Emergency Assistance

Emergency Financial Assistance/Relief Societies:
Each branch of the Uniformed Services has a private organization which is considered the official charity of that branch, providing emergency relief to service members and retirees (and their families or widows), usually as an interest-free loan. Financial assistance may be provided when a qualifying individual cannot otherwise pay for specific basic needs essential to continued personal effectiveness as a military member - for emergency situations including emergency travel, vehicle payment/insurance/repair, food, shelter, utilities. Other financial situations may be approved for financial assistance - please ask! 

The military relief societies provide assistance through the Fairchild AFB A&FRC; all applicants will complete the Air Force Aid Society (AFAS) application, present ID card and other documentation if required. When the military sponsor is unable to apply, the family member will, ideally, have a Power of Attorney. Additionally, the Federal Employee Education and Assistance Fund provides assistance to federal civilians; the application process is handled by FEEA directly, although A&FRC staff will be glad to assist with completion of application.  

Appointment preferred - please call 509-247-2246. After hours emergencies are handled through the American Red Cross, by agreement with the military relief societies. Members
 should contact their First Sergeant to initiate this process for after hours emergencies.

Online Application

Air Force Aid Society (AFAS)    Army Emergency Relief (AER)
Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS)    Coast Guard Mutual Assistance

American Red Cross (for Armed Forces)

   Federal Employee Education and Assistance Fund




More Emergency Financial Assistance for Service Members and Veterans:

  • Operation First Response - assists wounded, injured and critically ill servicemembers and veterans from all branches; apply online 
  • Spokane County Veterans Services - provides counseling and emergency financial aid to honorably discharged indigent veterans and their families for rent, utilities, food, gas, and limited prescription assistance; 509-477-3690 
  • Minuteman Emergency Assistance Fund - awards grants to members of the Washington National Guard and their families who find themselves in temporary financial need.
  • WA Dept of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Innovations Program  - works to provide assistance to veterans and their families facing financial hardships due to deployments in support of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; 800-562-2308 
  • Operation Homefront Washington - provides financial assistance to military families coping with deployment and injury recovery; apply online or call 1-877-264-3968
  • Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) - the Unmet Needs program provides grants for unexpected financial difficulties as a result of deployment or other hardships directly related to military service; apply online
  • American Legion - the Temporary Financial Assistance program provides grants for minor children (and ages 18-20 if disabled or in high school) to help with housing, food and health costs. Parent or legal guardian must be or have been a veteran during any war era; call 800-433-3318 to receive information for local post 
  • Armed Forces Reserve Family Assistance Fund - for Reserve and Guard members and veterans, provides help for a need that can be handled by a referral to a craftsman or professional willing to provide a needed service, or through a direct grant of funds for repairs or bills; apply online 
  • USACares - provides grants for basic needs and housing assistance for post-9/11 servicemembers, veterans and their families; apply online
  • Aid and Attendance - an underutilized special monthly pension benefit offered by the Veterans Administration for eligible veterans and surviving spouses who require in-home care or live in nursing homes. A veteran must have served at least 90 days of active military service, one day of which is during a period of war, and must be discharged under conditions other than dishonorable. For more information, call 1-800-827-1000 or visit http://www.va.gov (type "Aid and Attendance" in the search block), or contact a local VA office  

More Emergency Financial Assistance, Not Military Specific:

  • Modest Needs - provides grants in the following categories: Self-Sufficiency (unexpected emergency), Independent Living (medical-related expenses) and New Employment (expenses required to begin new job, waiting for first paycheck); apply online 
  • Spokane Neighborhood Action Program (SNAP) - provides heating assistance, weatherization, food bank, money management, vehicle loan or repair, housing counseling, minor home repair; 509-456-7627
  • WA Dept of Social and Health Services (DSHS) - determines eligibility, provides information or assistance for many services - Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) or food stamps, Medicaid, medical help, developmental disabilities, mental health, adult and senior services, chemical dependency, child and foster care, and much more; apply online or call 877-501-2233
  • Salvation Army - rental assistance, transitional family housing, and warming shelter (below 15 degrees), food bank, and many other services; 509-325-6810 
  • Goodwill - provides many services, including programs for individuals who: are homeless, incarcerated veterans, disabled, unemployed (help with transportation, clothing, skills training and certifications - 462-0510), need help managing monthly finances, and pre-employment and job placement services for adults aged 18-64 who receive Social Security Insurance (SSI) and/or Social Security Disability Insurance; 509-838-4246
  • Catholic Charities - provides food, shelter, clothing, education, counseling and support to those in need, regardless of creed; 509-358-4250
  • Catholic Charities Housing Communities - 509-358-4250, ext. 6183
  • 2nd Harvest - Food banks throughout the area; check website for locations and hours
  • Women, Infants & Children (WIC) - supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant or breastfeeding women and to infants and children up to age five; 800-841-1410 for nearest office
  • Churches - numerous churches, and their ministries, help people of any faith or no faith
  • Volunteers of America - provides assistance with rent, utilities, bus passes and personal hygiene items, as well as transitional housing; call 509-624-2378
  • FigTree - online directory of community resources, agencies & ministries
  • 2-1-1 - dial this number to speak to someone about locating community resources for nearly any need; also at 509-838-4428
  • Area Resource Guide - for variety of needs
  • Spokane Area Resource List - another list for variety of needs
  • Benefits Check Up - good tool to find help for variety of needs, from National Council on Aging; 571-527-3900

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