Are you pregnant, but afraid you can’t afford a baby? Maybe you are a single mom or going to be, and you need of financial assistance?
Well take a deep breath and rest assured – there are many financial resources available to help you out!
In Illinois, there are several government benefits that pregnant women and single moms in may apply and qualify for. The following information is an overview of what benefits are available and has been adapted from www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx.
Financial Assistance Programs
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (formerly Food Stamps) helps low income people and families buy the food they need for good health. Benefits are provided on the Illinois Link Card – an electronic card that is accepted at most grocery stores.
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) provides temporary financial and healthcare coverage for pregnant women and families with one or more dependent children. TANF provides financial assistance to pay for food, shelter, utilities and expenses other than medical.
Aid to the Aged, Blind and Disabled (AABD) Cash is for people who are aged, blind and/or disabled and need money. A person who is eligible for the AABD Cash Program receives cash and healthcare coverage.
Illinois offers coverage to eligible children, adults, seniors and people with disabilities. These programs provide access to healthcare at a reasonable cost.
WIC is a food assistance program for women, infants, and children. It helps pregnant women, new mothers, and young children eat well and stay healthy. Special vouchers to buy milk, juice, eggs, cheese, cereal, peanut butter, and other healthy foods are part of this program.
Women who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or just had a baby.
Infants and children under 5 years old.
Families with a low to medium income.
More information on these and other State of Illinois Benefit programs can be found on the Department of Human Services’ website: http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=33698
More information on WIC can be found at http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=30513
The Illinois Department of Human Services has a website with all the information you will need to find out if you qualify for financial help, food stamps, or medical assistance. Anyone can apply for these benefits through ABE (Application for Benefits Eligibility.) Please visit: www.dhs.stat.il.us
In addition to these programs, there are different tax credits available as well:
The Child Tax Credit:
This is an important tax credit that may reduce your federal income tax by up to $1,000 for each qualifying child under the age of 17, depending on your income. All of this information as well as the current tax forms for the Child Tax Credit can be found at: https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf
Earned Income Credit:
For information on this tax credit, go to https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1040sei.pdf
Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit:
For information, go to: https://www.irs.gov/uac/ten-things-to-know-about-the-child-and-dependent-care-credit
And finally, don’t forget about our program…
Project Love is a grant program of Illinois Right to Life that supports women in unplanned or crisis pregnancy situations. Project Love was founded in 1996 by the late Mary Bliss out of her love and concern for pregnant women in difficult situations.
Since its inception, we have gifted over half a million dollars in grants to support pregnant women and their families.
Mission: Project Love’s mission is to support pregnant women and new mothers in a financial crisis by providing grants for rent, utility bills or other necessities.
Applicants go through a rigorous application process and those who qualify can receive a one-time grant for up to $1,000 to pay vital bills. Grants are always issued to a creditor or creditors to pay the bills and not to the grant recipient.
Applicants are first screened by their counselors at qualified Pregnancy Help Centers or other social service agencies throughout Illinois. These agencies then work with the applicant to submit the grant request on the applicant’s behalf.
- Must be a resident of the state of Illinois
- Must either be pregnant or have had a child in the last 12 months
- Must be doing all they can to solve the crisis or problem themselves
- Need is urgent and it has been determined that Project Love is a last resort
- Only one grant is given per pregnancy and is issued to her creditor
For more information, click here.