- Programs & Services
- Housing Program
- Food Pantry
- Community Counseling
- Job Search Workshops
- Tenant Education Workshops
- Affordable Housing
- Community Resources
- Request Services Information
Programs & Services
Families Forward is here to help.
Emergencies can happen to anyone: a death in the family, a loss of a job, an illness, or a divorce can be devastating, both emotionally and financially. Our goal is to prevent the downward spiral leading to fear and hopelessness that can occur as a result of a crisis, and ensure that the children’s welfare and stability are protected as much as possible. Click here to learn more, or haga clic aquí para aprender más.
Families Forward now offers a comprehensive, monthly calendar of available services at its Program Center at 8 Thomas. Click here to learn more.
Financial Literacy Class for Kids 6 Years+ and Adults
PricewaterhouseCoopers will be at Families Forward’s Program Center to give a lesson on credit and debt, as well as saving and investing. There will be a break-out session and an opportunity to ask questions. Click here to learn more. (Updated 8.3.16)
Free Cell Phones Through Assurance Wireless
Assurance Wireless, working with a government benefit program, is providing eligible households with a free cell phone with minutes and texts at our Program Center. Click here to learn more.
Free Financial Consultations through Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Orange County
Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Orange County will be at Families Forward’s Program Center to provide free consultations with a financial coach. Please click here to learn more.
Social Services on-site at Families Forward
The Social Services Agency of Orange County will be at Families Forward’s Program Center to to help enroll clients in Medi-Cal and Cal Fresh (Food Stamps). Please click here to learn more.
Housing for Families
Families Forward’s Housing Program is designed to help families who have recently faced a crisis that left them homeless. Families Forward helps these families get back on their feet by providing housing, counseling, career coaching, life-skills training, and referral services. Families enrolled in the program may receive rental subsidies to give them time to regain their self-sufficiency. Length of stay in the Housing Program varies from family to family.
Through partnerships with local apartment communities and access to Families Forward’s housing resources, families who have lost their housing are able to access rental housing.
Candidates for the Housing Program must have a minor-aged child and be homeless. This is an intensive program designed to help motivated families achieve and maintain financial self-sufficiency.
How to Apply
There is a high demand for entry into our Housing Program and we cannot guarantee placement. If you are interested in applying to the Housing Program, please call our office at (949) 552-2727 during business hours or complete a request for services information.
What Happens Next
Because we cannot guarantee placement in a home at any particular time, we do not keep a waiting list. Whenever there is an opening in the Housing Program, our case managers review the family information forms that have been submitted. Please keep your contact information current to help us reach you more easily if a new opportunity opens.
If you are in an emergency situation or other crisis, call us and we will do our best to assist you in locating other options or check the Community Resources page for additional resources.
Housing Program FAQ’s
1. How do I apply for the Families Forward Housing Program?
Complete a Family Information Form by calling us at (949) 552-2727 during business hours, and we will contact you if you meet the qualifications and if there is housing available.
2. How do I know if I qualify for the Families Forward Housing Program?
You must have a minor-aged child under 18 years of age and be homeless. Families Forward Homeless Intervention is an intense program specifically designed to assist a family in achieving and maintaining financial self-sufficiency. Our clients must have the desire and perseverance to work with our case managers to become self-sufficient.
3. Do you offer immediate or emergency housing?
We do not have emergency shelter. For emergency shelters in your area, please contact 2-1-1 Orange County, a general resource center that serves all of Orange County. If you are looking for affordable housing, try searching www.ochousing.org.
4. Do you offer rental or utility assistance?
Families Forward does not have grant funding for rental or utility assistance. 2-1-1 Orange County can provide a list of current agencies that may have funding for these types of assistance.
Do you need food?
Food assistance, in the form of nonperishable items such as canned goods, rice and pasta, is available to income qualifying single individuals, couples, and families residing in South Orange County (from Tustin to San Clemente). When available, fresh produce, bread and eggs are offered. Essential infant supplies such as baby food and diapers may also be provided when available.
Please note that appointments are required to receive assistance. Please call ahead (949) 552-2727 to register for this program and schedule an appointment during business hours. Food must be picked up at the Families Forward Program Center located at 8 Thomas in Irvine. Driving Directions
To qualify, you must live in South Orange County or be homeless. We are part of a network of food providers and do our best to stay current with all the food resources in Orange County. To meet your needs, we may refer you to another provider that is closer to your residence. Please see the Food Pantry Policy in English and Spanish for more details.
How to Apply
Call us at (949) 552-2727 from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm Monday through Thursday; 9:00 am – 1:00 pm on Fridays. We are closed Saturday and Sunday.
What Happens Next
We are required to collect copies of the following information to comply with grant requirements:
- Photo ID
- Proof of residence in South Orange County (utility bill, lease agreement, etc)
- Proof of income (unemployment, child support, disability)
- Complete a registration form
Please see the Food Pantry Policy for more details.
Food Pantry FAQ’s
1. When is the Food Pantry available?
Our normal Food Pantry hours are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 9:20 am – 4:30 pm. To provide the best service to our clients, we use an appointment system. Please call (949) 552-2727 to make an appointment.
