Cash and Living Assistance for Unemployed and Low Income Families
All states have some form of living assistance for needy families such as single parent households or those that are unemployed. Financial and living assistance can be found from government agencies as well as local and national non-profits.
As there are numerous programs available, understanding which program or assistance you qualify for can be confusing and seem challenging as strict approval criteria may be required for different organizations.
Understand What You Are Applying For
Are you a veteran, a single parent, disabled, lost a job, etc? Programs are specific to a particular situation or background. Although, many programs will assist most families or individuals dealing with unemployment and having a hard time taking care of basic living needs – they just may prioritize specific issues based on their available resource.
Where to get help
Depending on what you are in need of, there may be an organization that specializes in that area. Common assistance includes helping paying bills, medical help, emergency shelter, help with food and cash loans or advances.
One of the quickest ways to get help is to reach out to your local community action agency as they generally can help you or put you in contact with partner agencies who can help with your specific need.
Frequency of help
An important aspect of getting help is how often you apply. Many organizations don’t have the resource to provide ongoing help for certain needs. As an example, you may receive a small cash loan or advance for an urgent situation – don’t expect to receive ongoing cash assistance. Many of the government programs or non-profit organizations are there to help as a temporary fix whilst you get back on your feet.
If you are in a situation that will require ongoing or long-term assistance, you should consider looking at potential government benefits, which may be able to assist.
What type of help is available
Assistance is reserved for those who are having issues meeting general living needs such as shelter, food, utilities, medical care or clothing – essential living needs.
For financial assistance there are 2 main programs: Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) and Supplement Security Income (SSI). Both programs have different criteria based on the state you live in. SSI is primarily reserved for those over with a disability, blind or over the age of 65. TANF is based on specific circumstances and does not have a high age limit to qualify for.
Help is out there
Regardless of your situation, there is help available. Everyone goes through difficult times and can use some help. If you are struggling financially and need assistance – seek it! There is no reason to help and the different organizations out there are non-judgmental and only want to help.
Take advantage of the financial and living assistance available and get back on your feet quicker.