Social Services

There are public health service, foods programs, housing and heating assistance as well as financial assistance available.

Government-Provided Health Services

The New York State of Health insurance exchange is where anyone can buy health insurance and, if you qualify you get subsidized.

Essex County Public Health offers a wide variety of free services. It has a excellent web site with links to all sorts of details related to infants, aging, immunization clinics, cancer screening, mental health, alcohol and substance abuse and more. If you or your family or friends are facing a challenging health situation this is a good place to start to look for help.

The County Office for the Aging tries to help seniors find access to Food Stamps , home repair , personal care aids, congregate meals, home delivered Meals, HEAP (heating assistance), Income Tax help, phone discounts, EPIC (a state pharmaceutical program), medical transportation and more.

Medicare is for people who are over 65 or meet some other special criteria. This wikipedia article on medicare is a bit easier to understand than the official site.

Medicaid is the government program for low income people. This wikipedia article explains the program and how to find out if you qualify.

The Essex County Department of Social Services provides various assistance programs for citizens in need.

Food Assistance

Students at Keene Central School may qualify for the Federal School Lunch Program.  Qualifying for this program is an entry point to lots of other programs.

There is also the Food Stamp program ( its name is now SNAP) run out of Elizabethtown at 518-873-3437.

Locally, the Keene Food Pantry is located in back of the Keene Library and has a separate entrance.

For Seniors, congregate meals are offered mid-day at nearby locations and home delivered meals-on-wheels are available by calling 518-873-3784.

Housing and Heating Assistance

HEAP, the Home Energy Assistance Program of NY State provides help with heating bills and is also locally run out of Elizabethtown. Call 518-873-3437. ACAP also provides energy and weatherization assistance programs.

There is also a local chapter of Habitat for Humanity that has built a few homes in Keene.

The Adirondack Community Housing Trust is also a route to low cost housing in our area.  It is just starting a project to build 6 new homes in Keene, across from Town Hall.

Financial Assistance

One agency, the Adirondack Community Action Program (ACAP) tries to coordinate assistance programs for a particular family or individuals.

The NY State Department of Labor runs a website where you can read about and apply for unemployment benefits.

Social Security provides income to people over 62 and the disabled.

The County is the route to Federal TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) program. Call 518-576-3441 for more information. A summary of all the NY State assistance programs can be found here.