Somerset mobile unit spreads welfare awareness

Somerset County is encouraging residents to get financial assistance through the use of a mobile social services unit.

"We're trying to encourage people to feel OK for reaching out and applying for benefits," says Joe Kunzmann, director of the Somerset County Board of Social Services.

The department has been loaned a bus from Essex County for the project. The bus is taken into communities and promotes programs such as food stamps, Medicaid and home heating assistance.

"The economy is impacting [a] greater number of people," says Kunzmann. "We're seeing more and more people come into our office on a daily basis to apply for assistance."

The number of applicants has doubled in recent months for the county's social services program.

The mobile welfare unit is expected to make a stop in Bergen County next week.

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