Money Assistance California
California may be home to beautiful beaches and lots of sunlight, but it’s also home to one of the largest unemployed populations. With an employment rate of over 7 percent (Nov 14), California ranks at number 45 for employment rates. If you are unemployed or need financial assistance for other reasons, there are a few services in California that may be able to offer help:
Assistance with utilities: California has several programs specifically designed to provide assistance with utility bills. The CARE (California Alternate Rates for Energy) could help you get up to 35 percent off of your monthly utility bill. You may also get assistance through The Family Electric Rate Assistance Program provides lower rates for your electric bill and the Energy Savings Assistance Program provides free weatherization services to help reduce energy expenses.
Emergency Cash: For situations that require cash, it is important that you don’t set yourself for more financial pain by taking on a bad loan. If you are in need of cash make sure you completely understand the terms and all fees associated with it. Visit our responsible lending section for loan options that may be suitable for your situation.
Food Assistance: If you need assistance with getting food on your table, the state of California provides assistance through the Food Stamp and WIC program. Stipends are provided each month to help supplement food budgets. Additionally, you may qualify for special assistance through the Emergency Food Assistance Program. The Emergency Program provides supplies for families with children or very low income in the event of a financial emergency. You may also qualify for financial assistance through local charities or food banks.
Rent and Mortgage: Need help with rent? You can get assistance with rent and mortgage payments through the Homeowner Assistance Program and the Renter Assistance Program. Additionally potential homeowners can receive assistance for a down payment through the California Homebuyer’s Down Payment Assistance Program (CHDPAP). Each program requires applicants to provide proof of need. The rental assistance programs are often limited to 12 months of assistance.
Medical Assistance: In addition to traditional medical programs like Medicaid and CHIP, California offers several different programs designed to help low income families get insurance coverage. The Healthy Families program provides insurance for families with premiums as low as $4 per month. You can also get assistance from the Operation Access program that helps low income families receive necessary surgical procedures for free or very low cost. The procedures are performed by volunteer doctors. In addition to state run programs there are many low cost or free clinics that provide medical care on a sliding scale. Learn more about medical programs here.
Educational Assistance: Potential students may qualify for assistance through the Federal Pell Grant program. Additionally, you may qualify for a California National Guard Education Assistance Program if you are an active member of the California National Guard. Additionally, the State of California home page lists several grants and financial assistance programs specifically for residents of the state.
Community Action Centers: The Community Action Centers Project in California has helped over 1.5 million people get financial assistance. Residents can get help finding temporary financial assistance, housing and grant. Additionally, the Community Action Partnership provides education, training and technical assistance for individuals who need help finding work. Residents of California can apply for assistance with applying for financial help.
Charities: Sometimes, money is running short but you may not qualify for financial assistance through government or locally funded programs. There are a lot of charities in California that can help provide temporary or emergency assistance including a Food Pantry and religious charities. To help find the right charity for your situation you can look for charities in California by using the charity navigator.