Government and Community Services
The Department of Government and Community Services was created to:
- Facilitate improved community outreach
- Administration of government services
- Resolution of community issues
To improve the quality of life for Richland County constituents through outreach, mediation, advocacy, strategic programming, and education.
Creating community, improving lives, and moving to excellence.
- Develop productive relationships with community partners throughout the County.
- Engage and involve the public in policies and practices that directly impact communities.
- Measure impact of initiatives through surveys, reports, and involvement.
- Effectively communicate accurate and essential information to all audiences in conjunction with the Public Information Office and other County departments.
- Serve as an outlet between the County and its constituents, customers, and partners.
- Help satisfy unresolved issues and work to continuously improve public involvement in the government process.
- Elected officials and local municipalities
- Individual voters
- Residential communities and homeowner associations (HOAs)
- Business community
- Higher education
- Other county organizations (K-12 schools, churches, millage and ordinance agencies, etc.)
Questions change everything in community engagement
Max Hardy - TED Talk (Click HERE to watch the TED Talk)
GCS/COVID 19 Resources
SC Legal Services’ Comprehensive Rental Assistance Program Guide
Richland County Vaccination Sites
Minority Business Resource- Brookfield Properties
Richland County Spotlight – Harvest Hope Food Bank
Government and Community Services (GCS) is a proactive outreach arm of the County. GCS focuses on facilitating improved community outreach, administration of government services, and the resolution of community issues. GCS recognizes an “Organization of the Month” that exemplifies the importance of supporting the community and assisting in getting resources to those most in need.
Harvest Hope is South Carolina’s largest food bank, providing over 22.6 million meals annually to neighbors in need across the Midlands, Pee Dee and Upstate. Harvest Hope is on a mission to eliminate hunger and food insecurity in South Carolina. They operate programs that provide food for Richland County’s most vulnerable citizens – children, seniors, and rural residents who don’t have access to grocery stores. They also run an emergency food pantry in Richland County where anyone in need can get a week’s supply of groceries for free.
This year has been busy for Harvest Hope as they not only celebrate their 40th anniversary, but focus on many of the root causes of hunger brought to light during the pandemic. With Erinn Rowe, the newly named CEO at the helm, there are many new initiatives you’ll see from Harvest Hope.
Be sure to check out:
While a hunger-free South Carolina is still on the horizon, Harvest Hope is committed to serving the citizens in need in Richland County for however long it takes. Thank you to all who support their mission of building a hunger-free tomorrow.
To keep up with their work, you can follow Harvest Hope on their social media channels – Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.
If you are interested in partnering with Harvest Hope visit https://www.harvesthope.org/get-involved for information on volunteering, donating food or a financial gift, and hosting a food drive.
Richland County Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) Program
The U.S. Department of Treasury awarded Richland County Government $12.5 million to help local households that are unable to pay rent and utilities as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding is available through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) established by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021.
TO APPLY: The Richland County program is now open. Click here to access the online application portal. For assistance, call 855-216-9198.
Download frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the program. (PDF)
Download updated policies and procedures for the County's program. (PDF)
In addition to applying online, residents may also submit applications in person:
- The County’s Department of Government and Community Services will offer in-person assistance on a limited basis and by appointment only. Residents are urged to review the ERAP information and must bring all required documentation to their appointment. Residents can schedule appointments by calling 803-576-1513. When leaving a message, please provide your name and phone number for a return call.
- Richland Library is offering assistance to residents who need help completing the application. Schedule an appointment by calling 803-509-8371, texting 803-386-8506 or emailing email@example.com.
Please contact us with questions or comments.
To view Richland County GIS Mapping (Click Here)