You are not alone

Social Services Team

You are encouraged to contact the JWF Social Services Team for guidance navigating local, state, and national assistance programs for which you may be eligible.  You don’t have to be in a medical emergency to contact JWF social services:  CONTACT SOCIAL SERVICES TEAM – HERE

Covid-19 Assistance Programs

211 is a centralized resource for various assistance programs that focus on different areas of need, including utilities, housing, food, and healthcare.  211 empowers Oregon and Southwest Washington communities by helping people identify, navigate, and connect with local resources. This program can be accessed by dialing 211 from your phone, or by going to the following websites: 

If you’re at risk of homelessness?   Find out how to apply for rent relief  VISIT HERE

Unemployment Insurance (UI)The CARES Act passed by Congress will provide $260 billion in enhanced and expanded unemployment insurance (UI) to thousands of entertainment workers throughout the country who are being furloughed, laid off, or finding themselves with no work.  There are a number of resources (listed below) that can help you navigate UI or the benefits provided by the CARES Act. The primary resource should be your state’s unemployment office website.

Medical Information and Guidance:

State Resources for Various Financial and Insurance Needs:

Portland- Renter and Homeowner Protections

Restaurant Workers Assistance

Local, State & National Assistance Programs

Centralized resource for various assistance programs (utilities/ housing/ food/healthcare)

Housing and transportation assistance for low-income Multnomah County residents age 55+

Medicaid for low-income adults, or health insurance with tax credit assistance through federal marketplace
Washington: (and)

Oregon Department of Human Services
Food, cash, child care, and refugee assistance for low-income adults and families

Medicaid, food assistance, and caregiving for people who are blind, disabled, or age 65+

Washington Department of Social and Health Services
Food, cash, child care, and refugee assistance; Medicaid and caregiving for people who are blind, disabled, or age 65+

Apply for Social Security Retirement, Social Security Disability (SSD) and/or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Project Access NOW (Portland-metro area)
Connect low-income, uninsured clients to the donated primary and specialty care they need. Pay health insurance premiums for people who qualify for coverage under the Affordable Care Act but can’t afford the expenses necessary to access their care. Connect low-income people being discharged from the hospital to resources such as transportation, car seats, and temporary housing to help them get home safely and more easily access follow-up care

Health and social services for people who are living with HIV, and people who are part of the LGBTQ and gender non-conforming communities


Consumer advocacy with insurance companies (health, auto, etc) and financial entities (banks, collections agencies, mortgage brokers, etc)

Free or low-cost legal aid

Relief Organizations for Musicians & Music Industry Professionals

MusiCares (Recording Academy/Grammys) 

MusiCares provides a safety net of critical assistance for music people in times of need. MusiCares’ services and resources cover a wide range of financial, medical and personal emergencies, and each case is treated with integrity and confidentiality. MusiCares also focuses the resources and attention of the music industry on human service issues that directly influence the health and welfare of the music community.

Sweet Relief General Musicians Fund (Accepting applications now)

Sweet Relief Musicians Fund provides financial assistance to all types of career musicians and music industry workers who are struggling to make ends meet while facing illness, disability, or age-related problems.

Music Health Alliance (MHA)

Music Health Alliance (MHA) is a regional organization that also works in 42 states.

MHA offers three primary areas of results driven healthcare services with an emphasis on preventing illness and staying well. Protect yourself and your family with the most appropriate and affordable health insurance or ways to pay for your healthcare. MHA offers guidance and access to State and Federal Health Insurance options for individuals and/or family members, Comprehensive Major Medical Insurance and Medicare supplement options for self-employed individuals and families, those with no group benefit options and the underinsured (insurance that does not meet one’s specific needs).

  Experienced direction to remove barriers and meet your needs is our most valuable area of expertise in healthcare. MHA offers professional guidance and direction through the health care system as a personal advocate, educator and navigator to simplify and translate health insurance policies, Medicare, medical bills, healthcare reform and other medically related needs.

  Connect with the health care that you need the most through our proprietary network of resources. MHA offers access to primary care services, dental care and mental health counseling for insured individuals as well as low cost services for uninsured and low-income music industry professionals nationwide. MHA also offers counsel and access to financial help for prescription medication, medical supply resources and financial assistance for qualifying individuals. 

 Musicians Foundation, Inc. As the oldest non-profit of its kind in the United States, Musicians Foundation is dedicated to assisting musicians, and their families, in times of emergency, crisis, or transition.

