Government benefits exist to help those in their time of need. Whether it’s a loss of income, sudden illness or life changing event, there are many situations that may occur when someone needs help to get by. Though there can be plenty of debate regarding the use and distribution of government benefits, there is no question that many people have been helped through the programs available in the United States. For many nationwide, knowing how to find and apply for benefits can be trickier than realizing you need them. There is often a lot of bureaucratic tape that must be cut in order to get the services required. By knowing how to find and apply for government benefits, you can avoid unnecessary delays and get required services in a timely manner.
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Your first place to find government benefits is the official website Benefits.gov. When you access the site there will be an option to set or change your location. The website should automatically determine your location and will then display a box of the most popular benefits in your state. This isn’t the only way to find benefits, however. The site contains an interactive tool called the benefit finder. You can click on that box in order to start a process of questions and answers to help you zero in on the benefits you need. You can also click on the state or category options from the front page and look for applicable benefits to apply for that way. Benefit categories include things like child care and child support, education, health related issues, housing, energy assistance, food, housing and more. For those who feel a bit confused about where to start, choosing the categories option might be best.
Zika prevention kits are available to pregnant women at family planning centers, WIC programs in the target region. pic.twitter.com/jNaZXzIzBP
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) August 2, 2016
You can also search for government benefits by choosing agency. Agency breaks down how many programs or even grants are available under a certain branch or government division. If you are looking for a specific benefit, you might find that searching by category or state is your best choice. Those who want to apply for Social Security Benefits can use the SSA Benefit Eligibility Screening Tool. This isn’t an application tool, but rather the screening tool lets you know if you qualify for social security benefits. There are more than 1,000 programs at the official Benefits.gov site that you may apply for.
While you can apply for disaster related programs on Benefits.gov, the best way is to go directly to the disaster assistance website and apply there. This site is different from the official FEMA website and will help determine what programs you might qualify for. DisasterAssistance.gov is a one-stop resource where you can apply for multiple programs by category and need. When someone has been in a disaster, they are often extremely distraught and might not have the resources to search through different websites. By using the official disaster assistance site, those who’ve been in a recent emergency can save time by locating the best program or programs for their personal situation. There is an enormous amount of information at the website with links to numerous organizations. You can also find information for businesses and communities at the extended disaster assistance site.
The Food and Nutrition category enables users to browse through various programs offered in each state. This is a more efficient way of applying for benefits, as many people are simply unaware of the programs available. Some states offer more programs than others. Popular food programs include WIC, food stamps, milk programs, and school breakfast and lunch programs. There are also community nutrition programs and food programs for children in the summer. Some states offer grants for starting Farmers Markets.
If you’re in need of help, do not hesitate to browse Benefits.gov and determine what government programs are available to help you in your time of need. There are more than 1,000 programs available. Apply today.
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