I am currently raising my grandchildren/relatives. Do I qualify for any financial assistance?
All over the country, kinship care payments may be available to relative caregivers. The requirements for receiving these payments vary from state to state. Depending on a number of factors, including caregiver's income and the legal status of the caregiving arrangement, a grandparent may be eligible for some type of financial support. Child Welfare Information Gateway, a service of the Children's Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, provides a factsheet titled Kinship Caregivers and the Child Welfare System, which is designed to help kinship caregivers, including grandparents, aunts and uncles, and other relatives caring for children, work effectively with the child welfare system.
Many states have a kinship care contact that may be able to answer questions related to sources of financial assistance; some state websites provide specific kinship care information and links to relevant organizations. The Child Welfare Information Gateway website provides a listing of kinship care contacts and programs by state.
In addition, Grandfamilies.org, a collaboration among Generations United, the Brookdale Foundation Group, the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law, AARP, Casey Family Programs, ChildFocus, Child Trends, Children's Defense Fund, and the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption have updated the GrandFacts: State Fact Sheets for Grandparents and Other Relatives Raising Children, which include links to contacts, support groups, public benefits, educational assistance, and relevant laws.
2-1-1 is a free social services hotline available in most states, which connects callers to a wide range of community resources, including basic services and assistance benefits.
The USA.Gov portal also offers relevant information on how to obtain a bank loan, housing, and other relevant topics.
Similarly, the Benefits.gov official benefits website of the U.S. Government provides online access to information from across benefit categories, agencies by state.