The North Carolina Financial Assistance Work First Program helps families with children be self-sufficient. Its goal is to help families get off welfare so families only receive the financial assistance for the short term. The program works with local families to empower them to be able to work, have money for financial emergencies, and to save for their future.
The short-term program helps North Carolina residents to function on their own. The services offered cover all the bases including employment assistance, Medicaid (medical insurance), and financial assistance, but only temporarily. The program also provides social/emotional support services, financial counseling, and assistance with childcare and transportation, helping families learn to get back on their feet and function.
How Does it Work?
Work First's main goal is to help families become self-sufficient by providing short-term financial aid and plenty of training to help adults function in the real world.
There are three main areas the North Carolina Financial Assistance program, Work First helps families:
- Diversion – This financial assistance program helps eligible households with unexpected financial emergencies. The program is for low-income families at or below 200% of the poverty level.
- Work – This is the main way the program helps families, by requiring the adults to work in order to receive financial assistance. The program limits the amount of time a family can receive financial aid and helps families find appropriate jobs to bring in the money they need. Families can use the cash assistance program for a maximum of 24 months and then aren't eligible for it for another 3 years.
- Retention – The goal of the North Carolina Financial Assistance program is to help families stay off welfare. To do this, the program offers child care subsidies, help with transportation, short term training, and financial counseling.
To be eligible for the Work First Program, you must meet the following criteria:
- Be a North Carolina resident
- Be a US citizen
- Make less than 200% of the poverty level
- Have children under the age of 18 or be pregnant
If you're 18-years old and the head of your household, you may also qualify.
How to Apply for the Work First Program
To apply for the North Carolina Financial Assistance program, you must find your local Department of Social Services.
The North Carolina Financial Assistance Work First Program helps families get back on their feet. While it's not meant to be a permanent plan, it gives families up to 24 months to get back on their feet.
During that time, take advantage of the many services offered including counseling, support in finding and keeping a job, and various levels of support to care for your children so you can continue working.
The program is the federal government's way of helping families get off of Welfare and to earn their own living, so they don't have to rely on financial assistance any longer.