Assistance Programs In the State of Kentucky
The state of Kentucky has a population of 4.4 million with a poverty rate of 19.1%. The poverty rate is even higher in children at 25%. This means many people in Kentucky struggle financially, and have a hard time paying for expenses and providing everything that is needed for their families and children. Fortunately the state of Kentucky has numerous assistance programs available for the low income residents of the state. This guide will list and explain the available assistance programs in Kentucky.
Financial Assistance in Kentucky
It can be difficult finding actual financial help, however if you are of very low income there is a program available as seen below.
Kentucky Transitional Assistance Program (TAP)
The TAP program is the Kentucky monetary assistance program which provides financial and medical assistance to the needy and low income families of Kentucky. This program also provides job training and helps parents find a suitable job.
In order to be eligible for this program you must have a child under the age of 19 living in your household, be a resident of Kentucky and be of low income, meeting the income requirements. To learn more and to apply for this program check out the Kentucky TAP webpage.
Kentucky Unemployment Insurance
This program provides temporary financial assistance to those who have lost their job through no fault of their own in Kentucky. The amount you will receive depends largely on the amount you made with your most previous employer.
To be eligible for this program must have worked in Kentucky within the last 12-18 months and be available and looking for work in each week your are receiving the benefits. To learn more and to apply check out the Kentucky Unemployment service website.
Food Assistance in Kentucky
No one should have to go without food or skip meals because they cannot afford adequate foods. Fortunately there are numerous programs available to help the low income.
Kentucky Food Benefits
The Kentucky Food Benefits Program assists low income single parents, families and individuals with purchasing the necessary and nutritional foods that are needed on a daily basis. The benefits are received in the form of an Electronic Benefits Card (EBT) that is used when purchasing for the foods at the checkout. Each month the card will be reloaded with more funds to continue purchasing foods.
To be eligible for this program you must be a legal resident of Kentucky and meet the income requirements. The number of people living in the household along with the annual income is used to decide if and how much you will receive for your food benefits. Check out the Kentucky Food Benefits webpage to learn more and to apply.
Kentucky Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
This program provides healthy foods, nutrition advice and health care assistance referrals to pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum mothers and their children from ages 0-5. In order to be eligible for this program the mother/children have to be deemed a nutritional risk by a health care provider. Furthermore, you must meet the income requirements.
Kentucky School Breakfast and Lunch Program
This program provides free or low cost breakfasts’ and lunches to children of low income families in Kentucky. Your income level is the main factor that depends on whether or not the meals are free or require a small fee. In order to be eligible for this program you must meet the income requirements.To apply for this program you must contact the school that your child currently attends.
Medical Assistance In Kentucky
Medical costs are sky high so it is important for the low income to receive medical assistance, which the state of Kentucky offers.
Kentucky Medical Program (KMP)
The Kentucky Medical Program provides health and medical assistance to low income single parents, families and individuals. KMP provides free health care and services to qualifying Kentucky residents in a variety of areas such as:
- doctor’s visits
- prescription drugs
- lab tests and X-rays ordered by doctors
- hospital care
- eye care
- dental care
Depending on you and your family’s specific situation, not all services will necessarily be covered, or some services might require co-pay. In order to qualify for KMP you must be a legal resident of Kentucky, and meet the income requirements. Eligibility for Medicaid is strongly based on your income levels in relation to your age, if you have children etc. To take a look at the income requirements and to apply check out the Kentucky KMP webpage.
Kentucky Children’s Health Insurance Program (KCHIP)
The KCHIP program is primarily the KMP program for the children of Kentucky. This program offers all the same free health care services listed above.
In order to be eligible for this program you must have a child under the age of 19 living in your household, or be the primary caregiver of a child, and be considered low income. The income levels required for you child to receive CHIP are lower then the income levels required for adults, making it significantly easier for children to qualify. To take a look at the income levels and to learn more/apply check out the Kentucky KCHIP webpage.
Medicaid Expansion – Affordable Care Act
Fortunately, Kentucky is one of the states that have adopted the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obama Care. The Affordable Care Act makes it easier for residents of Kentucky to qualify for Medicaid, as the income levels required to qualify are lower. To learn more about the Affordable Care Act, check out this Obamacare webpage.
Child Care Assistance in Kentucky
Child care costs thousands of dollars a year making it difficult for single parents and low income families to afford proper child care. Many times one of the parents are unable to work because they have to stay home and care for the child. Fortunately there are some child care assistance programs available.
Kentucky Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP)
This program helps Kentucky parents pay for child care costs, and helps obtain affordable child care.The great thing about this program is it gives the parents flexibility in choosing the type of child care their children receive. To qualify for this program you must be considered of low income. To learn more and to apply check out the state of Kentucky child care assistance webpage.
