Community Resources

Community Resources 

At Samuelson Elementary School, one of our goals is to be a center for resources in our community to support our students and their families. Below you will find a variety of helpful resources. 

  • Financial Assistance 
  • Community Meals  
  • Food Pantries and Community Gardens 
  • Clothing and Household Items 
  • Health Care and Mental Health Resources  
  • Out of School Time Youth Programming 
  • Employment Assistance 
  • English as a Second Language Classes 
  • Helpful Hotlines 
  • Emergency Shelters and Housing Resources 
  • Early Childhood Education 
  • Pregnancy Support
  • Legal Services 


Snap! CNXT (formerly School CNXT) 

Sign up for the CNXT application to keep up to date with Samuelson Elementary School events and resources: 

**You will need a unique code to log in for the first time. Contact Savannah Stuckmayer at 218-503-1056 or to receive your code or get your code HERE. 


Bilingual Family Liaisons 

515-242-8472 (including Spanish, Burmese, Karen, Karenni, Swahili and other languages) 


Financial Assistance 

Polk County Department of Human Services | 2309 Euclid Avenue | 515-286-2088 

  • Monday-Friday 7:30am-4:30pm 
  • Please complete the Polk County General Assistance Application before reaching out to other agencies. You will receive a “Notice of Decision.” If denied, other agencies may require this document before assisting you. 

Proteus, Inc. | Headquarters at 1221 Center St., Suite 16 | 1-800-372-6031 

IMPACT Community Action Partnership | 3226 University Avenue | 515-518-4770 

  • Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): provides a single payment towards winter heating bills to eligible households. Approval for the program establishes protection against disconnect between November and April. Applications taken November 1 – April 30 
  • GRASP: If your household meets the established income guidelines, your income is verified, and you are a resident of the city of Des Moines, you qualify to receive discounts on swim lessons, tennis lessons, basketball and much more! 
  • Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP): Available to residents of Polk County (including the city of Des Moines) who are in need of assistance for up to 12 months. Must be able to demonstrate a COVID-19 related impact to household income. Must be past due on rent or utilities to qualify. 

Child Care Assistance | 2309 Euclid Avenue | 1-866-448-4605 

Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Polk County | 2300 Euclid Ave. Suite D | 515-282-5800 

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as Food Stamps) | 2309 Euclid Ave.  

Lutheran Services in Iowa (LSI) | 3200 University Avenue | 515-271-7311 

  • Individual Development Account (IDA) Program: Program that helps you save for a car, home, business, or education. 
  • You can participate in this program if you: arrived in the U.S. with refugee status, have been in the U.S. for less than 5 years, have income, and are at or below 200 % poverty 
  • To sign up for this program, you will need: a valid ID, I-94 or Green Card, and proof of income (one month of pays stubs for every working member of your family). 
  • You will use a savings account to save money for a car, home, business, or education. LSI will contribute matching funds. LSI will give you a maximum of $2,000 for one person or $4,000 for a family. 
  • You must complete all required trainings in order to receive matching funds. 
  • Many other supportive services available. See website for details. 
  • Home main – Lutheran Services in Iowa ( 

Mediacom Connect2Compete | 1-855-904-2225 

Iowa Lifeline Phone Program | 1-877-565-4450 

  • Financial assistance to low-income Iowa residents to afford telephone service. 
  • Must be enrolled in a qualifying social service (Medicaid, SNAP benefits, TCA, SSI, Section 8, LIHEAP, free and reduced lunch) or be below 135% the federal poverty guidelines. 
  • Lifeline and ACP Free Wireless Plans | TruConnect 

Iowa Credit Union Foundation | 7745 Office Plaza Drive N., Suite 170, West Des Moines | 800-860-6180 


Community Meals  

Zion Lutheran Church | 4300 Beaver Avenue | 515-270-8142 

  • Wednesday evening meals during school year 

Hope Ministries Café | 1310 6th Avenue (Bethel Mission Men’s Emergency Shelter) | 515-265-7272 

  • Email:  
  • Monday-Saturday: Breakfast at 7:00am; Lunch at 12:00pm; Dinner at 5:00pm 
  • Sunday meal hours: Breakfast at 8:00am; Lunch at 1:30pm; Dinner at 5:00pm 
  • Meals for any community members in need. 