Jazz Foundation of America  Since ’94, JFA has provided a pro bono network for uninsured musicians in health crisis. 

Academy of Country Music ACM Lifting Lives:  Diane Holcomb Emergency Relief Fund  Through partnerships with artists and strong ties in the music industry, ACM Lifting Lives® funds music health programs while also serving members of the music community who face unexpected hardships through its Diane Holcomb Emergency Relief Fund. 

The Actors Fund  The Actors Fund fosters stability and resiliency and provides a safety net for performing arts and entertainment professionals over their lifespan. 

Bagby Foundation for the Musical Arts The Foundation offers small grants to support opera and classical music professionals, with a
focus on pensioners.

American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) Relief Fund
Administered by The Actor’s Fund
The American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) Relief Fund provides support and temporary financial assistance to members who are in need.  AGMA contracts with The Actors Fund to administer this program nationally as well as to provide comprehensive social services.

Blues Foundation – Hart Fund

Portland, Oregon The Blues Foundation established the HART Fund (Handy Artists Relief Trust) for Blues musicians and their families in financial need due to a broad range of health concerns.

Haven Foundation The mission of The Haven Foundation is to offer interim financial assistance to freelance professionals in the arts who face crises. The Foundation’s reach is the United States, and its awards are granted with a view to helping individuals overcome temporary adversity and return to full-time work.

Please carefully read the Guidelines for Assistance before applying for a grant.

SoundCheck Wellness
SoundCheck Wellness is a nonprofit foundation that provides financial assistance to musicians and tour support crew with a goal of establishing and maintaining wellness before the point of crisis.  Beginning in 2020, financial grants for dental/vision/health insurance premiums, mental health counseling fees, and substance abuse treatment costs will be awarded using an anonymous randomized system to candidates who meet pre-specified criteria.  SoundCheck Wellness will also maintain a network of holistic health and wellness resources tailored to the unique lifestyle challenges of touring musicians, managers, engineers, and technicians to help you #SoundStrong.  SoundCheck Wellness (619) 379-6560


Sight & Sound  We created Sight & Sound in 2014 when we learned that there was little to no optical care for those in the music industry. We have since conducted thousands of exams and delivered glasses, sunglasses and readers to thousands more. We love music and those who create it.  We find tremendous joy in providing care to the music community. We also decided to make everything we provide free for those in and near the music industry.

What do we do at Sight & Sound? We provide free vision care to those in the music industry at trade shows and industry events around the country. We have partnered with the Grammy’s Musicares, Folk Alliance International, The International Bluegrass Association, The Blues Foundation, and many others in the past. We create mobile vision clinics on site to provide free eyecare to those without access to vision care. We have completed thousands of exams and provided eyewear to thousands at many trade shows and health fairs.

EyeCare America
An initiative of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, EyeCare America administers two eye care programs through a pool of nearly 6,000 volunteer ophthalmologists. Since 1985, EyeCare America has helped more than 1.8 million people, with 90% of services provided with no out-of-pocket cost to the patient. The Seniors Program is available to eligible adults ages 65 and older. Volunteer ophthalmologists in local communities provide free medical eye exams, and up to one year of physician follow-up care for any condition diagnosed during the initial exam. The Glaucoma Program offers free glaucoma eye exams to uninsured, eligible individuals.

Lions Clubs International
Lions Clubs International provides financial assistance to individuals for eye care through local clubs. A local club can be found by using the “club locator” button found on their website at

Mission Cataract USA
Mission Cataract USA coordinated by the Volunteer Eye Surgeons’ Association, is a program providing free cataract surgery to people of all ages who have no other means to pay. Surgeries are scheduled annually on one day, usually in May. Telephone: (559) 797-1629. 

Operation Sight  Operation Sight is the ASCRS Foundation’s US-based charitable cataract surgery program. Its mission is to eliminate treatable cataract blindness in the United States. By leveraging the combined strength of established charitable organizations and ASCRS-member volunteer surgeons, Operation Sight is providing needed care to those unable to access or afford surgery. 

Essilor Vision Foundation (EVF)
Essilor Vision Foundation (EVF) is proud to support charitable eye doctors across the U.S. by offering philanthropic programs to promote vision.  In 2018, EVF will launch a new program “Online Charity Portal” that offers in-kind lenses, frames as well as how-to’s, and guides to expand vision services in the community.  The second program is an in-office cause campaign intended to inspire parents, patients and optometrists’ staff to adopt the cause of vision by helping to raise awareness and funds to support the cause.  Our third initiative highlights EVF’s sponsorship of Optometry Cares’ Healthy Eyes Healthy Children program that provides optometrists $5,000 grants to fund community-based vision programs.  Visit to sign up today.