Kentucky Head Start Program
This program will provide a learning environment for children ages 0-5 to help enhance their emotional, cognitive, and social development. This program is only available to low income families.
To check out the income requirements and to learn more check out the Kentucky Head Start webpage.
Housing Assistance In Kentucky
The State of Kentucky has a variety of rental assistance plans available to the low income single parents and families who struggle with their rent payments.
Kentucky Low Income Public Housing Program
This program will allow residents across Kentucky to receive reduced rent payments in homes owned by the local Public Housing Agencies in your area of the state, whether it be an apartment, single standing house, or condos. The State of Kentucky provides funding to local Public Housing Agencies (PHAs).These local housing agencies will then use these funds to provide the low income families or single parents safe and sanitary housing with rent payments that they can afford to pay. The eligibility for these programs is based on income limits set by Kentucky administration and the amount of funding available.
To begin the application process, you must go through your local Housing Agency. This list of Kentucky Public Housing Agencies provides an in depth list of all the Housing Agencies located across Kentucky. Once you find the Housing Agency in your area, you can contact them to find out the specific income guidelines required, as well as any details or questions you might have about the program.
It is important to note that some Public Housing Agencies have a waiting list, so it is a good idea to apply with more then one Housing Agency.
Kentucky Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8)
The Kentucky Housing Choice Voucher program is very similar to the Low Income Public Housing Program as your local Housing Agency will guide you throughout the entire process. This program also provides rental assistance to low income single parents and families by providing families with ‘vouchers’ or rental rebates that will allow you to only have to pay a portion of their rent costs. This program allows you to choose your own living place rather then live in a pre determined living space in the low income public housing program. This program provides direct payments to your landlord, which pays a good portion of your rent payment with you paying the remaining portion of the rent. Many times you will only have to pay 30% to 40% of your total rent payment.
Kentucky Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program
This program provides financial assistance to Kentucky residents by paying a portion of their energy bills, primarily helping with heating and cooling bills. To apply for this program you must be considered low income and meet the income requirements.
If you are receiving other assistance such as SNAP and the Kentucky Transitional Assistance Plan then you can automatically be eligible for this program. To take a look at the income levels required click here. To learn more and to apply check out the Kentucky Home Energy Assistance webpage.
Kentucky Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP)
This program helps to reduce the amount of energy your home will use, making your home more energy efficient, which results in lower energy bills. To qualify for this program you must be a resident of Kentucky and meet the low income requirements. To learn more and to apply check out the Kentucky WAP page.
Kentucky First Time Homebuyers Programs
The state of Kentucky has a variety of programs available for those purchasing their first home. These programs assist with your down payments, decreasing the amount you have to put down to receive a mortgage. These programs also help to find the lowest interest rates possible.
Kentucky has two Down Payment Assistance (DAP) programs available, one called the Regular DAP, and the other the Affordable DAP. To learn more about these programs check out the Kentucky Housing Corporation webpage on first time home buyer programs.
Transportation Assistance In Kentucky
Taxis can be very expensive, you can use cheaper alternatives as well as receive free medical rides.
Kentucky Medical Transportation
Kentucky has a variety of medical transportation services that will drive you to your doctor’s appointments, medical treatments and more. To use these free services you must be receiving assistance under the Kentucky Medical Program (KMP) or the Kentucky Child Health Insurance Program (KCHIP). To locate the free transportation services in your area of the state check out the Kentucky transportation providers webpage.
Taxi fares can be really high making transportation to expensive for many. Using Uber or Lyft offers a more affordable option, as individuals drive people where they need to be in their own cares. You can save a lot of money using Uber or Lyft over taxis, so keep this in mind.
Legal Assistance in Kentucky
Obtaining proper legal assistance and advice is very expensive making it next to impossible for the low income or anyone in general to receive legal help. Fortunately you can find legal assistance in Kentucky.
Legal Aid Network of Kentucky
The Kentucky Legal Aid Network helps people locate free and discounted legal services available throughout the state in a variety of subjects. Most of the legal services provided helps with issues such as, domestic violence, immigration issues, employment issues, evictions, family law and much more. To be eligible for many of these services you must be considered low income, however not all require you to be low income. To learn more check out the Kentucky Legal Aid Network website.
You can also check out this legal assistance database which helps you locate legal assistance in your specific area of Kentucky.
The State of Kentucky is very efficient at providing and helping it’s citizens with assistance programs in a variety of areas as you can see in this guide. When tough times hit remember there is usually a good source of free assistance that can help you get the help you need.
Links and Resources
Find Local State Assistance Financial Help Programs for Single Mothers
Click on any one of the states below on the map (or via the table) to go to our local state assistance guide for that specific state