Federal and state governments have a wide range of grants that single moms can apply for that help pay for school, childcare, food, and housing. As a single parent, making use of these government programs will help you to provide a safe and secure home for your children, so make sure that you are getting as much assistance as you can. There are several ways to find and apply for these grants, and the application process is often easier than you may think.
Many cash assistance grants, like WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) and TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families), require you to do an in-person interview as part of the application process. You will need to schedule an appointment and ensure that you gather all the proper documentation for your application. In some cases, you may have to appear more than once before your grant is approved. While you may be nervous or apprehensive about going to a government office to apply, remember that these programs exist to help people in your situation. The job of the people working in these offices is to help you get the help you need for you and your children.
Some grants, such as FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) can be filled out completely online. You will still need to have the right documentation on-hand to complete the application process. This includes tax returns, bank account information, and information about the school you hope to attend. You won’t get immediate results for your application, but you will get an email a few weeks after you apply that instructs you on the next steps in the process. Other benefits, such as unemployment, can be applied for online in certain situations. Be sure to print out any completed documents while filling out applications online so that you have proof of your application.
It can be difficult to know which grants and government programs are available to you. The government has set up a website that allows you to search for grants and other programs you might qualify for, and you only need to answer a few simple questions to find programs and grants in your area. There are programs available for cash, food, and energy assistance, education grants, housing and healthcare assistance and much more. Simple fill out the questionnaire, and you will receive information about which programs and grants you may qualify for, along with information on the next step in the application process. The website searches for both federal and state programs.
Local GrantsYou may be able to apply for grants through your local city or village offices. Many municipalities offer special programs for single parents and low-income families. You can apply for many of these programs by stopping by city hall to fill out some paperwork. Typically, you can find out about these programs by doing a quick search of your town’s website. Common grants include energy assistance, daycare assistance, and help with mortgage and rent payments.
Grants through Churches and Religious Institutions
While church groups don’t always refer to their cash assistance programs as grants, there are many church-run programs that you might be able to benefit from. There are many programs for housing assistance, food assistance, and daycare subsidies offered through religious groups. If your church has a website, you can look for information there, or you can talk to your pastor, priest, or church administrator to see if there is a program for you. Of course, you don’t have to be a member of a church to qualify for help. Catholic Charities provides many different forms of assistance for people of all backgrounds.
No matter what types of grants you apply for, you will need to have some sort of documentation. This could include paystubs, bank statements, tax returns, lists of expenses, birth certificates, and social security cards. When you fill out the applications, you should typically receive a list of the proper paperwork. If you don’t have everything on-hand, there are ways that you can get copies. You can request birth certificates and social security cards in person at the proper government office. You can also request these documents through the mail, and some paperwork can be ordered online. There are usually fees associated with copies of your paperwork, so be sure to keep your receipts for any costs you incur as you apply for your grants. If you aren’t sure about what documentation you need or where to locate copies, you can ask a caseworker for the grant you are applying for, or call the grant program’s assistance number to ask for assistance.
Regardless of the type of grant you apply for or how you apply, you’ll need to have a strong sense of determination and some thick skin. You may be turned down for your initial grant application, but that doesn’t mean that you should give up. There are hundreds of government programs and agencies that have help available for single moms and low-income families. In order to give your family the tools it needs for success, you must be willing to keep trying even if you are turned down. If you don’t qualify for one grant, continue looking until you find one that you can get. Chances are, no matter what you financial situation is, there is at least one grant out there that can help your family get a helping hand.
Grants give you the chance to make your income stretch a little bit further every month. Each dollar that you don’t have to use for food, electricity, or childcare can be used to pay for other necessities. Take some time to review the different grants that you may be eligible for to see which ones are the right fit. As a single mom, you have to make do with the resources you have available to you; make sure you know what those resources are so that you can give your children everything they need to be safe, secure, and healthy.