Single parents around the world face the same issues. But there is help out there, at least for some of the problems.
It’s amazing how when there is only one income stream in a family, it never seems to be large enough to cover everything. From rent to school lunch money, it’s a challenge to make sure that your dollars make it to the end of the month.
We have compiled a list of grants that could possibly offer a helping hand. Grants are money given for a specific purpose, that so long as they are used properly, never have to be paid back. Most of the information below is for federal grants, but keep in mind that each state has their own grant making mandate.
To find out about grants in your area click the link. https://www.tgci.com/funding-sources
1. Section 8 Housing
Safe housing isn’t always easy to afford. So the government has set aside money specifically to help families afford suitable homes. With this grant you can choose where you live. They help you by paying 70% of your rental and utility bills.
Qualifying criteria: To apply you would have to approach your local Public Housing Agency (PHA). The PHA will take a few things into account; the size of the family and the level of income (which mustn’t exceed 50% of the median income of the community). They will use this information to determine how much funding you will receive. This grant is given based on need, so the neediest families and individual will be helped first.
Go here to find out more: http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/topics/housing_choice_voucher_program_section_8
2. ADDI (American Dream Down Payment Initiative)
Buying your own home can be difficult and costly. Helping out with those costs is what this grant was designed for. This program will pay either the down payment or the closing costs, or both for the lucky awardee. With this funding you can buy a house, condominium, co-operative unit or a manufactured home.
Qualifying criteria: To be eligible you must be a first time home buyer whose income doesn’t exceed 80% of the median income of the area.
3. WIC (Women, Infants and Children)
Also called The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children. This is a Federal program aimed at helping pregnant women and mothers whose children are under the age of five years, afford healthy nutritious foods for themselves and their children. It also provides education regarding nutrition and breastfeeding.
Qualifying criteria: this program is only for women who are pregnant, breastfeeding or have children under the age of 5 years. They also have to be at risk of suffering from malnutrition. The woman’s income needs to be less than 185% of the poverty line.
Go here to find out more: http://www.fns.usda.gov/wic/women-infants-and-children-wic
4. SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
Federal funds are given to each state to help them help low income families to have access to good food.
Qualifying criteria: The state will use is a formula to determine how much assistance each applicant needs. They also offer access to nutrition educators, community organizations and state agencies to help you better understand the importance of a proper diet.
Go here to find out more: http://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-snap
This program works together with CHIP (below) to provide low cost or free health care for low income earners. Each state can generate its own program depending on the needs it has determined. Each state does have to offer certain mandatory benefits but others are optional and can be added in depending on the area’s specific needs.
Qualifying criteria: This is for low income earners and the minimum eligibility level is 133% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). To find out more about this program follow the link below. The information is on the right hand side of the webpage and you can click on the enrolment info there.
Go here to find out more: https://www.medicaid.gov/medicaid-chip-program-information/medicaid-and-chip-program-information.html
6. CHIP (Children Health Insurance Program)
This program is designed to help children from impoverished families to still receive the medical care they need. States can create their own packages determined by need, but must include mental health care, dental care, diagnostic and treatment services as well as periodic screening.
Qualifying criteria: CHIP has been designed to bridge the gap between Medicaid and health insurance by granting coverage to children under 19 years of age who aren’t insured. For a full description of their services and to apply please follow the link.
Go here to find out more: https://www.medicaid.gov/chip/chip-program-information.html
7. Food Bank Assistance
Affording food for your family is always a concern. Luckily there are many programs that can help with this. There are food banks across America that offer food to those in need. On their website you will find information about how they work, how to contact them and how to find a Food Bank near you.
Go here to find out more: feedingamerica.org
8. NSLP (National School Lunch Program)
Sometimes it’s just not possible to give your child money for lunch. With prices only ever raising your paycheck can only stretch so far. That’s where this program comes into effect. NSLP helps parents to afford school lunch for their children. This isn’t a grant as such, it’s aid. If awarded the child will only be able to buy lunch at school for the price awarded.
Go here to find out more: http://frac.org/federal-foodnutrition-programs/national-school-lunch-program/
9. CCAP (Child Care Assistance Program)
This program helps low income families afford child care. A portion of the day care fee charged for looking after the child is subsidized. The amount differs in each case as the costs of all the participating centers aren’t the same. This is a state run initiative and can be accessed through the CCAP site for your area.
10. CCDF (Child Care Development Fund)
This program helps to fund child care centers and after school programs in impoverished areas to help parents find good, affordable child care. They also help individuals looking for assistance affording child care. To qualify the individual has to prove financial need. Child care centers need to provide a proposal showing how the grant money will be used to improve their facilities.
Go here to find out more: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/occ/resource/child-care-and-development-fund
11. TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families)
This grant is temporary financial aid for families in need. So the Federal government supplies each state with a block grant that they then use to help families in their state. Each state has their own criteria to determine which families will receive the financial aid. The basic requirements are that the applicants must have dependent children, or be in their last three months of pregnancy and must live in the United States. The aim of this grant is to help families become financially self-sufficient, so it’s not welfare but more like a cash injection when something unforeseen and unavoidable happens. They also offer aid in the form job training, counselling, education and emergency funding.
