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Missouri public assistance.

Public assistance is offered to low income families and individuals in Missouri. Several programs provide the services and resources that people need to make it through a difficult period. Find how to get financial help from public or government funds for paying bills and basic needs by county below. Agencies also provide information on how residents can improve their overall financial condition.

Missouri Temporary Assistance Program can offer cash assistance to families with children. The main objective is to offer public funds and to these families so that the children can be cared for in their own home. Another goal is to lower a families overall dependency on public aid by promoting employment, job preparation, work and marriage. Funds and grants may also be used to prevent non-marital pregnancies and encourage the formation and maintenance of self-sufficient two-parent families. Learn more on Missouri cash assistance TA program as well as the FSD centers that operate it.

Some of the key terms and criteria of Temporary Assistance (TA) include the following. In order to get cash assistance from the Department of Social Services, recipients of the program must be currently working or in training/work type activities (such as employment, job training, subsidized, job search and job readiness assistance, etc.). They need to be doing this after at most two years of receiving assistance. Read more on welfare and applying for TANF across the nation.

Many families on TANF (cash aid) is Missouri also can get financial aid from the government in paying for their cell phone bill or home phone. Lifeline and Link-Up are the main programs, as well as a free cell phone service from telecommunication provers. All companies participate, and learn more on Missouri Lifeline.

Missouri HealthNet for Kids - This program provides public healthcare coverage for children less than 19 years of age whose total family income falls within certain parameters. The state will help pay for medical and dental needs of low to moderate income children.

MO HealthNet for Pregnant Women and Newborns - Similar to the kids program above, however this is the state’s MO HealthNet program for newborns and pregnant women. This medical care program provides healthcare and medical coverage that is paid for by public funds including sixty-day postpartum coverage. Aid is offered for pregnant women that meet income guidelines. Once determined to be eligible, the coverage continues through the client’s postpartum period despite subsequent increases in income.




Some other notes on this service and people who can get help include children that are born to a woman eligible for and receiving MO HealthNet and/or the MO HealthNet for Pregnant Women. Families that are involved in these health insurance coverage plans on the date of the infant’s birth continue to be eligible for MO HealthNet coverage throughout the first year of life as long as the child remains in the mother’s home and maintains Missouri residence.

MO HealthNet for Families (MHF) - Entire families may receive public health care and services from this program. Families whose income does not exceed the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) income standards may qualify.

Uninsured Women's Health Services Program - MO HealthNet coverage is offered for uninsured women ages 18 up to age 55 whose total net family income does not exceed 185% of the federal government poverty level when factoring in their household size.

Food assistance, meals, and groceries can be provided from the Food Stamp Program / Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). This government mandated public assistance program that is run by the Missouri Department of Social Services was created to promote the general welfare and safeguard the health and well-being of the nation’s low income and senior population by raising the levels of nutrition among low-income households. The program formally goes by the name of the Food Stamp Program in Missouri. Recipients of the program will need to use a debit card known as the Missouri Electronic Benefit Transfer card in order to purchase food at their grocery stores.

Missouri Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) can help people in two different ways. There are two primary parts of this program. The first is the Crisis Intervention Program (ECIP) and the second is the Energy Assistance/Regular Heating (EA). While both are focused on paying heating bills, there may be some funds for extreme summer heat conditions. Learn more on LIHEAP in Missouri.





The regular portion known as EA was created to provide cash grants and financial assistance to help pay regular monthly electric and heating bills. Public assistance and funds are paid out in the months of October, November, December, January, February, and March. Applicants will need to meet certain conditions including income, available resources, family size, and responsibility for payment of home heating costs.

If someone applies and they are found to be eligible for EA then that may also qualify individuals for additional financial assistance through the crisis component, which will offer financial aid when someone is faced with a disconnection or it may help when they are low on fuel or heating oil.

Assistance for child care costs is available. Most of the funding comes from the federal government and the state’s allotment can change every year. Missouri can pay for a portion of your costs, if the applicant meets conditions. Some of the eligibility conditions include income limits and the applicant also needs to be employed or in job training. Since public funds are so limited, there is usually a waiting list. More details on Missouri free child care assistance.

Apply for government assistance in Missouri

Each program referenced above has conditions that need to be met, including income and/or age. Funding is also limited. To get more information or to apply, dial the Missouri Department of Social Services at (573) 751-3221. There are also local county and city offices (Family Resource centers) to try for public aid. They include the following:

Boone County

Kansas City

St. Louis

By Jon McNamara

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