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Help for families during the shutdown

By: Brennan

Thousands of federal workers, contractors, vendors and service providers in our county are being impacted by the partial federal shutdown. It can be frightening and stressful to be without a paycheck and unsure of when you will go back to work.  Whether it is food, financial assistance or other needs, here are some resources to get you and your family through this difficult time.

Want to help your neighbors in need?  There’s also information on providing cash and other donations to our local nonprofits.

Montgomery County, Maryland

- Health and Human Services

- Education

- Workforce Development / Employee Services

- Food Services

- Non profit Partners

- Religious Organizations

- Parks and Recreation

- Unemployment Insurance

- Utility Partners

Mortgage & Financial Help

2509 Good Hope Road Woodbridge, Virginia 22192, Open Monday through Friday, 9 AM – 4 PM  

 8350 Richmond Highway Alexandria, Virginia 22192, Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday - 10 AM - 4:30 PM Wednesday 10 AM to 8 PM; Saturday 10 AM to 2 PM (by appointment) 

 Prince George’s Community College, Center for Advanced Technology, Room 102 301 Largo Road Largo, MD 20774 , Open Tuesday through Friday – 9 AM to 5 PM Monday – noon to 8 PM  

Virginia Career Works– Prince William Center, 13370 Minnieville Road Woodbridge, Virginia 22192 

Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday – 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Wednesday – 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM


Steps to take if you’re at risk of falling behind on mortgage or rent

Cell phones/flexible payment options



BBQ Bus, 5830 Georgia Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20011

BBQ Bus Smokehouse & Catering said on Saturday that "fed friends affected by [the] shutdown" can get 25 percent off at its Georgia Avenue location "until everyone's back to work." 

Charlie Palmer, 101 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20001

At Charlie Palmer, anyone who shows up to the bar during lunch hours with a government I.D. can get a free fried-chicken sandwich, with the option of adding on a Blue Point Toasted Lager and fries for just $12. 

DC Reynolds, 3628 Georgia Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20010​

DC Reynolds's beer garden is offering a special lunch deal: $6 for a sandwich and a nonalcoholic beverage. All you need is a federal government I.D.  

&pizza, all D.C. locations 

This pizza chain is offering free pizzas for federal workers between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. throughout the shutdown.

Taco Bamba, 777 I Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20001

Taco Bamba's Chinatown location will be handing out one free taco to every federal worker as the shutdown continues.


Baked by Yael, 3000F Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20008

Baked by Yael is offering federal employees and contractors free coffee for the duration of the shutdown "while supplies last," the bakery said in a press release. It is also offering a free bagel sandwich or small soup each weekday while supplies last to essential employees at the National Zoo "who must stay at work to keep the animals safe."

The bakery is also offering free cake pop classes for federal employees and contractors, with owner Yael Krigman saying in a statement that she wanted to do whatever she could to "add some joy to a very stressful time for many people."

Bread Furst, 4434 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20008

Bread Furst is offering a deal apparently aimed at making government workers feel like one of their own workers. A "sign of the times" spotted hanging outside the bakery by Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema advertises a government employee discount. It says that "if you are a civil servant on furlough because of Presidential intransigence, please show your identification so that we may extend to you the discount we give to our own staff."

More Help

The Amalgamated Transit Union announced it will serve free means to impacted workers and their families. The meals will be served Monday January 14- Friday January 18 from 12pm-6pm at the Tommy Douglas Conference Center. That's located at 10000 New Hampshire Avenue in Silver Spring.


Reynolds Team Feed Feds- Are handing out 100 bags, each filled with groceries and a $25 gift card for government employees. Pick Up Location 14424 Albemarle Point Place 110B. Chantilly, VA 20151. Pick Up dates Fri Jan 25 9a-5p, Sat,Jan 26th 9a-1pm and Mon, Jan 28th 9a-5pm. Must show Federal ID and receive one bag per family. To find out more information  call 800-836-4295.


The  Howard County Department of Community Resources and Services ..... Giving out free groceries to affected families ( First- come first -serve basis). You'll need a valid government ID. Families can pick up groceries at the Bain Center every Friday 3-5PM during the shutdown. For more information 410-313-6400.

The Benedict Volunteer Fire Department, Rescue Squad and Auxiliary is hosting a Fried Chicken Dinner this SUNDAY, JANUARY 27th from 2PM - 4PM to assist the Furloughed Employees and their immediate family members free of charge. Please bring your Government Badge.The dinner includes Fried Chicken, Parsely Potatoes, Green Beans, Fruit Bowl and a dessert. Come on by and dine with us on Sunday! For more information you can call Debbie 301-367-1903

12 -year- old Aubrey Holland who lives in Alexandria,  heard about  the 42,000 Coast Guard families who are not getting paid even though they are still working. She decided to start a GOFUNDME page...here is the link where you can help................................................ https://www.gofundme.com/anchored-in-love-united-we-stand?member=&utm_so...

FREE Grocery Gift Cards - A Wider Circle is a non profit organization that is giving out Giant gift cards to families in need. Their mission is to help one individual and one family after another to rise out of poverty. Their holistic approach focuses on the creation of stable homes, workforce development, wraparound support, and neighborhood revitalization. Here's a link to our support for the government shut and furloughed employees: www.awidercircle.org/shutdown


An art school Art in Virginia is offering free classes to furloughed government workers. The Art League School of Alexandria is teaming with long-time artist Patrick Kirwin to offer classes called Creative Escapes. It's going to teach painting techniques for acrylic painting. The class will be every Tuesday at 1:30PM until the shutdown is over.