Go here to find out more: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ofa/programs/tanf/about
12. LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program)
Utility bills are always higher than you expect or budget for. The costs can often spike dramatically leaving people wondering what happened to cause this. Of course this creates an added financial strain for low and moderate income earners which can lead to bills not being paid.
LIHEAP has been designed to help in this instance by reducing the burden of paying for heating, cooling or electricity. This money is flexible and can be used for home repairs if they will help to decrease the family’s energy costs. The amount of money given to an individual depends on their financial need.
Go here to find out more: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ocs/programs/liheap
13. WAP (Weatherization Assistance Program)
WAP is a similar program where the federal government provides grants to states, territories, and some Indian tribes allowing them to help low income families in their areas with weatherization.
Go here to find out more: http://energy.gov/eere/wipo/weatherization-assistance-program
14. PeaChic Grant
Owning your own business can lead to financial freedom, or total ruin. And it’s a fine line between the two. With this in mind PeaChic is a grant program that helps women running their own businesses. or businesses that specifically focus on women. The funds from these grants are typically small and are intended to cover expenses like creating a web presence or marketing the business.
Go here to find out more: http://www.grantsalert.com/grant/110/peachic-grants
15. Title X Family Planning
Pronounced “Title Ten” this program offers family planning and related health services to low income families. Through this program family planning clinics receive funds to help low income women receive health care at reduced rates or for free. Their services include, breast and pelvic exams, Pap smears and cancer screenings, pregnancy testing, HIV testing, counseling and birth control.
Go here to find out more: www.hhs.gov/opa/title-x-family-planning
16. TEFAP (The Emergency Food Assistance Program)
This is the Federal program that distributes food to needy Americans as well as Food banks, Pantries and Soup kitchens. To be eligible for this program you have to be enrolled in TANF or SNAP, where they use your income to determine eligibility.
Go here to find out more: www.fns.usda.gov/tefap/emergency-food-assistance-program-tefap
17. NASE Growth Grants (National Association for the Self-employed)
This is a grant program for members of NASE. These are not Federal but rather private grants and so are only available to NASE members. The grants are small, around $4000 and are designed to help small businesses grow. To become a member or to see if that is something you may be interested in, take a look at their website. There is no mention of having to pay for membership on their landing page, but it might be somewhere in there.
Go here to find out more: https://www.nase.org/become-a-member/grants-and-scholarships/BusinessDevelopmentGrants.aspx
18. WIA (Workforce Investment Act)
These state run programs are Federally funded and are designed to help individuals who want to enter the workforce but aren’t really equipped to do so. These programs offer training classes and job search tools.
Qualifying criteria: To qualify you have to be one of the following: a laid off worker who won’t be returning to the same industry you left, or a displaced homemaker, or a person who was self-employed.
Go here to find out more: http://www.doleta.gov/programs/general_info.cfm
19. TEACH grant
The US desperately needs teachers in some areas. So to fill the gap the government has created this grant to help individuals who want to study to become teachers. If you apply you must be willing to adhere to some very strict stipulations, or the grant will become a loan that will have to be paid back. Once you have graduated you must agree to teach in a high need field in an elementary, secondary or educational service for low income families for the first four years after completing the program.
Go here to find out more: http://studentaid.ed.gov/types/grnts-scholarships/teach
20. AAUW (American Association of University Women)
The AAUW have a lot of fellowships and scholarships available to women. They have Career Development grants designed to help women in their careers, or to help them re-enter the workforce.
For more information follow the link: http://www.aauw.org
21. FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)
Once you have submitted your application you stand a chance to be awarded one of the following two grants:
22. FSEOG (Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant)
Is a grant given to colleges and universities to help students, who meet certain criteria, fund their studies. Each institution is allowed to determine the exact criteria for choosing awardees for themselves. Each institution has their own information on their programs on their website and many of them have special programs for single parents who are students. The information is generally under the Admissions tab. There is usually a tab under that called Financial Aid and that is where you’ll find out about their programs. You can simply click through the options.
Go here to find out more: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/fseog/index.html
23. The PELL Grant
Pell Grant is designed to aid students with their tuition fees as well as other sundry study related expenses. This grant lasts until graduation.
For more information follow the link: https://fafsa.ed.gov
24. Walmart Grants
Walmart is a company that likes to give back as do many. But where many companies don’t list the specific programs that their funds go to Walmart does. They donate to Mobile Pantries and to Dress for Success to name but two.
25. Mobile Pantries
Take food into areas of high need.
Go here to find out more: www.feedingamerica.org
26. Dress for Success
Helps women who need to enter the workforce with job skills training, search tools and clothing to wear to interviews to make a good first impression.
Go here to find out more: www.dressforsuccess.org