Alaska Assistance Programs

Single parents in Alaska have a wealth of resources to take advantage of each year. The state understand the complexities of life and wants to help everyone thrive.

According to the statistics, there were 24,647,000 children living in single parent homes in 2013 and that number has remained about the same for the past four years as you can see in the image below.

Children in single-parent families
Data provided by: National KIDS COUNT

The poverty rate of children living in single parent families is great. Across the country, approximately 40 percent of children living in single parent families are considered living in poverty. Approximately 4.6 million in 2012 of never married parents lived in poverty.

The need for assistance is obvious, which is why Alaska has programs in place to help. Most of them only need an application upon meeting eligibility requirements.

Alaska Medicaid

Medicaid is a federally funding healthcare insurance program that helps children, adults with disabilities, and older adults seek quality medical care. Medicaid works just like insurance does with some limitations on what it covers.

Eligibility requirements

Medicaid recipients must be children under the age of 18, have a proven disability as an adult, or are over the age of 65. Pregnant women are also eligible. All recipients must meet the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).
Funding Amount

Medicaid recipients receive free medical care from approved healthcare professionals.

Website and contact detail

To learn more about Alaska Medicaid, visit the Department of Health and Social Services. You may also call 907-465-3347.

Alaska food stamps

Alaska Food Stamp Program

The Alaska Food Stamp Program offers food cards to people with a low income. These food cards can only be used for certain items – usually foods that promote the health and well-being of recipients.

Eligibility requirements

Recipients must pass the income and assets test. The tests are based on 130% of the Alaska poverty standard at the time of the application. The asset limit is $2,250 for most households, but those with a disability or 60 years or older have a $3,250 limit.

Funding Amount

Funding depends on income and poverty level at the time of application. The following chart shows the average food stamp benefit:

Alaska naximum Monthly food stamp benefit

Website and contact details

For more information about the food stamps program in Alaska, go to the food stamps section of the Department of Health and Social Services website.

Alaska Special Program for Women, Infants, & Children

Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides assistance to children and pregnant women. Assistance supports the nutrition and healthcare needs of low-income children and women.

Eligibility requirements

Assistance is based on income. Children and women are eligible for WIC if they meet the guidelines for food stamps, Medicaid, Denali Kid Care, and Alaska Temporary Assistance Program.

In general, the eligibility requirements are:

• Pregnant; or
• breastfeeding; or
• recently had a baby; or
• have a child who is under the age of five; and
• meet income eligibility; and
• have a nutritional need.

Funding Amount

Funding depends on needs and is given in the form of care, food, and education. The program assesses the needs of the children and/or mother to determine how much is needed.

Website and contact details

For more information about WIC in Alaska visit that section of the Department of Health and Social Services website.

Unemployment Alaska

Alaska Unemployment Insurance

Unemployment insurance offers compensation to those who lose their job. It helps to cover expenses until the recipient finds a new job.

Eligibility requirements

Eligibility requirements include having earned wages from employment, have a total gross income of $2,500, and be available for full time work.

Funding Amount

Alaska offers a minimum weekly benefit of $56. The maximum is $370 per week. Compensation is only provided for a certain amount of time determined during the application process.

Website and contact detail

To apply for unemployment insurance, consult the Department of Labor website. To find your local office, visit this site.

Child Support Alaska

Alaska Temporary Assistance Program (ATAP)

ATAP is a program that provides cash to needy families with children. The cash must be used to support basic necessities such as food, clothing, and shelter. This program is part of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant.

Eligibility requirements

Families must have less than $2,000 countable resources. Families with an individual who is 60 years or older have a limit of $3,000. These resources do not include a home, personal goods and vehicles.

Funding Amount

The amount a family receives depends on the size of the family, income and how much is paid towards shelter.

Alaska Temporary Assistance

Website and contact details

For more information about applying for ATAP, visit the Alaska ATAP website.

Alaska Denali Kidcare (CHIP)

Denali Kidcare provides health insurance to needy family with children and teens to ensure they receive the medical care they need.

Eligibility requirements
Working and non-working families with children under the age of 18 may be eligible. Pregnant women may also be eligible. There are income guidelines to be eligible. Guidelines can be seen here.

Funding Amount

This program offers health insurance to cover medical expenses from routine healthcare appointments.

Website and contact details
For more information about Alaska Denali Kidcare (CHIP), visit the Department of Health and Social Services website. An application is provided on the website.

