Free and Low-Cost Resources for Mothers, Pregnant Women, and Caregivers

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If you are a mother, expecting a child, or provide care for children or dependents, there are resources available to help you and your loved ones. The government has permanent programs in place, as well as new and temporary emergency assistance programs due to the hardships of COVID-19. There are also many non-profit organizations that offer free resources in their communities. Here’s a list of resources and programs if you are in need of food, cash, utility or housing assistance, legal help, tax benefit information, and more: 

Can I receive benefits without jeopardizing my immigration status?

Non-citizens often qualify for assistance, especially if their children are citizens with social security numbers. In most cases, it will not affect your status to receive government assistance (like SNAP or WIC) or free resources from organizations in your community. However, there is an exception for cash benefits, such as the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash benefit. Cash benefits can be considered a public charge. 

According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, these benefits will not affect your status:

  • Emergency medical assistance;
  • Disaster relief;
  • National school lunch programs;
  • The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children;
  • The Children’s Health Insurance Program;
  • Subsidies for foster care and adoption;
  • Government-subsidized student and mortgage loans;
  • Energy assistance;
  • Food pantries and homeless shelters; and
  • Head Start.

If you have a lawyer, it is always safe to inquire with them first. See HERE for more information about public charge. 

What kinds of resources are available for mothers and pregnant women? 

There are various resources available for mothers, pregnant women, or anyone in need. Below are some resources and step-by-step instructions on how to apply for programs and how to access these resources in your community. 

Food Resources and Assistance Programs

Step by Step: What is the Process to Apply for the Food Stamp Program or SNAP? (English version) (Spanish version)

Here’s What You Need To Know About EBT Cards & Benefits (English version) (Spanish version)

How To Find Free Food Near You, Step-By-Step (English version) (Spanish version)

Cash Assistance, Utility Assistance, and More

Here’s How to Find Free Food, Financial Aid, Utility Assistance, and More All in One Place (English version) (Spanish version)

Here’s How To Get Cash Assistance, Help With Childcare, And Job Preparation (English version) (Spanish version)

Looking For Help With Your Utility Costs? Check Out This Federal Program (English version) (Spanish version

Here’s What To Know About Affordable Housing And Rental Assistance (English version) (Spanish version)

Here’s How To Get Financial Assistance For Food, Utilities, Car Seats, And Other Emergencies (English version) (Spanish version) 

Options For Free Or Reduced-Price Public Transportation And Cost-Efficient Rides (English version) (Spanish version)

Here’s How You Can Get Help Paying for Internet and A Free Smartphone (English version) (Spanish version)

Tax Benefits and Legal Help

FAQ’s: This Tax Credit Increase Helps Pay For Child Care (English version) (Spanish version

Have A New Child In 2021? You’re Probably Eligible For A Bigger Tax Refund (English version) (Spanish version)

Need Help Filing Taxes Without A Social Security Number? An ITIN Can Help (English version) (Spanish version)

Where to Find Places to File Taxes for Free (English version) (Spanish version

Here’s How to Find Free Legal Help Near You, Step-by-Step (English version) (Spanish version)

Immigration Aid: What Are ‘Pro Bono’ Legal Services And How Can I Access Them? (English version) (Spanish version

Thalia Carrillo is a writer based in Austin, TX. She moved from her hometown of El Paso, TX to pursue a journalism degree at The University of Texas at Austin. She enjoys covering politics and pop culture and has a passion for social justice, digital storytelling, plants, and specialty coffee!