General Assistance Office
An important function of township government is to provide General Assistance to residents who are going through a financial hardship. General Assistance is designed to be a safety net after all other resources have been exhausted. A client must meet the following criteria:
- Reside in the Town of the City of Galesburg*
- Qualify according to specific financial, income and asset guidelines
- Not be eligible for other government welfare programs such as TANF/SSI/AABD/RRA
- Not be eligible for Veterans' Assistance
- Be unemployed and willing to search for a job
- Be in the process of applying for disability benefits and have medical documentation
TO APPLY FOR ASSISTANCE, pick up an application at the Office of General Assistance, 121 W. Tompkins Street, Galesburg, IL during office hours: Monday-Friday from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Alternately, you may print off an application here General Assistance Application. You will also need to print off the Verification Request Form which lists the documents you will need to bring to your appointment Verification Request Form. Then please call our office at 309-343-9059 to schedule an appointment and discuss eligibility criteria with a General Assistance representative. Once a client' s eligibility for General Assistance is confirmed, vouchers are available up to the grant amount to help pay for rent, food, utilities, clothing, personal items and/or household supplies. The application process from start to finish can take up to 30 days and continued eligibility must be redetermined every 30 days.
*The Office of General Assistance for the Town of the City of Galesburg also provides the General Assistance case management services for the following other townships in Knox County: Cedar, Copley, Galesburg, Haw Creek, Henderson, Indian Point, Knox, Lynn, Maquon, Ontario, Orange, Persifer, Sparta, Truro, Victoria and Walnut Grove.
Emergency Assistance for Residents of CEDAR, HENDERSON, KNOX, SPARTA, & TOWN OF THE CITY OF GALESBURG townships:
The Office of General Assistance began offering Emergency Assistance to residents of the Town of the City of Galesburg in 2014. Knox Township began offering Emergency Assistance to residents of Knox Township as of January 1, 2019. Cedar, Henderson & Sparta Townships began offering Emergency Assistance as of June 1, 2019. The purpose of Emergency Assistance (EA) is to help alleviate a life-threatening situation or help pay for an expense that would help a resident obtain or maintain employment. Emergency Assistance is a one-time grant up to $1,000 in a 24 month period. All qualifying adults on an application automatically become ineligible to receive EA again for at least 24 months. There is a maximum lifetime limit of $1,500 in EA. The types of situations that may be eligible include, 5-day notice or eviction notice, utility shut-off (Ameren or Water). Emergency Assistance is NOT available for food, medication, gas cards, car repairs, furnace or water heater repairs and security deposits.
Adults who receive any amount of SSI or TANF will not quality for EA.
Adults with minor children in the home must have some source of income (employment, child support, unemployment, etc.) AND apply for TANF, bring us paperwork from your first TANF appointment showing denial for income or TANF pending status. Any sanctions or non-cooperation automatically make you ineligible for EA.
TO APPLY FOR ASSISTANCE, pick up an application at the Office of General Assistance, 121 W. Tompkins Street, Galesburg, IL during office hours: Monday-Friday from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Alternately, you may print off an application here General Assistance Application. You will also need to print off the Verification Request Form which lists the documents you will need to bring to your appointment Verification Request Form. Then please call our office at 309-343-9059 to schedule an appointment and discuss eligibility criteria with a General Assistance representative.
Catastrophic Fire Assistance, as part of the Emergency Assistance Program, for Residents of CEDAR, HENDERSON, KNOX, SPARTA & TOWN OF THE CITY OF GALESBURG Townships:
A person or family MAY quality for Catastrophic Fire Assistance in the event of a fire where there is no renter's/homeowner's insurance and the premises are no longer habitable as determined by the Fire Department. This is only available to individuals who do not qualify for General Assistance. Catastrophic Fire Assistance is designated for help with a security deposit and/or 1 month's rent at a registered rental (if in Galesburg). The maximum grant amount is $1,000.00. Catastrophic Fire Assistance can only be granted once in a 24-month period and applies to all occupants of the home.
Both offices at the Town of the City of Galesburg have a Notary on staff who will be glad to notarize papers free of charge for township residents. Please call 309-343-9059 to set up an appointment.
Information and Referral
The Office of General Assistance provides information about, and referrals to agencies and organizations in the community for the benefit of township residents: food pantries, energy assistance, housing, clothing, medical, education/training and job search resources.
Food Pantries in Knox County
Helpful Organizations in Knox County
The Office of General Assistance also keeps a list of local job openings for anyone who would like to drop in and pick one up.
Community Work Program/Assistance for Non-Profit Groups
Galesburg non-profit organizations are encouraged to contact the township caseworker with any minor jobs they need assistance with. General Assistance clients, who are able to work, can be assigned through our Community Work Program, at no charge, to assist at your agency.