Single mother assistance/single mother help is available in many forms. The most common forms of single mother assistance/single mother help are welfare, food stamps and daycare assistance.
A 2002 survey of low-income single mothers found that 64% worked full time and needed full time daycare. The survey found that low-income single mothers who receive assistance for full time daycare are more likely to remain employed and are more like to have higher earnings. Steady employment and higher earnings allow these single mothers to stay off welfare.
In order to provide single mother assistance/single mother help, in 2006 Congress increased the funding for daycare assistance by $200 million per year. This additional $200 million per year, however, does not cover the total need for daycare assistance in the United States. Individual states are expected to make up the shortfall, an expectation that many do not believe will be met. This means that daycare assistance for single mothers is still drastically under funded. Surveys indicate that only 1 in 7 children who are eligible for daycare assistance will actually receive the assistance. Single mothers should contact the Department of Human Services to apply for daycare assistance.
Another form of single mother assistance/single mother help is assistance for single mothers who are under employed. An under employed single mother works at jobs requiring minimal skills and paying minimum wage. State employment offices offer training and education programs for single mothers who are under employed that are designed to teach them skills that will allow them to obtain higher skilled, higher paying employment. The programs cover tuition, books, transportation, meals, and in some cases, daycare. Single mothers who feel they are eligible for a program of this type should contact their local State employment office.
Single mother assistance/single mother help is also available for housing. HUD subsidizes apartment owners who, in turn, offer lower rent to low income single mothers. Single mothers wishing to apply for this type of single mother assistance/single mother help should contact HUD for a list of apartments available in their area. The local Housing Authority should also be contacted for a list of public housing available. There are over 1.3 million people living in public housing, which means that there is a waiting list so, it is advisable to get on the list as soon as possible.
In addition to food stamps, all states offer food bank or pantries to low income families. Many single mothers prefer to use food pantries instead of food stamps. For single mothers with lower paying jobs or larger families, it can be necessary to supplement food stamps with use of food pantries.