Our Community Programs provide opportunities for individuals and families to benefit from social and energy conservation services. Our Social Services enable individuals and families to access and use community, immigration, and housing services. Also, our Energy Conservation Services enable low and moderate-income households to access heating and cooling services, and improve energy efficiency.
Multi-Service Center (MSC)
Middlesex County residents receive advocacy and info/orientation on supportive services and entitlement programs, assistance with healthcare info and access, and housing education assistance and referrals. They also may secure food from our pantry.
MSC helps individuals and families access and use community resources
Low and moderate-income Middlesex County residents meet with MSC Representatives in English and Spanish to assess their unique needs and the best ways to address those needs. They review information about community supportive services, entitlement programs, access to healthcare, housing education, child support, court motions, etc. They also participate in educational activities or counseling sessions to secure appropriate community resources. Some resources are provided in-house by PRAB programs, partnering organizations, and other community service providers; others come through referrals to other external providers.
Participants also may access a food pantry on a first come, first serve basis. Through MSC’s Our Children Project, women may participate in an informal self-help group for women.
Outreach helps individuals and families learn about community resources
Low and moderate-income Middlesex County residents receive information on community resources from an Outreach Representative. Resources include PRAB services and those of other relevant community service providers. Outreach locations include municipal offices, libraries, senior centers, adult day care centers, community & health fairs, and public events. Outreach sessions are available in English and/or Spanish.
MSC/Outreach increases accessibility to needed community resources
MSC and Outreach Representatives meet with other community agencies and service providers to learn about their services, and establish an appropriate referral system for use by participating individuals and families. They maintain a comprehensive inventory of community services, and regularly add to the existing linkages and referrals. In turn, individuals and families may access more community resources via educational activities or counseling sessions both at PRAB’s Service Access Center and at the providers’ own program spaces.
To receive SAC/Outreach Services you must:
- Reside in Middlesex County (and other parts of Central New Jersey)
- Visit our headquarters at 90 Jersey Avenue
- Register at the Welcome desk and then be served by an available representative
- (off-site) Attend an Outreach event/intake session to obtain PRAB resources, and apply directly for some PRAB services
For community agencies and service providers to partner with SAC/Outreach, you must:
- Contact the Multi-Service Center/Outreach Manager to provide info on your services
- Schedule a date or dates to offer your resources on-site at the Service Access Center
Housing Coalition of Central Jersey (HCCJ)
Middlesex County residents receive housing services to ensure they maintain safe, affordable residences, including homebuyer education & counseling, fair housing counseling, mortgage assistance, foreclosure mediation, mortgage counseling, and homelessness prevention. HCCJ is a HUD-certified housing counseling program.
Housing Coalition increases first-time homeownership
Low–and moderate–income households receive counseling on becoming first-time homebuyers, partnering with local lenders who help them save toward a down payment and closing costs; and on the American Dream Down Payment Initiative (ADDI) program to assist them in purchasing homes in 23 Middlesex County municipalities.
Housing Coalition prevents foreclosures
Homeowners faced with mortgage delinquency and default receive counseling to determine the reasons for delinquency, and explore options to avoid foreclosure, including mortgage modification, mortgage assistance, and asset preservation.
Housing Coalition helps resolve landlord-tenant disputes
Landlords and tenants receive information on their rights and responsibilities, and tenants who are summoned to court receive assistance with state, county, or local intervention.
Housing Coalition helps end tenant housing discrimination
Victims of housing discrimination receive support in complaint investigation, advocacy (when appropriate), case preparation, and filing with the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), New Jersey Division of Civil Rights, or with private attorneys.
Housing Coalition secures stable tenant residences
Individuals and families who are homeless, housed in substandard conditions, or are at risk of losing their housing through eviction or foreclosure receive assistance in considering options, completing applications for subsidized housing, and locating financial resources for rent, security, and utility deposits.
To receive Housing Coalition services, you must:
For First Time Homebuyer
- Have purchased your home in Middlesex County or certain areas of Somerset County
For the American Dream Down Payment Initiative (ADDI) Grant
- Be a first-time homebuyer, and an existing Middlesex County resident for at least one year
- Complete an in-person, group homebuyer training course offered by a HUD approved housing counseling agency (The class must be completed prior to the closing)
- Purchase a single family property only
- Eligible properties are detached homes, townhouses, condos, and co-ops
- The purchase price cannot exceed four times the certified income level of the household, with an overall maximum of $295,000
- The property may be located in any Middlesex County municipality, except New Brunswick and Perth Amboy
- Have a mortgage pre-approval issued within the previous 2 months
- Be a New Jersey homeowner at risk of foreclosure through no fault of your own
- Own only one residential home (one, two, or three-units), and currently reside in that home
- Have suffered a qualifying involuntary financial hardship that caused or will cause you to fall behind on your mortgage payment
- Hardships that may qualify you for assistance include:
- An involuntary loss of employment income OR
- A reduction in household income due to underemployment or other demonstrated financial hardships, including medical, divorce, disability or death
For Foreclosure/Default Counseling
- Own only a home in Middlesex County or certain areas of Somerset County
For Landlord/Tenant Counseling
- Reside only in Middlesex County or certain areas of Somerset County
Home Energy Assistance Programs
Eligible Middlesex County households receive benefits toward lowering their energy costs, depending upon their energy burden, and based on their annual income.
