Washington Assistance and Financial Aid Programs.

Find how to get help, including food, rental or energy bill assistance and health care, in all cities and counties in Washington, including Seattle and Spokane.

Tenant Based Rental Assistance (TBRA)
The TBRA Rental Assistance Program provides low-income and struggling households with security and utility deposits, and will help also them with paying up to 12 months of rent. There is also financial aid available for homeless and families in transition. Call a community action agency for details, or find additional ways to get help with rent. More.

Basic Health
Basic Health is a Washington state-sponsored program that provides low-cost health care coverage and insurance through private health plans to low income and working poor families. It is very affordable healthcare coverage. 1-800-660-9840

General Assistance Unemployable (GAU)
A state-funded grant program that provides medical benefits and cash grants to persons who are mentally incapacitated and/or physically unemployable for 90 days from the date of application. 1-877-501-2233

Crisis Assistance and Social Services
No matter what you need help with, the Department of Human Services is a leading government organization to call. They can provide cash assistance, referrals, financial support, and services such as medical care and rental assistance. Learn more.

Free Mortgage and Foreclosure Counseling
Hundreds of attorneys across the state have joined together to provide struggling families and individuals with free legal advice to help them save their home. Learn more.

There are also dozens of non-profit agencies that are certified by HUD. Contact these agencies for free or low cost foreclosure prevention advice. Learn more.





Working Connections Child Care Program
This financial aid program helps individuals and families with paying for child care expenses and bills. Most of the support is for parents who are working or attending job training. More Washington child care programs.

Emergency Cash Assistance
If your family has an emergency, and if you need a one-time cash payment to keep safe housing, pay utilities, or for general help, you may be eligible for this government program. Dial 1-800-737-0617, or find more details on emergency assistance in Washington.

Legal Representation and Assistance
The state of Washington offers residents access to lawyers and non-profit law firms that will provide them with free legal aid. Pro-bono legal assistance is offered for civil matters. Learn more.

Debt Consolidation, Housing, and Financial Counseling
Learn what types of resources are available to help Washington residents get out of debt, repair their credit, and receive housing counseling. A number of certified not for profit counseling specialists operate in the region. Find debt and credit counseling in Washington.

State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP)
A low cost health insurance coverage plan offered for young adults under the age of 19 who live on their own, or with working parents, single parents, grandparents, friends, or other family members. (877) 543-7669

Senior Assistance
There are statewide resources that focus on assisting senior citizens, the elderly, and people over 55 years of age. Programs can provide free food, transportation, home care services, employment services and job training. Also get information on financial assistance in Washington. More.

Financial Aid and Case Management
One of the nations leading charities, the Salvation Army, has centers in Washington. Resources can help the low income pay their bills, housing, and address other basic needs. Referrals and support for various needs is offered. Read more Washington Salvation Army.

Assistance for Disabled
Individuals with a disability can receive benefits from the government and non-profits in Washington. Some of the services provided can include help with applying for cash assistance and SSDI, free meals, home care, assistance for caregivers, and other aid. More on disability benefits in Washington.




Free Health Care
There are also many free clinics located in Washington. You can find some in your county below, or click here for additional locations.

Some locations focus on helping individuals and families of all ages meet their dental needs by providing high quality dental services on a sliding fee scale. Continue.

Patients who lack health insurance, or who have limited coverage, can look into several government funded and coordinated medical bill assistance programs. Services are offered for the low income and families with no insurance or resources available. More Washington uninsured health care programs.

Employment Services, Self-sufficiency and Government Grants
Non-profit community action agencies offer a number of resources to help low income families and assist them with overcoming challenges. Self-sufficiency, job training, government aid and grants may all be administered. More community action agencies in Washington.

Free job search, training, career counseling and other employment assistance is available at WorkSource centers. Specialists will help the unemployed and career changers gain new skills and maybe find a job. Click here.

Washington Programs for Homeless and Eviction Assistance
Emergency Solution Grants and federal government funding can help pay rent in a crisis to stop an eviction. Low income apartments, funds for security deposits, and other housing solutions are available. Learn more.

Emergency Food Assistance
If you are in need of food and have very little money, you may qualify for emergency food assistance from the state. Programs such as SNAP and other resources are available.

WTAP - Washington Telephone Assistance Program
Discounts can be provided on cellular and home phone bills. The government program, known as Lifeline, helps low income families with a focus on senior citizens as well as the disabled, as they tend to have a more pressing need for the usage of a phone. More on Washington telephone assistance.

Housing Vouchers
HUD and the state of Washington offer low income individuals and families with partial rent payment assistance. Clients of the program can live in homes or apartments that are subsidized by the government.  Read Washington section 8.

Basic Food Program
This program helps lower income families and individuals receive a more nutritious diet by supplementing their income with Basic Food benefits.

In addition, dozens of food banks around Washington provide free groceries, perishable items, and other food assistance. Get information on Washington food banks.





Energy Bill Assistance
Residents of Washington State have access to a large number of financial assistance programs for paying utility bills. Many companies give discounts and also provide weatherization services. Read more.

Assistance From Washington Cities and Counties

Benton County (Prosser)

Chelan County (Wenatchee)

Clallam County (Port Angeles)

Clark County (Vancouver)

Clatsop County

Cowlitz County (Kelso)

Ferry County (Republic)

Grant County (Ephrata)

Grays Harbor County (Montesano)

Island County (Coupeville)

King County (Seattle)

Kitsap County (Port Orchard)

Kittitas County (Ellensburg)

Klickitat County (Goldendale)



Lewis County (Chehalis)

Mason County (Shelton)

Okanogan County

Pend Oreille County (Newport)

Pierce County (Tacoma)

San Juan County (Friday Harbor)

Skagit County (Mount Vernon)

Skamania County (Stevenson)

Snohomish County (Everett)

Spokane County

Stevens County (Colville)

Thurston County (Olympia)

Tri-Cities (Kennewick, Richland, and Pasco)

Walla Walla County (Walla Walla)

Whatcom County (Bellingham)

Whitman County (Colfax)

Yakima County

Washington Utility Bill Assistance

Seattle City Light
Seattle City Light utility customers can receive assistance of up to 50% or $200 on their utility bill if they have received a final notice.

Project SHARE
If you are experiencing a financial hardship, if you have received an urgent notice and have taken advantage of all other available aid programs, Project Share may help. It is funded by customer donations. and it will initially pay up to $250 towards your utility bill. If more help is needed, you may be eligible to receive up to $250 in addition to the initial payment of $250.





Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
The federal government provides money to help lower income households with paying their heating and energy bills.


By Jon McNamara

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