Creative Visions | 1343 13th Street | 515-244-4003 

Polk County Central Senior Center | 2008 Forest Avenue | 515-286-3677 

  • Monday, Wednesday and Friday starting at 4:00pm until they run out of food. 
  • To-go food only; no dine-in options available. 
  • No age or income requirements. 

Salvation Army Mobile Breakfast Service | 1326-1330 6th Ave | 515-282-3599 

  • Tuesday and Friday mornings, travels to five locations around central Des Moines. 
  • Call for more information. 

Westchester Evangelical Church | 4919 Aurora Ave | 515-278-1615 

  • Friday morning pancake breakfasts for Meredith and Hoover students. 

Des Moines Dream Center | 1301 23rd St | 515-288-3353 



Food Pantries and Community Gardens 

Polk County River Place | 2309 Euclid Avenue | 515-286-3695 

  • Once per calendar month: receive a four-day supply of food and other non-essential non-food items; bring photo ID for each individual in family; bread and produce daily 
  • Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm 
  • Food Pantries – Polk County Iowa 

Urbandale Food Pantry | 7611 Douglas Ave Ste. 34-35, Urbandale | 515-261-6688 

  • Monday-Thursday 9:30am-6:30pm 
  • Saturday 8:00am-12:00pm 
  • Bring a form of identification for everyone in the family seeking assistance. 
  • Bakery items, fruit and vegetables, and fresh bread are available daily for anyone who needs it, no ID required. 
  • Some hygiene products available as well. 
  • Urbandale Food Pantry | Community Food Assistance 

Beaverdale Farmers’ Market | 48th St. and Franklin Ave. 

  • 4:00-7:00pm every Tuesday from June 6 to Sept. 12, 2023 

Woodlawn Community Garden | 3126 Twana Drive | 515-237-1386 

Franklin Community Garden | 55th and Franklin | 515-248-6383 

LSI Community Gardens | 515-271-7307 

  • Sign up to receive weekly vegetables grown by former refugees in central Iowa. 
  • Drake Neighborhood Association Community Garden (Just South of the intersection of University Avenue and 27th St.) 
  • Intentional Eucharistic Community Garden (3300 University Avenue) 

LSI Global Greens Farmers Market | 3200 University Avenue 

  • 9:00am-1:00pm Saturdays June – October 

Creative Visions | 1343 13th Street | 515-244-4003 

IMPACT Community Action Partnership | 3226 University Avenue | 515-518-4770 

  • One time per calendar month; every 7 days for emergency food; once a week for produce. Must call ahead to place an order.  
  • Food may be picked up or delivered. 
  • Food Assistance | IMPACT ( 

Salvation Army | 1326-1330 6th Avenue | 515-282-3422 

  • Monday-Friday 9:00am-12:00pm, 1:00pm-3:00pm 
  • Once a month; Bring ID for each individual in household 
  • Other services available as well. 

St. Vincent de Paul | 1426 6th Avenue | 515-282-8327 

Eat Greater Des Moines Community Refrigerators | Various locations and hours 

DM Area Religious Council (DMARC)| 3816 36th Street | 515-277-6969 

Friendship Center | 1526 Martin Luther King Jr. Pkwy | 515-244-1701 

Monroe Elementary School | 3015 Francis Ave | 515-242-8425 

  • Open Wednesdays from 3:00-4:00 
  • Samuelson families welcome. 
  • Can call to make an appointment as well. 

Hillis Elementary School | 2401 56th St. | 515-242-8412 

  • Open Fridays 7:30am-9:00am; 1:00pm-3:00pm
  • Call to make an appointment.  
  • Samuelson families welcome. 

Samuelson Elementary School | 3929 Bel Aire Rd. | 515-242-8441 

  • Small food shelf with non-perishables available.  
  • Contact Savannah Stuckmayer to make an appointment or send needs and coordinate a pick up time 218-503-1056 or 

Bidwell Riverside | 1203 Hartford Ave | 515-244-6251 



Clothing & Household Items 

Dress for Success | 7025 Hickman Rd, Urbandale | 515-288-0130 

Salvation Army Family Store | Various locations 

Des Moines Dream Center | 1031 23rd St | 515-288-3353 

Zion Lutheran Church | 4300 Beave Ave | 515-270-8142 

  • Open Tuesdays and Wednesdays 10:00am-12:00pm. 
  • Clothing for adults and children as well as bedding and some housewares. 

