Emergency Basic Needs Program
For information on the 2016 Back to School Project, please click on the links below:
Appointment Line: 281-583-5600
If you are in need of assistance, the first step is to call the appointment line at 281-583-5600 to schedule an appointment for an interview. An interview is essential to determine your family’s needs and which resources can best address those needs. Having an appointment will not guarantee qualification for financial assistance. Applicants must have had an emergency or loss of income within the preceding 45 days.
The appointment line is open from 9 a.m. to Noon and 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. The line will be open during these times unless all available appointments have been filled. Appointments are scheduled for the next day. Extended hours are available on Tuesday evenings from 5 to 7 p.m.
The Assistance Program accepts clients living in the following 17 zip code areas: 77014, 77032, 77038, 77050, 77060, 77064, 77066, 77067, 77068, 77069, 77070, 77073, 77086, 77090, 77379, 77388 and 77389.
If someone does not reside within those ZIP codes, NAM staff members refer the individual to the neighboring agency that serves the area where he or she resides.
About the Emergency Basic Needs program
People often have a wide range of needs when they come to NAM for help. NAM’s Emergency Basic Needs program offers trained volunteer interviewers who assess clients’ needs and match them with services available at NAM as well as other organizations in the Houston area.
The Emergency Basic Needs Program offers a variety of emergency services including food, prescriptions (non-narcotic), gasoline vouchers, bus tokens, clothing, financial help with rent/mortgage, school supplies, and holiday food and toys. NAM’s Assistance Program does not help with utility bills. (Please call the United Way Help Line at 211 for assistance with your electric bill.)
A satellite office of Harris County Social Services is also located at NAM for the convenience of NAM’s clients. You will need to contact HCSS at 713-696-7900 to schedule an appointment. In addition, a Community Outreach Specialist is housed in the Assistance Office one day per week and accepts appointments for S.N.A.P benefits. To schedule an appointment, you can call (281) 885-4555 extension 3345.
The SNAP representative takes walk-in only on Tuesday and Thursday.
Emergency Basic Needs served 31,444 people last year. The Back to School Project provided 1,485 children with school supplies, equipping them to begin the school year ready to learn. The 2014 Holiday Project provided 2,005 children with holiday toys.
One day, a smiling woman, by the name of Martha came to drop off a large donation of groceries to the Joanne Watford Nutrition Center. She explained, with tears in her eyes, that several months ago her husband had left her and her 3 children. She said she was on the verge of becoming homeless. She sought help from NAM and was able to receive assistance to help with her rent and utilities. Now she has a job and feels secure again. She said that she wanted to repay the kindness that was shown her when she was in need. She used some of her paycheck to buy groceries for the Joanne Watford Nutrition Center so that others could be blessed the way she felt she had been blessed by NAM.
Billy came in to the Assistance Office with his mother to ask for emergency food. A referral was provided and Billy and his mom were directed to the Joanne Watford Nutrition Center where they could pick up their food. When his mother picked up the food, she asked if there was a cake available because it was Billy’s birthday and she wanted him to have a cake to celebrate. By chance, there was a birthday cake decorated for a boy which had just come in as a donation from one of the local grocery stores. The volunteers all wished Billy a very happy birthday and asked how old he was. Billy was too shy to tell them. When asked if he would tell if there was a present for him, he immediately blurted out “TEN!” It just so happened that there was a huge toy truck left over from the Christmas toy drive. When Billy saw that truck his eyes lit up as if he was just given a million dollars.