Money Assistance Maine
According to Poverty USA, the state of Maine has a poverty level of 14 percent. That is a substantial portion of the population living in difficult conditions. Luckily there are numerous non-profits, corporations and the government who provide a great deal of financial assistance. If you experiencing financial hardship and need help paying bills, putting food on the table or other financially stressful situations, there is help. Below is a list of popular assistance programs for residents of Maine.
Assistance with Utilities: Low-income residents can apply for energy assistance through the Energy Assistance Program which offers help for low-income homeowners and renters. The monthly assistance is based on a financial need, though they will accept emergency cases as well. Residents are required to provide proof of financial need. In addition, you may qualify for free weatherization to help use energy more efficiently in your home.
Food Assistance: If you are having a difficult time keeping food on the table, you may be able to receive assistance through the state Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as Food Stamps. The SNAP program provides a monthly stipend to help pay for groceries at participating stores. Pregnant women and women with children may also be able to get help through the Women, Infant and Children Program (WIC) which offers education and food resources. Families with school-aged children can apply for free or reduced lunch through the school district. If you don’t qualify for assistance or need more help, you may receive help through a local Food Pantry.
Loan Help: If you are in need of a loan and can’t get approval through the banks, there are other great options which do not include expensive payday loans. There are numerous banks, credit unions and non-profits that provide low income specialty loans. These loans were specifically created to provide borrowers with a higher borrowing risk profile an affordable loan alternative to expensive micro loans. Learn about these different loans here.
Rent and Mortgage: Residents who need help paying their rent or mortgage may qualify for help through the Maine Housing Department. You can apply for help with your rent or mortgage costs as well as assistance with other housing expenses. In addition, low-income families can get help by applying for Section 8 Housing, a subsidized housing program that provides a safe place to stay at a reduced rate for families who meet financial requirements.
Medical Assistance: Residents who need medical assistance may qualify for help through the state Medicaid program. Medicaid offers free health insurance to low-income families and individuals. The program is income based. If you don’t qualify for coverage and have children in your home you can apply for lower-cost insurance for your kids through the Maine Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). In addition, residents in need can get medical attention at low-cost or free clinics located throughout the state.
Educational Assistance: College students can get help with schooling funds through the Maine Education Services Foundation which offers free planning services. Students can get assistance applying for grants, loans and scholarships. Students may also qualify for free money through the Federal Pell Grant program which gives qualifying full-time students help. Families with small children can apply for help with early-education resources through the Head Start program.
Community Action Centers: If you need additional help with applying for assistance or you need emergency assistance, you can find someone to aid you at your local community action center. Residents can get help applying for assistance programs, finding emergency housing and finding work.
Charities: According to WalletHub, Maine ranked as the 33rd most giving state in the nation in 2014 Although residents give to charity or volunteer less often than individuals in other states, there are still plenty of resources available to those in need including public and private charities like Portland West and Westbrook Housing Authority.