Print This Page Print This Page

March 2023 – We are expanding services for special populations – please support CCHCC!

March 2023

En Español: Esta es una carta solicitando una donación para el trabajo que hace CCHCC. Si tiene preguntas sobre esta carta, o para mas información sobre donando a CCHCC, llame a (217) 352-6533 y pregunte por Chris o Adani.

Champaign County Health Care Consumers (CCHCC) is undertaking an enormous effort to serve even more people in our community – specifically focusing on “special populations” that are low-income and underserved in our community, and who are suffering the ravages and strain of living in persistent poverty.

CCHCC is building new programs to significantly increase services to these special populations and bring greater health and economic stability to their lives: low-income seniors, low-income people with disabilities, homeless and near-homeless individuals, and pregnant and parenting women incarcerated in the County Jail. Please read on to learn more about our exciting new initiatives, and what you can do to help support these efforts.

Hope Village – a tiny homes village for chronically and medically fragile homeless individuals: After many experiences working with medically-fragile homeless individuals in 2021 to help them get housed, CCHCC developed the idea of creating a tiny homes village with intensive case management services for chronically homeless individuals in our community. We saw first-hand how our county’s current system of housing that is available for homeless individuals does not work well for a subset of homeless people: the chronically homeless and medically-fragile homeless individuals. These are individuals who have many challenges, traumas, and health problems, who are not able to be easily housed and maintained in permanent housing.

CCHCC is excited to be collaborating with Carle and UIUC to create “Hope Village” – a tiny homes village to house this extremely vulnerable population. We believe that “housing is health”. Stay tuned for more information on this exciting new project!

Services for low-income seniors: CCHCC is growing our services for low-income seniors – specifically those in our community who, like many around our the nation, are under-enrolled in programs like Medicare Savings, Medicare Extra Help, and SNAP.

The Medicare Savings Program helps low-income seniors qualify for financial assistance to help cover Medicare premiums, deductibles, and out-of-pocket costs for health care. The Social Security Administration estimates that Medicare Savings helps a senior save over $5,300 per year. The Medicare Extra Help Program helps low-income seniors qualify for help with Medicare Part D costs and the costs of prescription drugs. The Medicare Extra Help Program can help low-income seniors save up to $2,050 per year.

These two programs combined can help a qualifying low-income senior save over $7,350 a year! In addition, SNAP is the food stamps program to make groceries more affordable, and too many low-income seniors do not know that they can qualify for this benefit. A low-income senior getting the maximum SNAP benefit could receive over $3,300 a year. All of these programs are notoriously under-enrolled in by low-income seniors, meaning that too many of these individuals are going without the necessary support to help make their health care, prescriptions, and food more affordable. CCHCC is expanding our outreach, education and enrollment work in order to help identify and enroll low-income seniors in our community in these program, so that they can live healthier, more economically-secure lives.

Services for low-income (or no income) people with disabilities: CCHCC is very excited to be the first and only organization in Champaign County to make Disability Application Services available to county residents with disabilities who have low-income (or no income) for free. We are building a Disability Application Services Program to help individuals with disabilities to apply for both disability income programs: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

These programs have to be applied for through the Social Security Administration (SSA), and they are notoriously difficult to apply for, and to get approved. These programs typically bring qualified beneficiaries a guaranteed income for the rest of their lives, but too many people who apply are turned down the first time, and, all too often, people just give up trying because it is so difficult. The application process can take months, and even years to complete. CCHCC will provide this vital service to county residents, free of charge.

Services for homeless and near-homeless individuals: While CCHCC already provides many services to homeless individuals, we are expanding our outreach and services in specific ways. We are developing a specific program to provide homeless and near homeless individuals with all the services we routinely provide, as well as helping with Disability Applications for this population. We will coordinate our outreach and enrollment services with the many providers in our community who are working with homeless individuals.

Pregnant and Parenting Classes in the Jail: A new law in Illinois – HB3653 – requires all county jails to offer Pregnant and Parenting Classes to jail inmates, and specifies certain topics to be covered. The Champaign County Jail is contracting with CCHCC for us to deliver these weekly classes, and CCHCC’s own Paulette Colemon-Peeples is leading these classes!

You can help! Please consider making a contribution to help support CCHCC’s work in all of these areas. Besides financial contributions, you can also help by spreading the word about our programs and work, and directing people in need to our organization

Thank you for your support! We appreciate your financial support for our services. Together, we are building a stronger, healthier community for all!



Claudia Lennhoff
Executive Director
Champaign County Health Care Consumers