Harvest America Corporation, which is a nonprofit organization, offers home ownership education, family financial programs, employment services, human trafficking program, emergency assistance with utility bills or disasters, and food assistance to those with low incomes.
"Participation is based on income," said Julio Victorio, service specialist. He is bilingual and can offer services in Spanish.
At one time, there was an office in Great Bend, but it closed, and so Victorio’s goal is to be in Great Bend once or twice a month to increase participation in Barton County.
"Our goal is to reopen in Great Bend," said Victorio. They would like to get the number of participants up and get people involved in services.
"Our services are free," said Victorio. "The only thing we charge for is a credit report on home ownership. The rest is free of charge."
They also offer options to avoid foreclosure, building credit and being a good steward of income.
Harvest America uses 125 percent of the 2011 poverty guidelines for qualifying participation. With a family size of one, qualified yearly income would be $13,613; two-$18,388; three-$23,163; four-$27,938; five, $32,713.
"If you are not working, we can help you find a job," Victorio said.
At one time, Harvest America had a weatherization service, but dropped it.
Victorio is based out of Dodge City. They also have offices in Garden City and Kansas City. Their mission is to offer services which encourage and support people to improve their lives and communities.
Harvest America is a 501C3 nonprofit organization. They receive funding through the Community Block Grant, Kansas Housing, NeighborWorks and the National Council of La Raca. The company started in 1981.
They have a website www.harvestamerica.org. The toll free number is 877-227-7764.