Name one social welfare program (local, state, or federal) designed to address poverty, drawn either from the course resources or further research.
Identify and explain the program. Describe:
Who is eligible for the program
What the program provides
The goal(s) of the program
Whether you think the program is adequate at meeting the needs of those in poverty
1. A social welfare program designed to address poverty is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The purpose of this program is to provide food assistance to those in need. Often working families and even the elderly receives nutritional meals through this program. The 1964 Food Stamp Act, amended in 2008, provides monthly benefits that can be used for food at retail grocery stores (Segal et al., 2018). Food benefits for families are known as electronic benefits transfer (EBT), provided to qualified people. Eligible people receive a certain amount allotted for the month to use. This amount is based on family size and income. By qualifying for SNAP, the caseworker can see if you are eligible for other assistance programs. To review eligibility for SNAP, interested individuals must file an application for their state with information regarding household size, income, and support provided; after this, case workers review applications and either deny or approve them. The amount an individual receives is also based on income and household size. There is a list of prerequisites to qualify for SNAP. This program aims to provide support by allowing low-income families and the elderly to buy food. According to USDA Website, their goal is to increase food security and decrease hunger by giving children; and low-income families access to food, a healthy diet, and nutrition education in a way that promotes American agriculture and builds public trust in collaboration with cooperating organizations (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) | Food and Nutrition Service, 2021). They help families in need struggling to maintain a healthy lifestyle because of financial strains with nutritional education, physical exercise, or health care resources. The program can help families because some may not receive an adequate meal without it. The issues arise with this program when people try to sell benefits to purchase other items to support their families. SNAP, when utilized the correct way, can help build healthy families. Most people believe that SNAP has long-term positive effects on the education and health of children by helping to alleviate poverty within communities.
2. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is a program funded by the federal government. Each State implements TANF how that state sees fit. The goal of TANF is to help maintain healthy family relationships. Encouraging families ween off other government assistance by supporting job training, resume building, and help to find employment. Another part of TANF is helping with family planning, which includes helping keep children in their homes with either their direct or extended family.
In Washington State, these goals become successful with financial assistance, clothing vouchers and help in finding other resources that may be beneficial such as the work first program and food pantries. In Washington State, TANF is focused on parents/guardians and pregnant individuals to help their children. To be eligible for TANF in Washington State your financial resources must be of a value of less than $6,000 ( TANF and Support Services | DSHS, n.d.). In Washington State there are requirements you must follow to stay eligible. You must live in approved housing. Individuals are sometimes required to participate in work first program and/or child support program ( TANF and Support Services | DSHS, n.d.).
Unfortunately, there are many barriers to this program for many people in poverty. First, participants must live in approved housing, as I am sure most of you know, moving on limited funds is not ideal and not always possible. Families are only eligible for TANF for five years, hopefully, that is enough time, but we all need exceptions sometimes, TANF does not have exceptions to their rules.
TANF and Support Services | DSHS. (n.d.). Www.dshs.wa.gov Links to an external site. . https://www.dshs.wa.gov/esa/community-services-offices/tanf-and-support-services Links to an external site.
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