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Help for single moms in Alaska: 26 assistance programs

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If you’re a single mom in Alaska struggling to make ends meet, keep reading for resources that help with: 

Every month, I give out $500 cash to one single mom struggling with money, health, stress, child care, illness or loneliness — no strings attached. 

Qualifications are simple:

1. You're a single mom.

2. You need the money right now.

Fill out this form to apply:

(Note that the figures and information in this post are current as of publication date.)

Many of the programs on this list determine eligibility as a percentage of the federal poverty level (FPL) for Alaska. These are the 2023 Alaska poverty guidelines:

Number of people in family/householdAnnual income

You can also look up your area median income (AMI) here.

* For families/households with more than 8 people, add $6,430 for each additional person.

Emergency cash for low-income families in Alaska

If you need cash to pay bills, buy gas, feed your family, or for any other reason, these resources can help: 

Alaska Temporary Assistance Program 

The Alaska Temporary Assistance Program (ATAP) is provided under the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant. This program provides cash assistance and work services to low-income families with children for a lifetime limit of 60 months.

Payouts vary by family makeup, size, and monthly income, with the maximum payout for a one-parent household of three set at $923/month. 


  • Live in Alaska
  • U.S. citizen, legal alien, or qualified alien
  • Unemployed or underemployed, with low income — $3,657/month for a three-person family unit
  • Less than $2,000 in countable resources, OR less than $3,000 if the family includes an individual who is 60 or older
  • Must also meet at least one of the following:
  • Have a child 18 years old or younger
  • Be pregnant
  • Be 18 years old or younger and the head of your household

How to get help:

  • For additional information on this program, visit the Alaska Temporary Assistance page 
  • Call the Public Assistance main office at 907-465-3347

More emergency cash help in Alaska: 

Single moms in Alaska can visit or dial 2-1-1 to ask for assistance.

Check out these posts for more ways to get emergency cash: 

These are some more tips for getting cash quickly: 

Housing help for single moms in Alaska

If you need help finding a place to live or paying your rent/mortgage, these programs can help: 

Public Housing and Housing Choice Vouchers (Section 8)

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers affordable housing and vouchers to help low-income households pay their rent. 

Alaska’s local HUD office offers rental assistance for up to 24 months. Tenants are initially responsible for paying approximately 30% of their adjusted gross income to the landlord for rent.


Vouchers and housing are based on household income and family size. You can find your county’s income limits on the HUD website

How to get help: 

  • Contact your local public housing agency and ask how to apply for assistance
  • Call 800-955-2232
  • Contact the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation for more information by calling 907-338-6100 (Anchorage) or 800-478-2432 (outside Anchorage)

Mortgage assistance in Alaska

If you need help buying a home in Alaska, these programs can help: 

NeighborWorks Alaska

NeighborWorks Alaska provides several programs for homeowners, including down payment assistance and home modification grants. 

How to get help: 

Call (907) 677-8490 or sign up online to apply and learn more information.

Check today's mortgage loan rates >>

Homeless assistance in Alaska

If you are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, check out these programs: 

Adelaide Apartments

Adelaide Apartments, located in downtown Anchorage, are for people who have been homeless. One of several rentals available through NeighborhoodWorks, the apartments are drug and alcohol free with shared kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry facilities. Rent payments are based on your income. 


  • Income cannot be more than 30% of AMI
  • Must be homeless

How to get help: 

Alaska Housing

Alaska Housing offers several rental programs for Alaska residents. Three of these programs are intended for low-income Alaskans: 


  • To qualify for program #1, the family’s income must be at or below 50% of the AMI. 
  • For program #2, income must be at or below 80% of the AMI. 
  • For #3, income must be at or below 60% of the AMI. Additional requirements and qualifications vary based on each program.

How to get help: 

More housing help: 

Electric bill assistance in Alaska

If you are struggling to pay your utility bills in Alaska, check out the following programs:

Heating Assistance Program (HAP)

HAP is a federally funded program that helps low-income households with their home energy bills. HAP may also be able to help with weatherization-related home repairs.


Must meet income limits — $3,599/month for a family of three.

How to get help:

Download an application on the Heating Assistance website.

Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP)

The Alaska Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) pays for home insulation that will help lower utility costs. 


You must be a resident of Alaska, with an income below $28,790 for a family of three. See full list of income limits.

Preference may be given to:

  • People over 60 years of age
  • Families with one or more members with a disability
  • Families with children (in most states)

Under DOE guidelines, you are automatically eligible to receive weatherization assistance if you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). 

