basic needs such as utilities. Nor do we want to hear about families putting their housing in jeopardy because they can’t access a financial assistance program.”

Grace Center staff will be available to conduct the application with households. Following the application process, all households will attend a money management lesson taught by Connie Applegate, the center’s education coordinator. Households will need to bring a government ID, a copy of their lease agreement (if applying for rental assistance), a cutoff notice of a utility (if applying for utility assistance), and income verification. No social security cards are required. Any resident of Carter, Love, Johnston, Marshall, or Murray counties may apply. 

“Without the partnership of Mercy Hospital Healdton, this event wouldn’t be possible,” said Akers. “The hospital leadership is committed to increasing collaboration between the hospital and Ardmore-based social service agencies because it ultimately benefits the patients. The event on Aug. 24 is about addressing social determinants of health with the help of community partners to build a healthier community.”

To learn more about the clinic, call the Grace Center at 580-223-2027.