Financial Help for Single Mothers in West Virginia

Single mothers often bear a tremendous financial burden. Living on one paycheck, most are unable to provide even the barest of necessities.

The result is more children growing up in impoverished homes. Nearly half (45%) were poor.

In West Virginia, key assistance programs are available for single mothers to make up for any lack of financial resources.

These are geared towards filling in the gaps in their lives and that of their children.

1West Virginia WORKS

WV WORKS is West Virginia’s TANF Program that provides monthly cash assistance to eligible families. It is based on the goals of assisting families near the poverty level to become self-sufficient.

Those receiving cash benefits are required to complete and sign a Personal Responsibility Contract (PRC). It is supposed to be a plan of activities you will do to help you get a job & to support your family on your own.

In most cases, you’re only entitled to no more than 5 years or 60 months of welfare checks over your lifetime. Most people on VW WORKS also receive SNAP benefits and Medicaid.

Applications for WV WORKS may be made at DHHR’s local office or electronically via inROADS — the one & only tool to apply for benefits offered by the state of West Virginia.

2West Virginia Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

West Virginia SNAP helps low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled with cash assistance to buy the food they need for a nutritionally adequate diet. Eligibility is based on household size, income, assets and some household expenses.

Eligible West Virginians will receive an EBT card, similar to a debit card, that they use to make food purchases at grocery stores and supermarkets. Acceptable purchases include food for people and plants and/or seeds to grow food.

3West Virginia Special Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)

WIC serves West Virginia’s pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, and infants and children up to age 5 who meet WIC eligibility guidelines; and are considered to be “at nutritional risk”.

It provides very low-income, nutritionally at-risk participants with free supplemental healthy food, nutrition education, breastfeeding support, immunization screenings, and referrals for other health and social service needs.

4West Virginia Medicaid

Medicaid offers health care coverage for West Virginians who meet the program’s eligibility requirements for Medicaid; particularly those with high medical expenses but limited income and people who are elderly or have a disability.

Medicaid pay for hospital services, doctor visits, prescriptions, nursing home care and other healthcare needs, depending on what program a person is eligible for.

As West Virginia has expanded its Medicaid eligibility, you can qualify for Medicaid if you earn up to 138% of the federal poverty level — that’s about $27,300 for a single mother of two.

5West Virginia Children’s Health Insurance Program (WV CHIP)

West Virginia CHIP provides health coverage to uninsured children in West Virginia whose families earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but too little to afford private coverage — up to age 19.

WV CHIP is free for most families with incomes below 305% of the poverty guidelines. Families with incomes above the threshold will pay low monthly premiums and co-pays for some services.

Call 1-877-WVA-CHIP (1-877-982-2447) or to have an application mailed to you or you may also apply via the Internet at inROADS for expedited processing.

6West Virginia Child Care Assistance Program

If you are a West Virginia resident of Kanawha, Clay, Jackson or Roane counties, you meet certain income guidelines and participate in WV Works, you may be eligible for financial aid for child care costs.

The program pays for part of the child care costs and you are responsible for paying the difference. The actual amount is determined according to the family’s monthly gross income and is based on a sliding fee scale.

You must apply for child care assistance in person at any of designated location near you or call 1-888-595-8290 for more information.

7West Virginia Unemployment Insurance

Unemployment Insurance is a state-operated insurance program designed to partially replace lost wages when you are out of work through no fault of your own. To be eligible, you must have been paid of at least $2200 in the first two of the last five calendar quarters.

If you meet the eligibility requirements of the law, you’re entitled to supplemental income while you are looking for a new job, up to a maximum of $424 per week. In West Virginia, the minimum weekly benefit rate is $24.1

As soon as you’re unemployed, report in person to the nearest unemployment claims office. You may also file by telephone at 1-800-379-1032, or by the internet at WorkForce West Virginia.

8West Virginia Higher Education Grant

The West Virginia Higher Education Grant is a need-based financial aid program for undergraduate students who attend an approved private or public university or college in the state of West Virginia or Pennsylvania.

Award amounts vary based on the applicant’s demonstrated level of financial need, up to a maximum of $2,500 for each academic year. For priority consideration, file your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before April 15 deadline.

  1. Source: VW Benefit Rate Table – and shall apply to benefit years beginning on any day in the year commencing on July 1, 2011 and ending on July 6, 2013. []