How to get help:

For more information on Alaska’s Weatherization program, visit the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation website. You can also call 800-478-2432 (statewide except Anchorage). In Anchorage, call 907-338-6100.

More electric bill help: 

Free money to help pay bills

Medical insurance and dental help for single moms in Alaska

The following medical and dental services are available to qualifying individuals and families:   

Affordable Dental Care 

Affordable Dental Care locations in Anchorage, Wasilla, and Fairbanks offer monthly specials for non-insured patients. All offices offer full-service dental care, including procedures such as root canals, implants, and porcelain crowns. 

How to get help: 

Contact Affordable Dental Care to learn more about their three locations. 

Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) in Alaska

HRSA, an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, funds health centers that provide free or subsidized health and dental care to low-income people (eligibility criteria vary) and those otherwise unable to access quality health care, like people living in rural areas.

HRSA also offers a 24/7 free and confidential mental health hotline for pregnant and new moms. Dial 833-943-5746 (833-9-HELP4MOMS) if you are struggling.


Each health center sets its own eligibility criteria for free or reduced cost care. 

How to get help:

Find an HRSA health center in Alaska by typing in your address on HRSA’s search tool.

Alaska Medicaid

Medicaid is a health insurance program for low-income families in Alaska that covers: 

  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Hospital
  • Transportation services


  • Resident of the state of Alaska
  • U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or legal alien
  • In need of health care and insurance assistance
  • Within income limits
  • Must also be at least one of the following:
  • Pregnant
  • Responsible for a child 18 years old or younger
  • Blind
  • Have a disability (or a family member in your household with a disability)
  • 65 years old or older

How to get help:

  • Download a copy of the application and mail it to your nearest Public Assistance office
  • Call 888-318-8890 or 907-269-6529

Denali KidCare 

Denali KidCare is Medicaid coverage for children ages birth through age 18 and for pregnant women. Denali KidCare is generally issued for 12 months at a time. After the year is up, you’ll have to renew. 

Denali KidCare pays for all medical bills and medications. The program also covers: 

  • Dental work
  • Hearing aids
  • Physical rehabilitation equipment
  • Medically necessary airfare, hotel stays, meals, and taxis


  • Resident of the state of Alaska
  • U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or legal alien
  • In need of health care and insurance assistance
  • Within income limits — $5,257/month for a family of three

How to get help: 

More medical/dental help: 

Food help for low-income families in Alaska

A number of federal and state food and nutrition programs are available across the state:

Alaska Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

The Alaska Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides food benefits to low-income households. You will receive these benefits via an Alaska Quest card that you can use at authorized stores (similar to a debit card). 

The amount you receive each month depends on your household size and income. Alaska has special rules that allow for higher SNAP benefits in rural areas, and the use of benefits to purchase certain hunting and fishing subsistence supplies.


  • Must live in Alaska
  • Must be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. National, or a qualified alien
  • Most able-bodied people between 16 and 59 years old must be actively working a job
  • Asset limit is $2,750 for most households, and $4,250 for households with a member who is disabled or over 60 years old

How to get help: 

Apply for benefits on the Alaska SNAP website or call 907-222-3119

Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children is a nutrition program that provides free baby formula and nutritional food items to low-income mothers and their babies. 


  • Low-income, pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, for up to one year postpartum
  • Women up to six months postpartum who are not breastfeeding
  • Infants and children under 5 years old, including foster children
  • Low-income sole provider parents of children under age of 5 who are at nutritional risk and who are below 185% of FPL
  • If you are currently receiving Medicaid, Temporary Assistance, or Food Assistance help, you are also eligible for WIC

How to get help: 

National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program

NSLP serves healthy, well-balanced, reduced-price or free meals to children in school. An extension of the NSLP, the School Breakfast Program provides free or low-cost breakfast to eligible students. 


Household income must fall at or below the limits of the federal income eligibility guidelines.

How to get help: 

Schools send home meal applications at the beginning of each school year. However, you can apply for school meals anytime by submitting a household application directly to your school.

Alaska’s Summer Food Service Program

The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) provides free, nutritious meals to children age 18 or younger living in low-income areas. Summer meal sites are located at places like schools, public housing centers, playgrounds, camps, parks, churches, and rec centers.


Participants must live in Alaska and be under 18 years old. 

How to get help: 

Find a location near you at the USDA Summer Food Service Program website or call 907-465-3316.

