Help for Single Mothers in Florida: The Definitive Guide
Single mothers in Florida have a tough job of raising their kids, providing nutritious meals, medicine & housing for their dependents. However with only a single income, this responsibility becomes much harder. Florida is also a state with one of the highest unemployment rates in the United States, a whopping 12.2%! While single mothers who have a job are facing difficulties in providing the basics to their families, think of those single moms who do NOT have a job and desperately need financial aid for single moms. Fortunately in this article, we will overview the food stamps, housing & childcare assistance programs for single mothers.
i) Florida Food Stamps
Food assistance program in Florida helps low income families & single moms provide nutritious meals for their dependents. The dollar value of food benefits that a family can receive depends on the # of people in the family, monthly gross income, and what’s left over after expenses such as rent, utilities, etc are deducted. Eligible families must not have assets exceeding $2,000 or $3,000 for those with a disabled member in the family to be eligible for food stamp benefits.
As a general rule of thumb, most households must pass a gross income limit at 200% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). As an example, a household with 2 people should not have income exceeding $2,622 to be eligible for food stamp benefits. A complete income requirements chart can be downloaded by visiting this PDF file here on page 3 https://www.dcf.state.fl.us/programs/access/docs/fafactsheet.pdf
With food stamp benefits, needy families can purchase breads & cereals, fruits & vegetables, meat, fish & poultry, dairy products & seeds/plants to grow their own food. Be aware that households cannot buy items of alcohol, cigarettes, tobacco, wine, beer, pet food, soap & paper products, vitamins or other medicines.
ii) Florida Medicaid Program
The Florida Medicaid programs offers health benefits to low income & needy families who would otherwise not be able to afford healthcare. Benefits under the Medicaid program are officially administered by the Agency for Health Care Administration. Approved families are given Permanent gold Medicaid card that are presented to any hospital or clinic facility to pay for the cost of health care. Single moms who exceed the income requirements limit for the Medicaid program may still be eligible to receive partial health care benefits under Medicaid under a program called Medically Needy program. Under this program, individuals must have certain amount of medical bills each month that they are not able to repay.
Applications for Medicaid & food stamps program in Florida can be made online by visiting this link http://www.myflorida.com/accessflorida The service is very neat as it lets you view your benefit status, apply for additional benefits, view the funds in your Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) Account & lots more.
iii) Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA)
This office under the department of Education in Florida administers many grants, scholarships & financial aid for students from all walks of life; singles, widowed to single moms. The department offers many different grants & scholarships, some notable ones we saw on their website are:
- Access to Better Learning and Education Grant Program
- Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program
- Florida Resident Access Grant Program
- Florida Student Assistance Grant Program
Full list of grants & scholarships can be viewed here http://www.floridastudentfinancialaid.org/
These grants are offered as help for paying tuition fees, books & other university related expenses. Generally to be eligible to apply, students must already be enrolled in an approved college or university in an undergraduate program in the state of Florida. Other rules include:
- Students must take a minimum of 12 credit hours (4 courses) each term
- Not be in default of a previous student loan or grant repayment
- Meet Florida’s general eligibility requirements for receipt of state aid
- Be a US citizen
Be sure to visit the website below for an ocean load of good information.