Don’t Suffer In Silence — Financial Help Is Available
(RepublicanNews.org) – It’s easy to feel financially overwhelmed in today’s economy. With wages down and inflation up, everyone has to cut corners. If you’re already low-income, no doubt you’re feeling this especially strongly. Per the American Psychological Association (APA), most people are stressed about money: 72 percent of Americans experience major money stress at one or more points in their lives. Add a pandemic into the mix, and it makes sense that many feel that this is completely unbearable.
You might be stressed about money due to job loss, sudden emergency expenses, uncertainty about income, rent increases, and other unpredictable circumstances. If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone, and there are programs out there to assist you in times of financial hardship.
Use These Government Assistance Tools for Financial Assistance
Many people encounter the type of financial hardship you are currently experiencing. There are many programs available, but sorting through them on your own and determining the amount of qualifications that fit your situation can be hard. Fortunately, Benefits.gov is here to mitigate that challenge. This website is the central location for financial assistance benefits in the United States. This tool allows you to browse benefits, or use the specific Benefits Finder function.
Browsing benefits via Benefits.gov is recommended for you if you already know the type of assistance you’re looking for. You can check out different programs by agency or category. By browsing, you will find:
- Social security
- Military assistance (veterans or active duty)
- Disaster relief
- Training and education
- Financial assistance
- Family / children’s services
- Nutrition and food
- Refugee and immigration help
What Benefits Will You Qualify For?
The type of benefits you can get depends on what you need help with, your family size, your income, and some other qualifying factors. Here are some common government assistance programs:
- Unemployment Assistance: If you’ve ever experienced a layoff, you know how devastating that can be. Apply for unemployment ASAP to reduce a delay in income.
- Child Tax Credit: For every child under the age of 17, you may receive a $1,000 tax deduction.
- Disaster Relief Loans: If your business sustained damage during a disaster, the Small Business Association (SBA) may be able to help. Most businesses may apply for loans in this situation.
- Medicaid Program: While any low-income person can apply, this one is particularly helpful for pregnant people, disabled people, senior citizens, and children. The federal, state, and county governments contribute to Medicaid and it varies heavily by location.
- Food Stamp Program (SNAP): If you’re a low-income family struggling with the rising cost of food, food stamps can help. The amount you could receive varies based on income and household size, but this is a critical program for many American families in need of help.
- Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): Managing heating and cooling costs in the winter and summer, respectively, can really strain any household budget. LIHEAP exists to provide relief for families that struggle to pay these costs. They also see this as a public safety benefit as it reduces health and safety problems.
If you’re experiencing a difficult financial time, don’t wait for things to get worse. Help is available to you through federal, state, and local county resources. Your local librarians and social workers can be especially helpful in assisting you when it comes to navigating the overwhelming amount of programs on Benefits.gov. If you need assistance in applying, it helps to have basic information about your family: what county you live in, income, last date of employment (in the event of job loss), and anything else that would pertain to the type of benefits you need.
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