New Eyes   New Eyes offers prescription eyeglasses to children and adults who are in need. You can’t sign up directly — you’ll need help from a professional, like a doctor or someone in a social services agency.

Optometry Cares – the AOA Foundation  Established in 2006, this foundation is committed to expanding eye health and vision care access to everyone in the U.S. in order to enhance human performance and quality of life. InfantSEE® is a free public health program delivering no-cost comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants within the first year of life. Delivered by AOA optometrists, the program is available to all families regardless of their income or access to insurance coverage. Established in 1991, VISION USA provides basic eye exams to Americans in need, and is currently available in 40 states and the District of Columbia. AOA member optometrists donate their services at no cost.

American Foundation for the Blind  Since 1921, the American Foundation for the Blind has helped ensure individuals who are blind or visually impaired have access to necessary information, technology, education, and legal resources to live independent and productive lives. Esther’s Place at the AFB Center on Vision Loss in Dallas, Texas is one of many innovative programs. It is a fully furnished model home fitted with simple adaptations and products designed to make daily life more manageable for individuals with vision loss. The AFB Center on Vision Loss provides life-changing information and more than 500 products and devices on display to assist people with vision impairments.


AUDIENT is a national nonprofit hearing care alliance uniting hearing health care professionals, suppliers, and related groups with the common goal of providing access to quality hearing aids and related care for low-income hearing-impaired people. AUDIENT encourages hearing care accessibility through a network of dedicated hearing health care providers in the United States. AUDIENT sees that each income-qualified applicant is referred to a hearing care professional in their community who is dedicated to supporting those in need of quality hearing care. AUDIENT serves as a third party administrator by performing income qualification, collecting the funds from the patient as agent of the provider, and managing the database of outcome measures from each patient. Costs and pricing are designed to be reasonable for both patients and providers of care.  SightLife, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit (formerly the Northwest Lions Foundation (NLF)) designed and developed the AUDIENT Alliance after many years of experience coordinating the activities of the Lions hearing aid recycling program for the Pacific Northwest. A committee of nationally recognized hearing care professionals advised NLF during
the development stage.

Hearing Aid Project: Hearing Aid Assistance The National Hearing Aid Project is a unique model and one-of-a-kind collaboration created by Hearing Charities of America (HCOA). It addresses the increased demand for hearing aids by providing hearing aids to low-income individuals on a national scale. The project brings organizations together so that each fulfills a specific role in providing hearing aids to the individuals that need them. HCOA has partnered with the Department of Speech-Language-Hearing: Sciences & Disorders at the University of Kansas to maintain and track all of the hearing aids in the program.

Hearing Charities of America:  The Hearing Aid Project 

The National Hearing Aid Project is a unique model and a one-of-a-kind collaboration. It addresses that the demand for hearing aids among low-income individuals is too great for any one organization to handle alone. The Project launched as of August 1, 2016 and has helped form a network throughout the country that can generate the necessary resources and support to improve the quality of life for those with hearing loss.

The Hearing Aid Project brings organizations together to fulfill specific roles in the process of getting hearing aids to those who couldn’t otherwise afford them. Accepting and reviewing applications, refurbishing hearing aids, performing hearing health evaluations, and soliciting support and services from others who can support the project—each contribution gets us one step closer to a healthier, hearing world.


Hearing Loss Association of America:  Financial Assistance 

Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) is the nation’s leading organization representing consumers with hearing loss. Our primary purpose is to educate ourselves, our families, friends, coworkers, teachers, hearing health care providers, industry, government, and others about hearing loss. HLAA provides adults and children with tools for self-help; sensitizes the general population about the special needs of people who have hearing loss; and promotes understanding of the nature, causes, complications, and remedies of hearing loss.

Miracle-Ear Foundation

Starkey Hearing Foundation 


Charitable Smiles
Charitable Smiles is a Non-Profit, 501(c)(3) Approved Dental Charity, helping people who can’t afford dental treatment get the care they need. We assist in pairing patients with participating dentists who volunteer their chair-time.

Finding Free Dental Work Charities 

HHS Where can I find low-cost dental care? 

Needy Meds National Dental Referral List