St. Vincent DuPaul Thrift Store | 1426 6th Ave | 515-282-8328 

Hope Ministries Thrift Store | 4640 Merle Hay Rd | 515-262-0876 

  • Monday-Saturday 9:00am-7:00pm 
  • Reasonably priced new and used clothing, shoes, furniture, and other household goods. 

Central Iowa Shelter and Services Closing Closet | 1420 Mulberry St | 515-280-2988 

  • Adult clothing for men and women as well as winter clothing. Open to anyone in need of clothes. 
  • Call ahead at 515-280-2988 

Highland Park Church Clothing Closet | 4260 NW 60th Dr. | 515-244-3182 

Bidwell Riverside | 1203 Hartford Ave | 515-244-6251 

Friendship Center | 1526 Martin Luther King Jr. Pkwy | 515-244-1701 

Hillis Elementary School | 2401 56th St. | 515-242-8412 

  • Call to make an appointment.  
  • Samuelson families welcome. 

The Free Store | 834 10th St (entrance is on 11th St.)| 515-282-3733 

  • Supports families and children who have escaped domestic violence situations and those suffering from other trauma including natural disaster and criminal assault. Provides donated furniture and household items. 
  • Email:  
  • Call for more information. 
  • The Freestore – The Freestore 

Sleep in Heavenly Peace | 844-432-2337 x 5525 

Des Moines Refugee Support 

  • Des Moines Refugee Support identifies and bridges gaps for refugee families as they establish their new lives in Iowa. We focus on immediate and basic needs, early education, activities, and empowering teenagers. 
  • Follow their Facebook or Instagram pages for updates. 
  • Email: 



Health Care Resources 

Insurance Assistance: 

Every Step | 1111 9th St. | 515-288-1516 

Healthy and Well Kids in Iowa (Hawki) | 1-800-257-8563 

  • Healthy and Well Kids in Iowa (Hawki), federally known as Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), provides health coverage to children and families with income too high to qualify for Medicaid, but can’t afford private coverage. 
  • Eligibility for Hawki is determined using the same rules as Medicaid for children, except with higher income standards. Some members are required to pay a small monthly premium, ranging from $5 to $40, which is based on the household’s income. 
  • Email: 
  • Apply at this link and click “apply for benefits”: Self Service Portal Home Page ( 
  • More information can be found here: Healthy and Well Kids in Iowa (Hawki) | Iowa Department of Human Services 

Medicaid | Call 855-889-7985 7:00am-6:00pm Monday-Friday 


Free or Low Cost Medical Clinics: 

Christ the King Church | 5711 SW 9th St | 515-285-2888 

Dr. Nick Palmer/Jim Ellefson Free Medical Clinic | 1607 E 33rd St | 515-266-7622 

  • Free walk-ins Tuesdays 1:30pm-4:30pm, Thursdays 5:30pm-8:00pm 
  • Office visits, minor procedures, removal/freezing of skin lesions, ingrown toenails, suturing lacerations, exploring for foreign bodies, removal of sebaceous cysts, physicals. 

Margaret Cramer Free Medical Clinic at Reach Church | 2725 Merle Hay Rd | 515-279-9766 x42 

  • Free walk-ins Thursdays 6:00pm-8:00pm. Arrive to register at 5:30pm. 
  • Illness/minor injury care, well child exams, immunizations, school/sport physicals, TB testing, disease management, diabetes testing, high blood pressure testing, depression assistance, and more. 

Grace United Methodist Church | 3700 Cottage Grove | 515-255-2131 

Primary Healthcare | 1200 University Avenue Suite 120 (walk-in location) | 515-248-1500 

  • Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm 
  • Dental clinic located at Suite 100 (515-248-1888) 
  • Sliding scale clinic. Call to make an appointment. Walk-ins available for non-emergent care (allergies, sore throats, fevers, small cuts/bruises etc.) 
  • A wide variety of medical, dental, pharmacy, behavioral health, HIV/AIDS services, and homeless support 
  • Interpreters onsite 
  • West Side Medical Clinic also has walk-in hours available (7555 Hickman Rd, Urbandale, 515-225-7201) 
  • University – PHC Iowa 

Primary Healthcare School-Based Medical Clinics | 515-242-8488 | Ex. 1 for medical clinic | Ex. 2 for dental clinic 

