Government and Community Services
The Department of Government and Community Services was created to:
- Facilitate improved community outreach
- Administration of government services
- Resolution of community issues
To improve the quality of life for Richland County constituents through outreach, mediation, advocacy, strategic programming, and education.
Creating community, improving lives, and moving to excellence.
- Develop productive relationships with community partners throughout the County.
- Engage and involve the public in policies and practices that directly impact communities.
- Measure impact of initiatives through surveys, reports, and involvement.
- Effectively communicate accurate and essential information to all audiences in conjunction with the Public Information Office and other County departments.
- Serve as an outlet between the County and its constituents, customers, and partners.
- Help satisfy unresolved issues and work to continuously improve public involvement in the government process.
- Elected officials and local municipalities
- Individual voters
- Residential communities and homeowner associations (HOAs)
- Business community
- Higher education
- Other county organizations (K-12 schools, churches, millage and ordinance agencies, etc.)
Questions change everything in community engagement
Max Hardy - TED Talk (Click HERE to watch the TED Talk)
GCS Resource Guide
SC 2-1-1 serves as a safety net for all individuals needing help finding assistance, by helping improve the effectiveness and coordination of health and human services across the state. The statewide program provides information about and referral to health and human service resources. The service is available 24/7, 365 days per year. It is FREE and CONFIDENTIAL.
SC Legal Services’ Comprehensive Rental Assistance Program Guide
Wateree Community Action- Electric Assistance
Wateree Community Action- Water Assistance
SC Homeowner Rescue Program Information
What kinds of assistance does this program provide?
- Mortgage Payment Assistance
- Payment Assistance for Delinquent Property Taxes
- Mortgage Reinstatement
- Payment Assistance for Down Payment Assistance Loans
- Payment Assistance for Homeowner’s Utilities
- Counseling, Educational Services, or Legal Services
GCS Organization's of the Month (Archives)
February - Senior Resources
March - Sisters of Charity
April- Richland Library
May- Columbia Housing Authority
June- Homeless No More
July- Harvest Hope Food Bank
August - COMET
September- UWM Well Partners & Dental/Eye Clinic
November- Central SC Habitat for Humanity
December- Historic Columbia
February 2022- Reconciliation Ministries
March 2022- SC Dept. on Aging
June 2022- Pitch Inc
Government and Community Services (GCS) is a proactive outreach arm of the County. GCS focuses on facilitating improved community outreach, administration of government services, and the resolution of community issues. GCS recognizes an “Organization of the Month” that exemplifies the importance of supporting the community and assisting in getting resources to those most in need. This month’s organization of the month is PITCH INC.
Positively Influencing the Community with Heart, INC (PITCH INC) began in 2018 with a focus on homelessness. They expanded outreach to tackle food insecurity in 2020 due to the increased need created by the pandemic. Additionally, PITCH INC works with other organizations by serving meals and sponsoring meals at Palmetto Children's shelter each month. This past month, they started a new initiative- A community fridge program at Hyatt Park. They have been able to serve over 80 seniors in just the first two weeks of the program!
PITCH INC strives to serve seniors in the 29203 area. Here are some statistics to show the need in South Carolina. One out of 10 seniors face food access issues on a daily basis. 63% of seniors visiting food banks say they have to choose between food and medical care. These hunger concerns take a severe toll on a senior’s health and nutrition which puts them at risk for chronic health conditions like depression, asthma, and diabetes. And lastly millions of seniors qualify for monthly grocery assistance through SNAP, but only 42% receive SNAP benefits.
In light of this reality, PITCH INC would ask individuals, churches and other organizations for their help. Opportunities to serve include volunteering and/or sponsoring the fridge by supplying fresh produce and dairy items, and pantry staples. Please contact PITCH INC to volunteer once a month at the pop-up shop for seniors this summer or sponsor a monthly meal at Palmetto Children's Shelter.
Reach out for more information by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their website at https://www.pitchinc803.com/. Here are some additional promotional videos to learn more!
Emergency Rental Assistance (ERAP/ERA2)
UPDATE (MARCH 24, 2022): Richland County will resume processing existing Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) applications Monday, March 28 for eligible applicants currently in the review queue.
Applications will be reviewed by application and priority status, in accordance with U.S. Treasury guidelines, for as long as funding is available.
Applicants: You are encouraged to monitor your email and be prepared to update your information in the participant portal here after March 28. For application assistance, please contact the County’s call center: 855-216-9198, or email the ERAP team: email@example.com.
We are unable to open up the process to new applicants at this time.
To view Richland County GIS Mapping (Click Here)