Beyond benefits.gov, reviewed on Grants For Widows With Children, you can also find some valuable resources by investigating some government options such as Social Security directly.
Social Security: You can explore potential social security benefits without filling out the lengthy form at benefits.gov.
To do so you simply make an appointment with a local office. Then you can learn more about Social Security Survivor Benefits. You can also discover Additional Options For Widows With Children below.
Social Security Survivor Benefits have the advantage of being tax-free. And the Social Security Administration actually does a good job providing support.
You can find your nearest office and make an appointment by calling the central Social Security telephone number at 1-800-772-1213.
When you go to your appointment be sure to bring all necessary documentation such as your spouse's death certificate, social security numbers for all family members, your bank account information, and more. Rest assured that the person you speak with will tell you exactly what you will need to have available, so you can be sure to be well prepared for your meeting. Listen carefully and make a list.
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- Business Assistance: Sometimes business assistance programs will give preference to women and to widows supporting children. Learn more about how to find financial assistance for your business at Grants For Business. If you have a good business idea and need help to pursue it, discover more about a relatively recent phenomenon called Microfinancing. Organizations offering microfinance loans for new small business ventures often provide training and other support in addition to financial help. And, they are particularly geared to support ventures launched by those without much money and without access to traditional funding sources like banks.
- Foundations and Other Private Institutions: There are a handful of private groups who provide financial and other help to widows. Some have very narrow eligibility requirements so you may or may not qualify. For starters, and for widespread availability and accessibility, try getting involved with a local church if you are not already. You may not be “religious” or you may have had bad experiences with church but there are warm, welcoming and inclusive churches out there who might provide some support. The pastors would also be familiar with local agencies and places of assistance.
For more formal foundation help, try thelizlogelinfoundation.org (LLF) if it has been less than a year since the death of your spouse. They give out grants to qualifying families to help alleviate the tough financial situation many widows and widowers find themselves in. There is of course a lot of demand since it's estimated (by the U.S. Census Bureau) that at least 267,000 men and women aged 39 or less are widowed. Most (over 80%) of those whom LLF supports had no life insurance. The grants LLF awards are not formally tracked and can be used for whatever the family needs. You simply fill out an application in order to apply for a grant.
You can also apply to tedlilndmanoutreachfoundation.org if you happen to live in Pennsylvania in Bucks or Montgomery Counties. Also see forthekidsfoundation.org and click on “Request Assistance.”
- Housing: Though the government is not giving anybody free grants to purchase a home, there is quite a bit of assistance available in this area. Your local federal Department of Housing and Urban Development agency office would be a good place to start. They have counselors available to assist you with all aspects of buying or keeping a home, and their services are free to the homeless. If there is any charge for their services, they will be minimal and the counselors must tell you up front what their services will cost. Learn more about what help may be available and how to get it at Government Grants To Purchase A Home.