The Charlottesville Department of Social Services joins with the community to provide social services that meet essential needs, promote self-sufficiency, and enhance the quality of life for all residents.

Available Programs

The department administers benefits programs to help meet the basic needs and promote self-sufficiency for low-income individuals and their families and family services programs to protect children and adults from abuse and neglect and to promote and support the development of healthy families.

Applying for Benefits

Citizens can apply for benefits:       

  • Online through the customer portal called Commonhelp                 
  • Through a paper applications that can be obtained at our office in the city hall annex, 120 7th Street, N.E., or online.

How to Report Possible Adult or Child Abuse

During regular business hours, call our office at (434) 970-3400 and ask to speak to the on call worker.

After business hours or on holidays, call the following toll free phone numbers - these phone lines are open 24 hours per day, 7 days a week:

  • 1-800-552-7096 for the Virginia Child Protective Services hotline
  • 1-888-832-3858 for the Virginia Adult Protective Services hotline
  • Adult protective services concerns can also be reported online.

How to Contact the Department or Case Worker

  • Call our office at (434) 970-3400
  • Use the online form to contact your benefits case worker to ask a question or report changes
  • Use the online form to submit a general question or comment

Getting Help in Greater Charlottesville - A list of available resources  


In accordance with Federal law and the U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, political beliefs, or disability.

To file a complaint  of discrimination, write to the USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TTY).