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Public assistance and government benefits Mississippi DHS.

Find where low-income families in Mississippi will get government assistance from. Benefit programs in Mississippi, including SNAP food stamps, cash assistance, Medicaid and other public assistance programs help the working poor, elderly and disabled among others. Get details on state of MS economic assistance programs and benefits below, including how to apply in a county or at MyMDHS.

Social services and cash assistance is available for paying for items such as food, government health care insurance, housing and more. Participants will also be able to work with a social worker from the Mississippi Department of Human Services to gain long term self-sufficiency, such as a new job or employment training services.

Free cash assistance in Mississippi

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is available for families with kids (including single moms or dads) and low income Mississippi families with children up to age 18 years of age. The government money can pay for bills including clothes, gas, utilities, rent and more. Cash assistance is offered regardless of race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, national origin, or gender.

Monthly cash disbursements from the Mississippi TANF public assistance program are made for children and their caretaker relatives who meet income levels and other conditions. Government aid is generally offered for those residents who do not have enough resources, assets and income to meet their everyday living needs and expenses.

The program is limited in scope and only runs for a defined period of time. A client can only receive help from TANF for no more than 60 months, and that is a lifetime benefit as well. A small number of exceptions may be provided from time to time. The exact amount of the TANF payment provided to families is determined based on their income as well as number of individuals who reside in the household.

People who receive support from this program will also need to participate in an approved work activity, such as job training or an actual job with data online at MyMDHS. This needs to occur after they are determined to be "work ready" by their Department of Human Services social worker. Or they need to be in a work activity no longer than 24 months (within the 60 month lifetime maximum), whether or not consecutive, after receiving public assistance, whichever comes first.




Clients of the program work with their social service worker and/or case manager to establish an employment goal for moving the family to self-sufficiency and off of government benefits. Together you will create a work plan to help you reach your employment goal as quickly as possible, which will allow you to transition off of public assistance. People need to do one or more of the following work or job training activities:

  • Participate in work experience programs
  • Job search and readiness services
  • Vocational education (not to exceed 12 months)
  • Unsubsidized employment resources and programs
  • Job skills training and enhancement
  • Community service programs
  • Take classes or education directly related to employment, such as high school or GED equivalent or education related to employment, if under age 20.

While an individual is cooperating with the Mississippi TANF Work Program and while the person is meeting the requirements of their agreed upon work plan (EDP), then the individual will continue to receive access to social services and cash benefits from the government. Read more on cash assistance in Mississippi.

Subsidized or free child care in MS is available from the Mississippi Certificate Program. The state, using mostly federal government funds, can provide assistance to low income families for their day care costs. Public aid is available to parents that are working, in school, or maybe attending job training. The demand for this resource is very high and funding is limited, so waiting lists are usually used. Click here for details on free child care in Mississippi.

Any type of public and/or cash assistance in Mississippi involves self-sufficiency too. The government will madate it. This may be employment, credit counseling, budgeting, and support. Case managers partner with the client on this process. The goal is to help the family (or individual) exit poverty and be financially successful long term with everything from employment to emergency savings. There may also be free Mississippi job placement programs too





Free government food programs from Mississippi DHS.

Mississippi Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will help families with a low-income stretch food dollars and budgets as they can get assistance with buying healthy food,. Families with be given an EBT card and vouchers to shop with. SNAP, often referred to as food stamps, can offer lower income families free or low cost groceries that they need for good health. Federal laws and regulations set many of the eligibility criteria, income guidelines and resource limits. The EBT card will help low-income and elderly families get the nutrition they need.

Some residents who usually benefits from the DHS SNAP food stamps in Mississippi include people who are unemployed or work part-time, those who work for low incomes, the elderly or disabled and those who live on a small income. There is also food assistance from public assistance for people who receive TANF, SSI or other public assistance cash payments. Or even learn about a wide range of disability assistance from the government.

The United States Department of Agriculture partners with the state of Mississippi to fund the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). Public money used for food and commodity purchases, and other non-profit agencies and food pantries, provide the assistance to people in their local communities. The commodities purchased by the government will be stored at Twelve Baskets Food Bank in Biloxi as well as the Mississippi Food Network in Jackson. As indicated, the government surplus commodities are distributed through soup kitchens, food pantries, churches and homeless shelters throughout the state.

Free Mississippi government healthcare and insurance from Human Services

Seniors and elderly in Mississippi can get help from the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP). This is more of an information and medical counseling program designed to answer the elderly's questions about medical issues and health insurance. Whether it is supplemental insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, social services, or other private or public health coverage, volunteers who are trained and part of SHIP can answer questions, compare policies, organize paperwork and help people with filing claims and appeals.

There are many other very low income families as well as uninsured in Mississippi. Even moderate income families often struggle with paying for medical bills or prescription drugs. There are free public health insurance plans, Medicaid, Medicare, and other benefits from MyMDHS and Human Services. Qualified families may get immunizations, STD checks, insulin supplies, help paying for ambulance bills, and many other items.





Local Human Service agencies that offer public assistance

To apply for government benefit help, call the Mississippi Department of Human Services at 601.359.4500 or dial 800-948-3050. Speak to a case manager to learn about all options that are available to you, or get online applications to government benefits in MS at MyMDHS. Or find specific public assistance programs by county and/or city below.

De Soto County

Harrison County

Hinds County


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