Older Adults Benefits
Our trained volunteers assist
older adults in applying for and maintaining public entitlements. Individuals are screened for programs that may provide financial assistance or services. The following programs are not fee-based, but some financial and demographic guidelines may determine eligibility.
LIHEAP Appointments Available
If you receive SNAP/Link benefits, formerly known as food stamps, your benefits will be reduced in March as a result of federal policy changes.
Learn more about how to be prepared and plan ahead. Click here for information on food banks and pantries in your area.
In Cook County, call the Greater Chicago Food Depository’s benefits hotline at 773.843.5416 or submit the online form to have them call you back. You can also log into your account on the Application for Benefits Eligible (ABE) website or create an account on ABE to learn more.
Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP)
SHIP is a free statewide health insurance counseling service for Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers. SHIP was initiated in the fall of 1988 within the Illinois Department of Insurance. SHIP currently has 186 offices throughout the state, and has more than 600 volunteer counselors. All offices are volunteer-based and supported by local sponsoring organizations that offer services to Medicare beneficiaries.
NSSC has more than a dozen SHIP volunteers who meet with people in both our Northfield and Niles offices. There is no charge to meet with a SHIP counselor.
- SHIP is not affiliated with any insurance company.
- SHIP counselors do not sell or solicit any type of insurance.
- Counselors are trained to educate consumers and answer questions about Medicare, Medicare Supplement, long-term care insurance, Medicare HMOs, private fee-for-service, and other health insurance. They also can organize and assist in filing Medicare and Medicare Supplement claims and analyze Medicare supplement and long-term care policies.
Questions about Medicare?
SHIP counselors are available to help by phone or Zoom. Counselors provide information and guidance about:
- Signing up for Medicare at age 65 or due to disability
- Health coverage after retirement
- Understanding Medicaid, MMAI and HealthChoice Illinois
- High prescription or healthcare costs
Funds (in whole/part) for this publication were provided through an award from AgeOptions through funding from the VAC5 Expanding Access to COVID-19 Vaccines grant.