  • All insurance is accepted, including Title 19. Sliding and set fee options are available. 
  • Hoover High School 4800 NW Aurora Ave, Mondays and Thursdays 8:30am-12:30pm 
  • Kurtz Opportunity Center 1000 Porter Ave, Wednesdays and Fridays 8:30am-12:30pm 
  • Sports physicals, school physicals, acute care, reproductive healthcare, and well-baby checks for children of pregnant/parenting students. 
  • Call PHC to schedule and mention you would like to be seen at Kurtz or Hoover. 
  • Dental Care: Nolden Gentry Dental (at Kurtz Opportunity Center only). Regular dental care and more in-depth care such as on-site root canals. 
  • DMPS School-Based Health Clinics – Des Moines Public Schools ( 


Mental Health Clinics and Resources: 

Innovative Counseling and Consulting | 2340 Euclid Ave | 515-235-5224 

  • Monday-Thursday 9:00am-7:00pm, Friday 9:00-3:00pm 
  • Telehealth available by appointment. 
  • Walk-ins welcome. 
  • Therapy for individuals, groups, couples. Services available in Spanish. 
  • Services ( 

Mosaic Family Counseling Center | 6200 NW Aurora Ave, Urbandale | 515-724-8920 

  • Funded by DMPS contract and available at select DMPS buildings. Samuelson offers on-site Mosaic counseling. 
  • Evening appointments available. Can meet during the school day or outside of school hours at Samuelson. 
  • Can be a waiting list. Call to check availability. 
  • Client Services ( 

Samuelson School Counselor | Carrie Weers | 515-242-8441 

  • If you have concerns about your child and would like Samuelson’s counselor to check-in with them, please call or email Carrie Weers. 
  • Email:  

Lutheran Services of Iowa  | 3125 Cottage Grove Ave  | 515-274-3761 

Orchard Place Child Guidance Center  | 808 5th Ave. | 515-244-2267 

Young Women’s Resource Center | 818 5th Ave | 515-244-4901 

Children and Families of Iowa | 1111 University Ave | 515-697-7916 

  • Accepts private insurance, Medicaid and Title 19. Varying sliding fee scale options. 
  • Evening appointments available. 
  • Sees children, adults and/or families. Offers Child-Parent Psychotherapy, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing, Parent Child Interaction Therapy, Behavioral Health Intervention Services and other psychiatric services. 
  • Email:  
  • Children & Families of Iowa | Mental Health Services ( 

Counseling for Growth and Change | 1248 8th St., Suite 201, West Des Moines | 515-243-1020 

Catholic Charities | 601 Grand Ave | 515-237-5045 

Compass Clinical Associates | 2500 82nd Pl, Urbandale | 515-412-5112 

Unity Point Counseling and Psychiatry | 6000 University Ave West Des Moines | 515-241-2300 

Kavalier and Associates | 1003 Grand Ave., West Des Moines | 515-267-1003 

Iowa Lutheran Hospital Pediatric Behavioral Health Services | 700 E University Ave.  | 515-263-5322 

  • Accepts private insurance and Title 19. Sees children, can see adults and families as related to the needs of the child. 
  • Inpatient and outpatient programs available. 
  • Services for suicidal thoughts, behavioral problems, problems at school, poor self-esteem, sexual identity issues, and more.  
  • Children and adolescents ages 5-17. 
  • Pediatric Behavioral Health Services | UnityPoint Health – Des Moines 

Mercy Child-Adolescent Partial Hospitalization Program | 1111 6th Ave | 515-271-6111 

Mercy Pediatric Psychiatry | 411 Laurel St., Suite 3310 | 515-643-6290 

  • Accepts private insurance and Title 19. 
  • Sees adults, children and families. 
  • Limited evening appointments available. 
  • Call for more information. 