Anna “Cuqui” Rivera
Home Energy Assistance Program
Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) / Universal Service Fund (USF)
LIHEAP/USF helps Middlesex County households with gas & electric utility bills
Eligible low income Middlesex County households receive a LIHEAP benefit toward lowering their heating and electric bills. Those who have a medical need may also receive a cooling assistance benefit toward during the summer months. Through USF, households may also receive monthly credits on gas or electric utility bills based upon their energy burden.
TO RECEIVE HEA/USF SERVICES, YOU MUST:
Submit the LIHEAP Application (between October 1 and August 31) or the USF Application (anytime throughout the year), and the required documents. Please view the income table below to see whether you are eligible to receive services.
- Via US Mail to 90 Jersey Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ 08901
- In person at our New Brunswick, Perth Amboy, or Carteret offices
- (off-site) Attend an outreach event or intake session, and provide documentation directly to our representative
HOW TO APPLY FOR HEA / USF ASSISTANCE:
Please download these instructions for information on how to apply. Please view the income table below to see whether you are eligible to receive services.
(Managed by our Multi Service Center/Outreach Team)
PAGE helps PSE&G customers with electric & natural gas bills
Those who are struggling to pay their utilities, and are over the low-income threshold for the LIHEAP/USF programs, may qualify for PAGE. The maximum Payment Assistance for Gas and Electric (PAGE) grant is $1,400 (depending on the balance owed).
To receive PAGE services, you must:To receive PAGE services, you must:
Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP)
Eligible Middlesex and Mercer County residents reduce their energy costs through the increased energy efficiency of their homes, while ensuring their health and safety. On average, annual energy costs after undergoing weatherization may be reduced by $437, according to the US Department of Energy.
Weatherization helps Middlesex County households reduce their energy costs
Eligible Middlesex County households are visited by our professionally trained crews, who use advanced diagnostic equipment to perform computerized energy audits on residential homes, as well as health and safety tests. In the process, they maximize and determine the most appropriate cost–effective, efficiency measures for the homes. Households ultimately alleviate their heavy energy burden, and experience savings toward becoming self-sufficient.
Weatherization provides appropriate cost-effective measures to Middlesex County households
Eligible Middlesex County households receive many of the following weatherization services, based on the specific assessments and health and safety tests conducted in the homes:
- Repair, caulk, and weather-strip windows and doors
- Wrap hot water tanks and pipes with insulation
- Stop drafts by sealing areas of air infiltration
- Install low flow showerheads and faucet aerators
- Clean, tune, and make minor repairs to heating systems
- Test heating units and appliances for combustion safety, carbon monoxide, and gas leaks
- Assess moisture damage, check electrical system safety
- Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
- Make major repairs or replace heating and cooling entire systems
- Insulate attics, walls, and floors
- Replace light bulbs with high efficient CFLs
- Provide instruction on simple techniques that may help save on household energy bills
TO RECEIVE WEATHERIZATION SERVICES, YOU MUST:
- Review and follow the Weatherization Assistance Program Information and the income eligibility chart below
- Submit the WAP Application and the required documents
- Via US Mail to 90 Jersey Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ 08901
- In person at our New Brunswick office (We accept walk-ins; no appointments needed)
Our Community Services Partners
Our Community Services count on the continued partnerships and collaborations with the community institutions below. We encourage you to visit their websites to learn about and access their programs and services, which include the following areas: Early Childhood, Youth, Family, Housing & Homelessness, Immigration, Community Service Access, Energy Conservation, Health & Nutrition, Education (PreK-12, Higher, etc.), Arts & Culture, Economic Development, and Community Development.
Bebé Bell infant & medical supplies and furniture referrals
Part of the Feeding NB Coalition of food pantries
Utilize their volunteer base
Coordinates 211 and county’s homeless response
We are community partners and attend meetings
Make referrals to the Clothesline Thrift Store; participate in open house events for their culinary school; participate in the Point in Time homeless count; and conduct outreach in community kitchen
Conduct outreach at their sites to promote LIHEAP
Outreach partners with them on PRAB services and LIHEAP
Collaborate on community events
Provide free educational materials for our programs; member of their Statewide Maternal Child Health Committee
Supply our food pantry; collaborate on the Feeding NB Coalition; and provide meeting space
Collaborate on hosting events and trainings; refer victims of sexual violence
Collaborate with the Ombudsman on child support orders, paternity motions, etc.
Collaborate on CICLOVIA and outreach
Collaborate with them on their annual October rally; provide information for our DV clients
Member agency and committee participant
Collaborate on events; provide outreach to their members; refer clients seeking employment services
Collaborate on school-based services, immigration, community-wide endeavors, and Central Jersey Job Developers; and collaborate on promoting healthy homes in New Brunswick
Utilize their volunteer base
Work closely with the LIHEAP Program; table at their sites during LIHEAP season; attend trainings
Collaborate with their breast cancer connection program
Collaborate on events and coalitions
Collaborate on trainings for the community, i.e., car seat safety; concussion prevention; etc.
Outreach to community
Collaborate on New Brunswick-wide coalition in support of immigrant residents
Host VITA program
Collaborate in many community events
Provides homeownership counseling and create affordable and sustainable homeownership opportunities for low-to-moderate income people
Contributes funds to our First Time Homebuyers Programs
Partnered to do in-service on all PRAB programs to staff; referrals for our DV clients
Utilize their members as volunteers in HEA