You’ve worked hard all of your life. Now that you’ve reached your golden years, you should be able to enjoy your time without having to worry about your financial situation. However, far too many senior citizens in the United States are struggling to make ends meet. The majority of people have worked and tried to put money away. Oftentimes, it simply isn’t enough to pay for everyday expenses, such as food, shelter, healthcare, and clothing. Living on a fixed income is hard enough. The constantly rising costs of virtually every necessity can make it virtually impossible.
If you are 65 years of age or older and you are experiencing financial hardship, there may be a way that you can get the assistance that you need. There are several grant opportunities that are available specifically for senior citizens. You may also find other grants and financial assistance that will help you avoid monetary strain and the stress that comes along with it.
What are Grants for Senior Citizens?
Grants are funds that are set aside by the federal government, non-profit agencies, for-profit organizations, and various other entities. Grants for seniors are intended to assist those who are aged 65 or older.
Many of the grant opportunities for senior citizens do not provide financial resourced directly to those who apply for them. Rather they are distributed to entities that provide assistance to seniors in various ways. Below, we will discuss some of the grant programs that are available for American seniors, as well as how you can apply for this free financial assistance.
1. Section 202 – Supportive Housing for the Elderly
This federal grant program is available for individuals that are 62 years of age or older who have an annual household income that is lower than the federal poverty level. This program offers options that enable the elderly to remain independent while living in a location that offers the support that they need on a daily basis; cooking, transportation, healthcare, cleaning, etc. Essentially, the Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program makes it possible for senior citizens to avoid moving into a nursing home facility, as they can use the funding provided by the program to make improvements to their homes so that they can easily execute everyday tasks.
Like all grant programs, there are stringent eligibility requirements. In order to receive funding, you must be 62 years of age or older and have an annual income of 50% or more below the average yearly income. You can find out more details about eligibility and apply for this grant by visiting the HUD office in your local area.
2. Very Low Income Housing Repair Program
Offered by the US Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (USDA), this federal grant program provides funds to very low-income seniors so that they can make repairs to their homes. For example, the funding provided by this grant can be used for mold remediation and to make a home more handicap accessible. The maximum amount distributed through this grant program is $7,500.
Eligibility requirements for the Very Low Income Housing Repair Program include being at least 62 years of age and earning an annual income lower than the federal poverty level. Additionally, applicants must live in specific rural locations where the population is 10,000 people or fewer. You can find out more about the eligibility requirements and begin the process of filing an application by visiting your local USDA agencies.
3. Capital Assistance Program for Elderly People
The Capital Assistance Program for Elderly People issues grants to non-profit organizations so that they can provide transportation for seniors in areas where public transportation is not available or is not sufficient enough to meet individual needs. Funding through this grant program is only available in rural and small urban areas. If you are a senior citizen who believes that improved transportation is needed in your area, you can speak with the Federal Transit Administration to learn more about this grant program and how it may be able to help you and other seniors in your area.
4. Administration on Aging Nutrition Program
The Administration on Aging Nutrition Program issues grants to local non-profit agencies and community organizations. They can offer senior citizens who are aged 60 or older with proper nutrition. The aim of this program is to reduce the number of hungry seniors, to improve the overall health and well-being of the elderly, and to provide healthful meals for seniors on a regular basis.
5. Foster Grandparent Program
This federal grant funds volunteer services for those who are ages 55 and older and who are living on a fixed, limited income. The goal of the program is to provide seniors with a way that they can spend time working with children in their local communities. This not only benefits youth but also benefits the elderly. The seniors who are involved with this program may work with children by teaching them how to read. They may also provide them with advice and insight, or by providing compassionate care for those who have been neglected or abused.
Seniors who are involved in the Foster Grandparent program typically spend between 15 and 40 hours a week in schools, hospitals, and day care or community centers, usually in impoverished areas.
6. Federal Pell Grant
The federal Pell Grant provides funding for low-income individuals who are interested in furthering their education. It’s a needs-based grant. That means that it is issued to those the federal government believes demonstrate a need for the funding. Often, Pell Grant recipients are younger students. However, seniors can qualify, as well, as there are no age restrictions. If you are approved, you can use the money that is provided by the Pell Grant to earn a college degree, which could be used to better your life or to simply fulfill a lifelong dream.
In conclusion, there are several grant opportunities available for senior citizens. These grants can be used to help pay for basic necessities, as well as to better your life, overall.