Broadlawns Child and Adolescent Services | 1761 Hickman Rd, Medical Plaza, Second Floor | 515-282-5695 

Mind and Spirit Counseling Center | 8553 Urbandale Ave., Urbandale | 515-274-4006 

Youth Mental Health Serivces Iowa | 612 Locust St. | 515-833-2379 

  • Telehealth options available. 
  • Wide variety of services offered for youth and adolescents. See website for options. 
  • Private pay, private insurance, Medicaid/Medicare accepted. Staff will work with you to work out a payment plan if needed. 
  • Call 515-233-2250 to schedule an appointment through the Family Counseling Center in Ames. 
  • Programs – ( 

Ellipsis | 918 SE 11th St | 515-282-9377 



Out of School Time Youth Programming 

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa | 9051 Swanson Blvd, Clive | 515-288-9025 

Boys and Girls Club 

  • Meredith Club (6th-12th) |Meredith Middle School | 4827 Madison Ave. |Tyler Von Seggern, Unit Director: 515-262-5695 
  • Gregory and Suzie Glazer Burt Club (K-12th) |Drake University | 2500 Forest Ave. |Abby Block, Unit Director: 515-271-4560

Willkie House | 900 17th St | 515-243-7817 

  • Works in cooperation with schools to provide academic instruction and assistance. Snacks and dinner provided. Other indoor and outdoor activities available. 
  • Fee-based after school care. Accepts Childcare Assistance. 
  • Transportation provided at select DMPS schools, including Samuelson. 
  • Email:  
  • Home | Willkie House Inc 

Freedom for Youth Ministries | 2301 Hickman Road | 515-282-4822 

  • The following after-school programs are offered for K-12th grade students: Whiz Kidz (elementary); Discovery (middle school); Journey (high school); Employment Training (ages 18-25) 
  • Faith-based, free after school programming. Bible lessons, social skills, free time, games, art projects, and sports. 
  • A meal is provided before students are transported home for the evening. 
  • Transitional Housing for youth ages 18-21. 
  • Picks up from Samuelson on Mondays for Whiz Kidz. 
  • K – 5th Grade — Freedom for Youth Ministries 

Metro Kids | Samuelson Elementary | 3929 Bel Aire Road | 515-447-8772 

  • Metro Kids is a fee-based before and after-school childcare program available in elementary schools on school days. All kindergarten-5th grade students are eligible. 
  • Program hours are school dismissal-5:30pmpm. On non-school days, all-day child-care services are available at select regional sites. 
  • Metro Kids Care – Des Moines Public Schools ( 

Young Women’s Resource Center | 818 5th Avenue | 515-244-4901 

Boy Scouts Mid-Iowa Council 

Girl Scouts of Greater Iowa 

Des Moines Public Library: Franklin Ave | 5000 Franklin Ave | 515-283-4152 

Girls Rock! Des Moines | 4801 Franklin Ave  

Des Moines Parks and Recreation 

Campe Fire Heart of Iowa | 1450 Oriole Rd, Boone | 515-432-1417 

Genesis Youth Foundation | 2500 University Ave. | 515-343-0149 

YMCA of Greater Des Moines | Various locations 

Iowa Youth Chorus | 515-985-9703 

  • Using choral music to help every child reach their fullest potential. 
  • Email:  
  • Annual tuition cost. Income-adjusted tuition available to those who need financial assistance. 
  • Iowa Youth Chorus 

Boys2Men | 515-771-1639 

Jewels Academy | 1620 Pleasant St., Suite 216 | 515-243-0159 

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach | 515-294-1017 

Des Moines Breakerz | 100 East Euclid, Suite 17 (behind Park Fair Mall) | 515-250-6331 



Employment Assistance 

Central Iowa Works | 1111 9th Street, Suite 260 | 515-243-2130 

  • Email:  
  • Initiative of the United Way. Works as a workforce intermediary to build solutions that help businesses, families and communities thrive. 
  • Connects employers with talented workers in jobs that provide career growth and financial stability. 

Evelyn K. Davis Center for Working Families | 1171 7th St. | 515-697-7700 

IowaWORKS Center | 200 Army Post Road | 515-281-9619 

Iowa Workforce Development | 1000 E Grand Ave | 515-281-5387 

  • Provides services to individual job seekers through IowaWORKS partnership.  
  • Included are Unemployment Insurance, the Iowa Division of Labor, the Iowa Division of Workers’ Compensation, and IowaWORKS. Visit website for links to specific division services. 
  • Contact Us | Iowa Workforce Development 

Dress for Success | 7025 Hickman Rd, Suite 3, Urbandale | 515-288-0130 

DMACC Workforce Training Academy | 515-256-4951 

  • Email:  
  • Carer transition coaching to support individuals looking to obtain career advancement, regardless of prior education experience.  
  • Qualified individuals may participate for free. Visit website for more details. 
  • About the Program ( 