Alaska Food Banks

The Food Bank of Alaska provides meals for individuals and families who are struggling to put food on the table. This nonprofit has 150+ partner food pantries and soup kitchens all over the state.


Each individual food bank sets its own eligibility and proof of need requirements. 

How to get help: 

To find a food bank near you and for additional information, visit the Food Bank of Alaska website.

More food help: 

Child care help for low-income families in Alaska

There are multiple federally funded education programs and resources in Alaska:

Alaska Head Start and Early Head Start

Head Start is a free federal preschool program for children aged 3 to 5 from low-income families. Early Head Start serves pregnant women and children under age 3. The programs focus on cognitive, social, and emotional development and prepare children for school. 


  • Children from birth to age 5 
  • Meet federal poverty guidelines 
  • Children in foster care, homeless children, and children from families receiving public assistance (TANF, SSI, etc.) are eligible regardless of income
  • Some programs accept kids with incomes above the federal poverty guidelines
  • Pregnant women can also receive prenatal and postpartum information, education, and services through Early Head Start

How to apply: 

Parents as Teachers 

Parents as Teachers sends professionals to visit families in their homes to help children from birth to age 5 with:

  • Learning support
  • Language development
  • Social-emotional skills
  • Physical development

Professionals evaluate children, assess family needs, and provide resources to help them. Children are also screened for concerns, and families can participate in group activities if desired.

How to get help: 

More child care help

Education help for single moms in Alaska

If you’re a single mom who wants to further her education, here are some helpful resources: 

Get a GED in Alaska

You can take the GED test in Alaska at 18 years of age. If you’re 16 or 17, you can take the test by showing either a withdrawal slip from the last school you attended in Alaska, a legal emancipation document, or written permission from a parent or guardian. There are no pre-testing or studying requirements.

The GED test has four main areas of testing:

  • Mathematical Reasoning
  • Reasoning through Language Arts
  • Science
  • Social Studies

You have two options for taking the test in Alaska: 

  • Online at-home test – $36.00 per subject
  • In person at a test center – $30 per subject

Grants and scholarships in Alaska

The Federal Student Aid connects students and prospective students with grants and scholarships available in Alaska. To find out which scholarships and grants you may be eligible for, create a student profile on the Federal Student Aid website. 

Individual schools also offer need-based and academic scholarships for their students. If you’ve been accepted to a higher education institution, contact their office of financial aid to learn how to apply. 

More education help: 

Employment help for single moms in Alaska

Workforce programs in Alaska provide training and assist with employment:

Alaska Connect

Alaska Connect is a year-round online training platform that provides job skills and technical training, including certifications, in a wide range of training areas. You can attend virtual trainings, conferences, and take advantage of other offerings. 

How to get help: 

Alaska Job Center Network

The Alaska Job Center Network offers employment and training services, career counseling, and job search assistance. 

How to get help: 

More employment help: 

Charity organizations in Alaska

There are a number of charitable organizations throughout Alaska that offer support to single moms:

The Salvation Army of Alaska

The Salvation Army helps with:

  • Food, shelter, and clothing
  • Medication costs
  • Education and job training
  • Christmas presents
  • Rent and utility bills
  • Substance abuse rehabilitation
  • Youth services
  • Emergency disaster response


Each Salvation Army branch determines its own eligibility criteria for different programs. 

How to get help: 

Visit the Salvation Army website to find your local chapter. 

Catholic Social Services of Alaska

Catholic Charities helps with:

  • Housing and rent relief 
  • Utility assistance
  • Food assistance
  • Health care assistance

How to get help: 

  • Learn more about specific addresses and food bank dates and times at this website
  • Phone: 907-222-7300

United Way of Alaska

The United Way of Alaska connects people in need with local resources like: 

  • Food
  • Shelter
  • Child care services
  • Housing
  • Health care
  • Support groups

How to get help: 

Not your state? Select yours here: founder Emma Johnson is an award-winning business journalist, activist, author and expert. A former Associated Press reporter and MSN Money columnist, and National Jeweler editor, Emma has appeared on CNBC, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR, TIME, The Doctors, Elle, O, The Oprah Magazine. Winner of Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web” and a New York Observer “Most Eligible New Yorker," her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was a New York Post Must Read. As an expert on divorce and gender, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality and multiple state legislature hearings. Her next book, The 50/50 Solution, is out March, 2024 with Sourcebooks. More about Emma's credentials.

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