Help for Single Mothers in Idaho: The Definitive Guide

Idaho has an above average unemployment rate of 9.4% as of July 2011, more than the national average of 9.1%. Many low income households and single moms are finding it difficult to make ends meet while jobs are hard to come by. Life gets especially more difficult for single moms looking for financial aid and having to survive on single incomes. Fortunately, help is available. In this article, we will overview some financial aid programs for single moms including food stamps in Idaho, Medicaid insurance coverage, rental assistance from Department of Housing and Urban Development, Childcare assistance and education grants. We will also provide links to where you can apply for these programs and their respective websites. If you are in financial need, be sure to apply to these programs, comply with all instructions given to you including request to attend interviews and most importantly, be positive!

i) Food Stamps for Idaho Families

Idaho Food stamps program is a joint effort of the state and Federal government and provides monthly food benefits to eligible low income families and single moms so they can afford healthy nutritious meals while attending work, school or job training. Once approved, eligible families receive Idaho Quest card that can be redeemed at major supermarkets and grocery stores around the state. Food items that can be purchased include fruits & vegetables, meat, fish & poultry, seeds/plants to grow food. They cannot be used to purchase personal hygiene products, alcohol, tobacco or vitamins. Eligibility requirements include recipients must live in Idaho, be citizens of the US or qualified aliens and not have resources more than $5,000 as of June 2011. Examples of assets include cash, bank accounts, stock or bond holdings, vehicles or real estate. Would you like to determine if you are eligible? Use this pre-screening eligibility tool here http://www.snap-step1.usda.gov/fns/ It will ask you questions such as which state you live in, how many household members, name and status of each member, resources they own, etc. To make a formal application to food stamps in Idaho, visit the Department of Health and Welfare’s website at http://healthandwelfare.idaho.gov/ApplyforAssistance/tabid/1554/Default.aspx

ii) Medicaid Idaho

Medicaid in Idaho is a joint effort of the Idaho state and federal government and pays for essential health services such as doctor visits, prescriptions, x-rays, dental & vision care, immunizations, weight loss, pregnancy and emergency care, etc. Medicaid provides various programs for children under 19 years, pregnant women, people over 65 years, blind/disabled people, etc. Eligibility requirements include beneficiaries must live in Idaho, be citizens of the US or qualified aliens and meet some income criteria. As an example, a family of 3 must NOT have gross income that exceeds $317 to qualify for Medicaid. This essentially disqualifies any family member that has a job because their income would easily exceed the $317 limit. In such a case, the family’s children under 19 years may be eligible for Medicaid State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). SCHIP is specifically designed for those families whose incomes are too high to qualify for Medicaid but that have children under 19 years. The cost for SCHIP might be $10 to $15 per month, depending on income for each child in the family. To request an application form for SCHIP, call 2-1-1 Idaho CareLine. The Idaho department of Health and Welfare has a wealth of knowledge available on its website, be sure to give it a visit below.

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Website: http://healthandwelfare.idaho.gov/

iii) Rental Assistance for Idaho Residents

The Department of Housing and Urban Developments (HUD) offers apartments at reduced rents to low income families and single moms living in the state of Idaho. Eligible families apply directly at the management office of the apartment building they want to live in. Use this tool to find landlords who participate in HUD’s program by visiting http://www.hud.gov/apps/section8/step2.cfm?state=ID,Idaho You can search for apartments using your County, City, Zip code and specify the number of bedrooms you would like.

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