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NeighborImpact van to visit Madras


   This Friday, April 20, residents of Madras can benefit from NeighborImpact's mobile outreach program -- in the form of the "Answer Van."
   The van will travel from Bend to the NeighborImpact Madras office and then station there from 12 to 4 p.m. The office is located at 675 S.W. Marshall St.
   The Answer Van is a vehicle that has been retrofitted specifically to transport NeighborImpact staff to locations through out the tri-counties.
   On-site, staff members share information, referrals, utility assistance, food, and basic need items with individuals in need.
   According to Bend Emergency Services coordinator Ian Hadley, for those with limited financial assets, the Answer Van is like a "free store." But even more than that, residents in Madras who need assistance with their heating bills may request help with the following documents:
   . The Social Security numbers of all members of the household;
   . The residents' utility bill;
   . Proof of income for previous 30 days (for everyone 18 or over).
   Assistance will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis, and limited funds will be available.
   NeighborImpact, formerly the Central Oregon Community Action Agency Network, seeks to change the course of each family's future by giving them the tools they need to succeed.
   NeighborImpact's tool box includes Head Start, weatherization, home repair, energy and rent assistance, financial skills building, savings programs, assisting parents to find child care, tutoring homeless children, providing emergency and transitional housing to homeless families, home buyer education and feeding the hungry.