English as a Second Language Classes 

Forest Avenue Library | 1326 Forest Avenue | 515-283-4152 

Friendship Center | 1526 Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway | 515-244-1701 

Lutheran Services of Iowa | 515-271-7335 

  • Community Based English Language Learning (CBELL) empowers immigrants and refugees with numerous accessible online and in-person English classes.  
  • Participants gain language and social skills along with cultural awareness to help them gain employment, integrate and thrive in their new communities. 
  • Register at any time by making an appointment. Must take a pre-test when registering. 
  • Call or email  
  • Community Based English Language Learning – Lutheran Services in Iowa ( 

Trinity United Methodist Church | 1548 8th Street | 515-288-4056 

EMBARC | 4801 Franklin Ave, Suite 1159 | 515-512-1881  

Westchester Evangelical Free Church | 4919 Aurora Ave | 515-278-1516 

  • Wednesdays 7:30pm 
  • Childcare provided. Cost is the price of a book. 
  • All levels welcome. Practices vocabulary, pronunciation, conversation and personal focus. 



Helpful Hotlines 

Drug, Alcohol and Addiction Help Line | 1-855-581-8111 

Iowa Victim Service Call Center | 1-800-770-1650 | 24 hour statewide hotline 

  • For victims of domestic and/or sexual abuse, individuals concerned about loved ones, human trafficking victims, and other violent crimes. 

Eyerly Ball Program for Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) | 945 19th St. | 515-241-0982 

Suicide and Crisis Lifeline | 9-8-8 

  • Free, confidential, 24/7 hotline that connects those in crisis with trained counselors across the United States. 

United Way of Central Iowa | Call 2-1-1 

  • Connects callers to support and assistance, including: rent assistance, food pantries, affordable housing, utility assistance, health and mental health resources, child care and after-school programs, elderly care, job training programs, legal services, crisis intervention, disability services, and volunteer opportunities. 



Emergency Shelters and Housing Resources 

Emergency Shelters: 

Central Iowa Shelter & Services | 1420 Mulberry St. | 515-284-5719 

  • Central Iowa Shelter & Services’ Mission is to provide low-barrier shelter, meals and support services at no cost to adults experiencing homelessness and to facilitate their move toward self-sufficiency. 
  • Central Iowa Shelter & Services 

Primary Healthcare | Homeless Outreach: 515-248-1850 

St. Joseph Emergency Family Shelter | 1535 11th Street | 515-248-1850 (part of centralized intake) 

  • Only emergency shelter in Polk County where the entire family unit can stay together. St. Joseph’s provides safe, clean housing for homeless families for a limited stay. 

Hope Ministries Hope Center for Women and Children | 3333 E University | 515-264-0144 

  • 30-day, short-term shelter for women and children in need. Each individual is assigned a case manager to provide practical and compassionate guidance. Some longer-term programs available depending on need. 
  • Women’s Shelter at Hope Ministries ( 

Hope Ministries Shelter for Men at Bethel Mission | 1310 6th Ave | 515-244-5445 


Housing Resources: 

Cross Ministries (located in Cottage Grove Church) | 1050 24th Street | 515-279-9998 

Anawim Housing | 1750 48th St., Suite 100B | 515-244-8308 

  • Monday-Friday 8:00am-4:30pm 
  • Email:  
  • Provides Permanent Supportive Housing to individuals who have experienced homelessness, mental illness, substance abuse, physical disabilities, diagnosis of HIV/AIDS, or who are fleeing domestic violence. 
  • Call 515-809-1166 for all housing information. 

Home, Inc. | 1618 6th Ave. | (515) 243-1277 

  • Monday-Friday 8:30am-12:00pm, 1:00pm-4:00pm 
  • Counseling and education to help people become successful homeowners or achieve permanent rental housing. Resources available on all things related to housing, including rental assistance. 

Section 8/Public Housing, City of Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency | 2309 Euclid Ave. | 515-323-8950 

Felon Friendly Housing 

Reduced Rental Agencies and Apartments 



Early Childhood Education 

DMPS Universal Preschool | 515-242-7588 

  • State funded program to provide voluntary, universal access to high-quality preschool education programs for the state’s 4-year olds. 
  • DMPS Universal Preschool classes are held four days per week: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. 
  • There are two options for length of day: Half-day preschool (no cost) and Full-day preschool (parent pay or 1 unit childcare assistance). 
  • Locations are Jesse Franklin Taylor, McKee, Mitchell, and Woodlawn early childhood centers. 
  • Some scholarships are available for the full-day Universal Preschool classrooms at McKee, Mitchell and Woodlawn. 

