Affording the necessities of everyday life can sometimes be more difficult for seniors, especially those that are retired and are on a tight budget. The good news is that the Memphis area has several community resources that are ready to provide older adults with financial assistance to help cover the costs of life’s expenses. Organizations that will help with the cost of groceries, affordable housing, heating and utility bills, transportation, social activities and more are included in this handy guide.
Several programs are available for Memphis-area seniors to provide them with needed food and groceries. The Department of Human Services (DHS) for the state of Tennessee administers the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) that provides benefits to low-income individuals and families. Seniors that may be on a limited budget can apply for the SNAP program to help them pay for needed food to avoid hunger and stay healthy.
A group of dedicated volunteers helps MIFA Meals on Wheels to provide Memphis-area seniors that are at least 60 years of age or older with a daily lunch on weekdays to help meet their nutritional needs. The Memphis area is also home to several food pantries and a soup kitchen. The Mid-South Food Bank in Memphis has a Senior Nutrition Program that provides older adults with a selection of shelf-stable groceries that helps to supplement their nutritional needs.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has a variety of resources that Memphis seniors may want to explore to learn about their options for affordable housing. HUD’s “affordable apartment search” tool will help you locate rentals for the Memphis area. The listings include the name of each complex along with contact info and the number of bedrooms per unit.
Help to cover the high costs of utilities is available through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance (LIHEAP) program administered by the Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA). Benefits are available for individuals that fall within the 150% federal poverty guideline levels. Funding provides seniors with financial support to help them pay their bills each month.
The Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) administers the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) that is federally funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. Seniors can benefit financially and cut utility and fuel costs by using the benefits to make their homes more energy efficient and less costly to heat.
There are several programs for Memphis seniors that provide daily living activities and the opportunity to socialize with other older adults. The Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association (MIFA) administers a Senior Companion program that helps enhance the quality of life for seniors that may be homebound, ill, or disabled.
The Aging Commission of the Mid-South works closely with several senior centers in the Memphis area to provide older adults with access to community services such as congregate meals, outreach programs, and transportation.
The City of Memphis government works with the community toward the goal of providing adults that are at least 55 years of age with access to a full range of programs and services. A listing of senior centers in the Memphis area is posted on their website. Activities include educational and wellness programs as well as leisure activities that enable seniors to enjoy a higher quality of daily life.
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