San Joaquin County public assistance programs.

San Joaquin County families can turn to the Human Services Agency for assistance in the form of public aid and assistance. The government, using federal and state of California funding, provide help and stability to low income families. There is food, housing, and other support services available, all with the goal of self-sufficiency.

Some of the aid is focused on those residents that are most at risk, such as children, senior citizens, or the disabled in the county of San Joaquin. They may be able to receive cash from CalWORKs or general assistance, and some of the other in demand services include CalFresh food stamps.

As noted above, cash assistance is available to qualified families through the California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids program, which is commonly called CalWORKs. It was created to be the state’s version of the federal funded TANF program. This time-limited, public-aid is designed for indigent families with dependent children.

Loans are available to poverty-stricken adults and the low income as well. Human Services Agency processes applications to general assistance, or GA. For those that qualify, using a combination of county and state funds, GA provides short-term, repayable loans to adults in need. Qualified applicants must be unemployed and at least 18 years of age and meet other conditions that are in place.

There are other public aid resources for unemployed individuals who are looking for work. They may qualify for financial assistance from State Supplemental Payment (SSP), CAPI, or another program, which is Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or programs. These focus on the disabled or residents with an extenuating circumstance.

The other option is CAPI, or the San Joaquin County Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants. This provides monetary assistance to elderly, disabled and/or blind immigrants who meet certain qualifications.

Utility bills can be paid using grants from the HEAP - Home Energy Assistance Program. This is available in Stockton and across the county, and Human Services can offer income-eligible residents of a credit to their monthly electric bills. Call (209) 468-1000 for information on this and other conservation measures.




Veterans can receive support from both the Human Services Agency as well as the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). The county helps former service members and their families apply for benefits and other forms of public assistance from the State of California, federal government and local government entities. Grants from the government can be used for everything from paying back rent in an emergency to buying food or paying down medical bills.

Furthermore, the Department of Human Assistance offers the College Fee Waiver for Veterans’ Dependents program. This is intended for spouses, widows and children of veterans who have died or are permanently disabled as a result of their service.

Under this option, which is available throughout California as well as the counties of San Joaquin, qualified clients can attend any institution that is part of the California State University network free of charge. Participants can also attend any community college in Sacramento and other approved educational facility at no cost to them.

Additional services available to veterans and their families in San Joaquin County include vocational rehabilitation and also job training. There is financial support too, and that comes in the form of service-connected disability compensation, burial assistance, VA life insurance, medical care and housing assistance. This are mostly government grants that are used to help service members.

Cal-Learn is a statewide resource designed for teenage parents and pregnant teenagers who are on public assistance or some other form of welfare. Case managers help clients graduate from high school or obtain a GED, and there is also ongoing support as they work toward long-term self-sufficiency.

The Human Services Agency Healthy Families and Medi-Cal programs, which are sponsored by the state, offer low-cost or free health insurance. This form of publicly [aid for medical assistance is targeted at individuals who are disabled, blind, pregnant, or 65 years of age or older. There is also support for individuals who are residing in a long-term care facility in California. Moreover, Healthy Families and Medi-Cal can help individuals who are unemployed, receiving assistance from CalWORKs or under 21 years of age. The children of deceased parents qualify for these programs as well.





Families who are not eligible for the Medi-Cal program can access health care in Stockton via the Low-Income Health Program, commonly called LIHP. So there are other options available, depending on the person’s circumstances.

Under the CMISP, or the San Joaquin County Medically Indigent Services Program, individuals living in poverty can obtain dental or health care. This public healthcare assistance resource is offered to GA program enrollees, the working poor as well as other very low-income families.

The department provides childcare assistance and related services, using funds from the federal, state and local government. Contingent upon the availability of resources, the Human Services may offer free day care or more than likely provide it at a reduced price. For those that are found eligible, parents of the child may qualify for full-day, part-day, full-year or part-time childcare services. All staff members and teachers that take part in administering this service are experienced and possess a California teacher or associate permit.

Childcare subsidies and services are also offered through the three-stage childcare system of CalWORKs. Qualified parents who are working or in job training are the primary recipients. However there may also be support for those that are seeking employment.




San Joaquin County families can make use of government funds that partially cover the cost of childcare services, and the department’s staff members can help parents find high-quality, affordable providers in the region. As with almost all government benefits, there is typically a waiting list for childcare subsidies and services.

For more information, the main San Joaquin County Human Services Agency is at 333 E. Washington Street, Stockton, California 95202. A second office is at 1330 S. Ham Lane, Lodi, CA 95242, and both can be reached by dialing (209) 953-7009.


By Jon McNamara

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