Being a single mom is no easy task, especially when those bills start coming in. You may find that you are struggling to make ends meet and provide for your children. The following programs can help you find a way to make ends meet and work toward a better life for your children.
TAFDC (Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children)
If you are struggling to make ends meet during a short term situation, such as going to school or working an internship, TAFDC can help. This program allows you to have a monthly stipend that will help you pay your bills and meet the needs of your children.
In order to be eligible for TAFDC assistance you must meet certain income requirements to show that you are in need of the program. You must have limited assets and you must be pregnant or caring for a dependent child. To find out if you may be eligible and how to apply visit http://www.massresources.org/tafdc.html.
If you are approved your TAFDC funds will be deposited twice monthly into a bank account or onto an electronic benefit transfer card. These cards allow you to withdraw cash at ATMs and grocery stores. The amount of money that you receive is decided based upon your monthly income and the number of people in your household.
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
This program is geared toward reducing the financial burden of regular groceries. If you are having a hard time buying enough food to feed your family then you may qualify for SNAP, and it can be a great resource to ensure that you and your children are healthy.
To be eligible for SNAP in Massachusetts you must meet certain income requirements. These requirements are often determined based on your family’s assets, the monthly income and the number of people in your household. To find out if you are eligible and to apply for SNAP please visit https://service.hhs.state.ma.us/ierhome/LandingPage.do?method=displayConsumerHomePage&pageSwitch=HOME.
SNAP benefits are delivered every month to an Electronic Benefit Transfer card which can then be used at nearly any grocery store to purchase food. There are few limits on what you can purchase with the money, allowing you to buy whatever your family normally enjoys.
MassHealth is a combination of Medicaid and the CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program), which makes it easy to apply and see what health care program your children are eligible for. Often children who are not eligible for Medicaid are then eligible for CHIP ensuring that your children have access to quality healthcare.
In order to be eligible for MassHealth you must meet certain income requirements. You must be considered low to median income and you must meet other financial requirements. To find out if you are eligible and to learn more about MassHealth visit http://www.massresources.org/masshealth-eligibility-check.html.
MassHealth offers comprehensive health care to children and adults. If you do not qualify for Medicaid, your children can still benefit from CHIP. CHIP offers complete and comprehensive healthcare for your children which ensures that you will never have to worry about paying for immunizations, doctor’s visits ore prescriptions. The is one of the most important programs on offer because it protects the health of your children and will take care of the medical bill in an emergency.
Fuel Assistance Program
If you are having trouble making ends meet in the winter then you may be afraid that you will not be able to pay to heat your home. This is when the Fuel Assistance program comes to the rescue. It operates between November 1st and April 31st and it provide you with funds to help pay to heat your home. If utilities are included in your rent, the Fuel Assistance program may pay a portion of your rent. To learn more and to apply check out the Fuel Assistance Brochure here http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/docs/dta/c-dta-fuelassist.pdf.
WIC (Women, Infants and Children)
If you are nursing mother, pregnant or have children under the age of 5 you can apply for WIC. This program is dedicated to ensuring that your children have access to a diet that provides them with adequate nutrition.
In order to qualify for WIC you must meet a certain income requirement that is based upon your yearly salary and the number of people in your household. To find out more about WIC and how to apply visit http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/consumer/basic-needs/food/wic/.
The WIC program provides food allotments that allow for you to purchase food items for your children as long as they meet certain nutritional requirements. They also offer breastfeeding support, nutrition counseling, refers to healthcare providers, and they help with formula expenses for infants that are not breastfeeding. The program can even provide immunizations for children to ensure that they are in the beast health throughout their early life.
If you are having trouble paying rent or have already received an eviction notice, then you may be eligible for rental assistance in Massachusetts. The program allows for you to receive vouchers that can be used to help pay for rent. They can be used for nearly any rental property and are not limited to subsidized apartment complexes. Eligibility is based upon income, number of people in your household and need. There is often a waiting list, so is best to apply as soon as you feel that you may be in need to ensure that you get the benefits when you need them. To find out about rental assistance and how to apply visit http://www.hud.gov/local/index.cfm?state=ma&topic=renting.
These programs are just the beginning to the opportunities available to single mothers in need. However, it is important to remember that most of these programs are only temporary and they are geared toward helping you become self-sufficient. If you choose to take advantage of these programs, it is important that you use the time and money to work toward improving your situation for the future and spending time with your children. There are plenty of organizations that are willing to help single mothers in need.
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