Alaska Child Care Assistance Program “Parents Achieving Self Sufficiency (PASS)

This program provides child care expense assistance for eligible families. Parent must be receiving an education or in a training program. The program is split up into three categories: PASS I, PASS II, and PASS III.

PASS I – This program provides child care assistance to those who are receiving benefits from ATAP.

PASS II – This program is for families transitioning from ATAP.

PASS III – This program is for families who may not be eligible for PASS I or PASS II.

Eligibility requirements

Each part of the program has it’s own eligibility requirements. PASS I and PASS II recipients must be receiving benefits from ATAP and be working. PASS II recipients must be working, attending school or in a job training program. Eligibility is also based on the family’s income and size.

Funding Amount

The number of child care hours are determined by the hours of your work or job training. Child care expenses are paid for directly to the provider.

Website and contact details

For more information about the PASS programs, visit the Alaska Division of Public Assistance.

Alaska General Relief Assistance

The General Relief Assistance (GRA) provides financial assistance to families who find themselves in an emergency situation. It is used as a last report to families meaning that if the family is unable to receive any other assistance from programs offered, GRA may be granted.

Eligibility requirements

The household must be receiving assistance from any other state program. The recipient must be an adult, married, or living apart from their parents. Household’s resources (meaning all valuables) must not exceed $500 and meet income limits, which are dependent on household size.

Funding Amount

Funding depends on family size, need, and income. Limits are $300 for one person, $400 for two people, and $500 for three people.

Website and contact details
Visit the Department of Health and Social Services of Alaska for more information about GRA.

Scholarships in Alaska

Gear Up Alaska Scholarship

GEAR UP stands for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs. It is a discretionary grant program to help low-income students seek a postsecondary education.

Eligibility requirements

This program is for state agencies seeking to provide education to low-income students. Education agencies that are part of Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs), Local Education Agencies (LEAs) and State Education (SEAs) may be eligible.

Funding Amount

Grants may be up to $5,000 per year. They are limited to $800 per student.

Website and contact details
For more information about eligibility and to apply, visit this website.

Alaska Grants

Alaskadvantge Education Grant

The Alaska Education Grant (AEG) program helps students who are seeking an education at a postsecondary educational institution in Alaska.

Eligibility requirements

Requirements include:

• Being an Alaska resident
• Being a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
• Having a high school diploma or GED
• In an undergraduate degree program or vocational certificate program
• Enrolled in the program at least half-time
• Have a financial need of $500 or more
• Not having a baccalaureate degree
• Meeting academic progress requirements satisfactory

Funding Amount

Awards are $500 to $4,000 for each academic year.

Website and contact details
For more information about Alaskadvantage Education Grant, visit the program’s website.

Homeschooling in Alaska

Homeschooling Laws

Children are able to be education at home by a parent or legal guardian. There is no requirement to notify or seek approval to teach children in the home. Parents and legal guardians do not have to have teacher qualifications.

Eligibility requirements

Children who attend public school for the first grade at the age of six may be held to the attendance compulsory. This means that children will need to remain in public schools between 7 and 16. Parents do have the option of removing the child 60 days from enrollment in the first grade, but once he/she turn seven, he/she is held by the compulsory attendance law.

Different programs that are available
For more information about homeschooling laws, contact the homeschooling website for Alaska.

Other Alaska Funding Programs

Alaska Heating Assistance Program (HAP)

HAP helps households that do not have enough income to afford heating expenses. It pays a portion of the expenses. The program runs each year from October 1 to April 30. Those interested must apply each year and checks are sent in November.

Eligibility requirements

Recipients must show they are unable to pay for heating expenses at the time of application.

Funding Amount

The amount HAP will pay for heating expenses depends on income, household size, and heating bill.

Website and contact details
For more information about HAP and apply for the program, call 1-888-804-6330 or visit the website.

Alaska Permanent Dividend (PFD)

PFD pays Alaska residents who are planning to live in the state indefinitely. This program serves to keep the population up in the state to foster good economic growth.

Eligibility requirements

Recipients must be a resident of Alaska for one full calendar year and not claim any other state as a residence. Recipients cannot be incarcerated or sentenced to a felony conviction the previous or current year. They cannot be absent from Alaska for more than 180 days and be present at least 72 consecutive hours.

Funding Amount

The lowest dividend payout was in 1984 with $331.29. The amount has risen over the years with 2008 being the highest payout of $2,069. The following chart shows yearly payout to each eligible Alaska resident.

Website and contact details
For more information about PFD, visit the PFD website.

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