DMPS Head Start Preschool | 515-242-7588 

  • Federally funded comprehensive child development program that serves income eligible children ages 3-5. 
  • Half-day and full-day options available. 
  • Locations are Jesse Franklin Taylor, McKee, Mitchell, and Woodlawn early childhood centers. 

DMPS Shared Visions Preschool | Email:  

  • Supported by the State of Iowa and provides quality child development programs for high-risk children. 
  • Applicants must live within the attendance area and meet income guidelines. 
  • Offered at Capitol View, McKinley, and Moulton Elementary Schools. 
  • Full-day program for 4-year olds, five days/week. 

DMPS Cowles Montessori Preschool | 515-242-7353 

  • The only public Montessori program in Iowa at Cowles Montessori School.  
  • Full-day and morning-only preschool for 3-4 year olds. 
  • Offered five days/week. 
  • Fees apply. Must apply through open enrollment. 

Drake University Head Start & Early Head Start | 3206 University Avenue | 515-271-1854 

Grace Pre-School | Grace United Methodist Church 3700 Cottage Grove | 515-279-5942 

DMPS Supported Early ACCESS and Early Childhood Sites/Services | 515-242-8213 

  • Available for eligible children 3-5 years old.  
  • Staff assist in identification, assessment and development of individualized educational plans for eligibile children.  
  • A continuum of services are tailored to meet the individual needs of the student. 
  • If you believe your child, age birth to 5 years old, may need assistance, call to make a referral at 515-242-8213. 

Child Care Assistance | 2309 Euclid Avenue | 1-866-448-4605 



Pregnancy Support 

Agape Pregnancy Center | 2550 Martin Luther King | 515-255-0243 

Alpha Women’s Center | 3605 SE 14th St. | 515-285- 5700 

Birthright | 5806 Hickman Rd. | 515-633-2133 

  • Free diapers; Birthright services are always free, non-judgmental and confidential 

Young Women’s Resource Center | 818 5th Avenue | 515-244-4901 

EveryStep Stork’s Nest and Family Nest | 1111 9th St., Ste. 320 | 515-558-9950 

  • Stork’s Nest is an educational incentive program for new and expecting moms who live in Polk County and meet income guidelines. Participants earn points for healthy behaviors such as keeping medical appointments, smoking cessation, WIC participation, breastfeeding, school attendance and more. Points can then be redeemed at the Stork’s Nest store for needed baby items such as diapers, clothing, strollers, cribs and car seats.  
  • Parenting and prenatal classes are also available. 

EveryStep Healthy Start and Empowerment Program | 1111 9th St., Ste 320 | 515-558-9946 

  • Visits to pregnant and parenting women that would like extra support to ensure a healthy child and family as well as their own health. 
  • Pregnant and/or parenting women with a child under the age of six. 
  • Call to learn more. 
  • EveryStep Provider Resources | Healthy Start 

Count the Kicks | 515-650-8685 



Legal Support 

American Friends Service Committee | 4211 Grand Avenue | 515-274-4851 

  • AFSC’s Iowa Immigrant Rights Program works with immigrants in Central Iowa to help build a sense of community so that new immigrants will be able to participate in the political processes in their communities. 

Justice for Our Neighbors | 2024 Forest Avenue | 515-255-9809 

  • Welcomes low-income immigrants of all faiths into our churches and communities by providing free, high-quality immigration legal services, education, and advocacy. 

Iowa Legal Aid | 666 Walnut St., 25th Floor (validated parking available) | 1-800-532-1503 

  • Clinic hours at Monroe Elementary Tuesday 8:00am-4:00pm, Wednesday 1:30pm-5:00pm 
  • Clinic hours at King Elementary Monday 1:00-5:30pm, Wednesday 7:30am-12:00pm 
  • Walk-ins allowed; call each school ahead if possible. 
  • Legal support for issues related to family and juveniles, housing, consumer and small claims court, benefits, disaster relief, and more. 
  • Iowa Legal Aid