2. What is the process for picking up food?
For your first scheduled food appointment, arrive at Families Forward at 8 Thomas in Irvine with your driver’s license or identification card, a utility bill or other proof of residency, and a proof of income. If you are a new client, we will collect information about you and your family to create your file and assist you in addressing other needs. You will be required to bring your photo ID to each appointment.
3. Am I allowed to “shop” the Food Pantry?
Due to safety and liability reasons, clients are not permitted in the shelving area. However, we provide an optional program called Client Choice in which clients are able to select their preferred food items from an order form rather than receive a prepackaged food basket. Download more information in English and in Spanish Appointments are required.
4. How often can I visit the Food Pantry?
The Food Pantry may be accessed up to 12 times a year. You may pick up food one time per month, waiting at least 30 days between each food visit.
5. What areas do you serve?
We serve cities in South Orange County – Click here for a full-screen interactive map
|Aliso Viejo, CA|
Aliso Viejo, CA, United States
|Corona Del Mar, CA|
Corona Del Mar, Newport Beach, CA, United States
|Dove Canyon, CA|
Dove Canyon, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, United States
|Coto de Caza, CA|
Coto de Caza, CA, United States
|Dana Point, CA|
Dana Point, CA, United States
|Lake Forest, CA|
Lake Forest, CA, United States
|Foothill Ranch, CA|
Foothill Ranch, Lake Forest, CA, United States
Irvine, CA, United States
|Laguna Beach, CA|
Laguna Beach, CA, United States
|Laguna Hills, CA|
Laguna Hills, CA, United States
|Laguna Niguel, CA|
Laguna Niguel, CA, United States
|Laguna Woods, CA|
Laguna Woods, CA, United States
|Lake Forest, CA|
Lake Forest, CA, United States
|Mission Viejo, CA, United States|
Mission Viejo, CA, United States
|Newport Beach, CA, United States|
Newport Beach, CA, United States
|Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, United States|
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, United States
|San Clemente, CA, United States|
San Clemente, CA, United States
|San Juan Capistrano, CA, United States|
San Juan Capistrano, CA, United States
|Silverado Canyon, Orange County, CA, United States|
Silverado Canyon, Orange County, CA, United States
|South Laguna, Laguna Beach, CA, United States|
South Laguna, Laguna Beach, CA, United States
|Trabuco Canyon, CA, United States|
Trabuco Canyon, CA, United States
|Tustin, CA, United States|
Tustin, CA, United States
Families Forward’s Community Counseling Program features solution-based counseling focused on identifying what the participant wants to accomplish. Counseling is short-term, individual, marital, family, and group counseling for personal and interpersonal concerns.
Who is eligible?
Community Counseling services are available to income eligible families with minor age children residing in Orange County. Fees are based on a sliding scale. No one will be turned away due to inability to pay.
When are appointments available?
Hours of operation are available by appointment on Monday-Thursday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm as well as Monday and Thursday evenings as needed.
How do I get started?
Job Search Workshops
Looking for a job?
Whether unemployed, looking for a better paying job, or having trouble finding or keeping a job, Families Forward provides free job search workshops to the general public.
Families Forward’s career coaches assist individuals with strengthening their resumes, interview skills and navigating the job search process successfully. Basic English language skills are necessary for this program.
Free “Job Launch” Workshops
Our innovative Job Launch Workshop equip you with current, lifelong job search skills, and empower you with the confidence you need for achieving and maintaining workplace productivity.
Sign-up is required and space is limited. Please call 949-552-2727 to sign up. Please note that childcare will not be provided during these workshops.
All workshops are held at our Program Center at 8 Thomas in Irvine. Driving Directions.
Tenant Education Workshops
Learn to be a smarter renter! To help any renter, novice or experienced, become a THRIVING renter, Families Forward provides free tenant education workshops to the general public.
Learn more about
- affordable housing,
- the rental application process,
- how to overcome your biggest barriers,
- renter’s responsibilities during tenancy,
- what to expect at the end of your lease, and
- tips to ensure maximum security deposit refund!
All workshops are held at our Program Center at 8 Thomas in Irvine. Driving Directions
Registration is required and space is limited. Please call 949-552-2727 to register or complete a Tenant Education Workshop Registration Form. Basic English language skills are necessary for this program. Please note that childcare will not be provided during these workshops.
All participants will receive a comprehensive Tenant Education Guide to take home with advice, guidelines and worksheets as a practical tool to use in the apartment search and rental process.
Families Forward manages the application process and access to a select number of Affordable Housing units. Families Forward will announce availability of any new units on our web site. As units become available, applications are accepted on a first-come, first serve basis. Once an open unit is filled, we will not maintain a waiting list for future availability. To qualify, applicants must complete all required forms and provide specific documentation that they meet income qualifications for the designated rental unit.
At this time Families Forward does not have any available units for rent. Please check back on our website periodically for the Interest List for Families Forward Affordable Housing.
- Current tenants: log into your resident portal here for maintenance and account information.