Welcome to the LifeHope Ministry at Northland
LifeHope is a ministry of Northland, A Church Distributed in Longwood and has traditionally provided benevolence funds to families in need in the congregation and the community.
LifeHope has grown in its vision and currently serves individuals and families through a holistic approach. LifeHope Advocates will thoroughly explore the individual or family's situation and pinpoint their unique needs.
Based upon assessment and family identification of strengths and needs, a plan will be created in which the advocate and family will work together to meet personal goals and strengthen connections to positive supports including the local church.
This LifeHope ministry is led by staff, trained volunteers and University of Central Florida BSW and MSW interns. Short and long term case planning options are available.
The LifeHope team expresses the purpose of Northland, A Church Distributed "to bring people to maturity in Christ" in all that they do. in the community, we reserve the right to invite applicants to worship.
For those guests who do not currently attend Northland Church or other churches attend Northland's worship services and to talk to them about church issues.
If you are not a member of Northland Church you are encouraged to also contact your home church for assistance.
What if I am not eligible for financial assistance?
We offer other services (on a space available basis) including different forms of counseling, support groups, financial coaching, subject matter classes, mentoring, and career coaching and counseling, all free of charge.
These services are provided to assist you in stabilizing your financial situation as well as develop healthy biblical and financial practices for a more secure future.
What about membership requirements?
Membership at Northland, A Church Distributed is defined as having completed the BELONG CLASS, the one-day MEMBERSHIP CLASS and engaged in a SMALL GROUP or SERVING.
If you have questions regarding church membership you may contact the Membership Director (Barbara Gritter, firstname.lastname@example.org or 407-937-0557) or visit the church office. The LifeHope guest application, our process and benevolence assistance eligibility is not the place to discuss or dispute the definition of church membership.
The LifeHope Benevolence ministry is a limited financial fund provided through the tithes and offerings of the Northland Church congregation. This fund is made available to Northland members, regular attendees and members of the community who are struggling financially due to unforeseen circumstances. This assistance is a gift, and repayment is not expected.
The LifeHope ministry team meets regularly to review applications submitted for consideration. Your request will be reviewed and you will be contacted if more information is needed, or to schedule an appointment if approved to take the next step in the process.
Guests must be willing to begin a journey that involves following agreed upon action steps to help put you in a place where you will no longer need our gift.
Where do you live?
The LifeHope ministry serves residents of Seminole and Orange County, as verified by your Florida ID. If you are not a member of Northland Church and live outside of these counties, we ask that you contact organizations in your own county before we can process your application.
We will ask you to:
• Be patient. The assessment and approval process for financial requests may take up to several weeks from the time you meet with an Advocate.
• Meet with an advocate team on a regular basis
• Attend worship
• Attend a budget class.
All applications must be completed online. The information contained on the application will be verified and the applicant contacted by phone or email with the next steps if applicable. We ask that you check your email regularly or be available for the phone call.
If an applicant is approved to move forward, an appointment will be scheduled with a LifeHope Advocate Team. Appointments are scheduled on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 9:00am and noon and limited evening appointments may be arranged. If you cannot keep your appointment, you must give a 12-24hr notice that you will not be able to attend or your eligibility will be denied.
Once an appointment has been scheduled for you and verified, plan to arrive 15 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment time. This is an important part of the process as additional information will be gathered at this time. If taking public transportation, we encourage you to plan accordingly.
• No checks will be issued during your first appointment.
• Completing this application and/or having an interview with a LifeHope Advocate does not guarantee that monetary assistance will be provided.
All guests will be offered an opportunity to receive various services (all free of charge) whether guest is eligible for financial assistance or not. In keeping with the holistic approach to ministry; classes, mentoring and/or counseling opportunities are options provided to all clients on a space available basis.
Although it is our sincere desire to provide financial assistance to all who ask, we are only able to consider requests that are short term in nature. We do not help with childcare, long-term or chronic medical, credit card debt, taxes, legal expenses or court fines, hotel/motel stays, eviction notices, Section 8 clients, or utility and housing deposits.
• All applications must be completed online.
• Click on the "Complete Application" button below to begin the application process.
• Computer and data entry assistance is available in the Care Center at Northland Church, Longwood Campus Monday-Thursday 10:00am-4:00pm.
• A government issued ID is required. (Florida ID or FL Drivers License)
• Prepare copies (no originals please) of all supporting information to accompany your application. They must be submitted to your Advocate/case manager during your first interview. Required documents include a household monthly expense report, a signed lease (if rental assistance requested), invoices or bills, supporting documentation for the need, and three (3) months of bank statements with details.
• A guest's application cannot be approved for eligibility until all information is received. It must be available for your first interview. Arriving without copies will delay or may disqualify the guest's eligibility.
• In order for applicants to discuss these issues candidly and without distraction, it is requested that applicants arrange for childcare during the interview process.
• If applicant is married, we ask both to attend the interview.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Will I receive my assistance today?
We will serve you today, but we will take you through our process to be considered for financial assistance. We will point you in the right direction financially and beyond, but we will not be able to help you financially today.
2. How long does the process take?
It may take up to two weeks to process your financial request, depending on your willingness to work with us to accomplish your goals. Now is the time to consider how willing you are.
3. My situation is an emergency. Will this be taken into account?
How long have you known about your situation? How did it become an emergency? If you are in need of financial assistance today, we may refer you to other agencies that may be able to provide more immediate assistance.
4. What are your criteria for assisting?
We serve guests on a first come first served basis. We take into account many things including the guest's needs and their efforts.
5. Why is your process so extensive?
We have been given the responsibility to be good stewards of the finances that our congregants have tithed. Since we may not know you, it is important for us to ask questions that will help us to make a wise decision. If we do know you, this due diligence process allows us to serve you in the best manner possible.
6. I do not have a government issued ID, will you still be able to assist me financially?
No, we will need you to connect with your local Florida Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to obtain a Florida ID or license prior to considering your request for assistance. Idignity provides Florida ID's to the homeless during their scheduled events. Please check their website for dates and location.
7. Why do you use the community resource list and suggest searching on Resource Point as a way of serving people? Aren't you just passing them off to someone else to deal with and not addressing the real issue?
We believe that God is a God of relationships and so it is our desire to serve you by exploring how your current relationships can come alongside you and by connecting you with others in your community who may be able to serve you as well or batter in your area of need.
8. I tithe on a regular basis. Will that be taken into account?
No, remember giving is giving without expecting anything in return.
9. What if I do not have 3 references, and do you actually check them?
Our process requires this and we can not move forward until we have checked three of your references. Yes, we do check all references. Is there a reason we should not?
10. I am in need of food, not financial assistance.
LifeHope is a benevolence ministry. We partner with organizations and ministries where food is their blessing to those in need. We will refer guests to Christian Help, The Sharing Center and Harvest Time International is the only need is food.
11. I am not a member of Northland Church, can I apply for assistance?
Yes, we welcome guests from the Seminole and Orange County community who have experienced a situation or crisis that causes them to need assistance. If they are members of another church we ask that they discuss this need with their home congregation first. If they do not have a home church, we will invite them to attend Northland. This is a requirement for anyone who receives financial assistance.
12. Where do you receive your funding from?
The Northland Church congregation is very generous. Giving is an act of worship. Through the generosity of the Northland congregation, LifeHope is able to assist in meeting the needs of others during their time of hardship. All funds distributed to guests are the direct results of the tithes and offerings from the Northland congregation.