Resources Are Available When You Need Them - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Resources Are Available When You Need Them

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Jen Jackson
Channel 2 News

As more people get laid off and lose health benefits, the need for help grows in our community, but do you know where to turn when it's time to put food on the table or see a doctor?

Care Chest has been in our community for 20 years and as time goes by, the need for aid grows.

Wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, diabetic supplies, even paying for emergency medicine--Care Chest helps the community get all those.

"A lot of families are coming to us that never expected to," says Care Chest Executive Director Patti Meals.

A few state grants pay the bills at Care Chest, but it's mostly private funding that keeps the doors open.

Almost 10,000 people used Care Chest last year and the agency expects that to go up 20 to 30-percent.

"If you have a child that has diabetes and you need to pay for test strips on a regular basis, [you know] how expensive that is. You're choosing between food and test strips. What, as a parent are you going to do?" adds Meals.

The Food Bank of Northern Nevada is feeding more people than ever before. While holiday food drive donations won't last through the spring, that's not stopping them.

Jocelyn Lantrip of the Northern Nevada Food Bank says,  "As we may see increases in the future, there's a few things we do constantly to try to keep up with that demand."

It has a Food Stamp Outreach Program that sends Food Bank employees out into the community and helps people sign up for food stamps, and the Mobile Food Pantry takes food to the people who need it.

Volunteers are key in feeding your friends and neighbors, making sure the donations get sorted.

"More people are going to be unemployed, more employers are going to be dropping the benefits. So, where is a patient to turn to? They need to come to HAWC," says Linda Costa of the HAWC Clinic.

Health Access Washoe County isn't free, but everyone can get medical and dental care, using a sliding pay scale.

Costa adds, "You don't want to put off getting a physical or getting your teeth cleaned. You want to keep that up. In the long run, it's going to cost you a lot more if you don't maintain that."

The agencies say, if you need help or have questions, just give them a call.

Care Chest: 829-CARE.

Food Bank of Northern Nevada: 331-3663

HAWC Clinic: 329- 6300.

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