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Show your mom you're the best kid ever by showering her with free gifts, services and even money that those friendly government bureaucrats make available to mothers all over the country. Matthew Lesko, the Free Government Money Guy in the question mark suits, www.lesko.com/formom wants to be a hero this Mother's Day and has put together a collection of little-know government benefit programs that are available to Moms at any age.
Did you know...
1) Your Mom Can Get A Copy Of The Census Form That Her Mother Filled OutOriginal census forms are available to the public from 1930 back to 1850
2) Millionaire Moms Can Get Free Legal Help Collecting Child SupportDad may not be happy, but you can hook up you Mom to a government office that will track down any deadbeat dad.
3) Free Child Safety Seats Are Available All Over The CountryThe SAFEKIDS campaign and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides this program
4) Moms Over 55 Can Take Free College Courses And Earn Free DegreesThere are 350 colleges around the country that offer such programs
5) Free Computers Are Available For Moms Who Home-School Their KidsThese are used computers but in good working order.
6) Free Money And Help For Divorced Moms To Get A Great Job
There are also government programs that give free money and help to start a home-based business, free books for their kids, and great day care for only $9 a week. See below for details on these and other government benefits you can use to surprise your mom for Mother's Day.
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If you are at a loss as to that perfect gift, then what about an American flag flown over the Capitol? These cost between $13.25 to $22.55 plus shipping and handling, depending on the size of the flag. The flags also come with a certificate listing the name of the person for whom the flag was flown and the date. You can request a specific day, such as a birthday, anniversary or even the day someone was discharged from the military. The flags are available for purchase through your representatives in the House and Senate. The program has become so popular that the government has set up a website to provide information on ordering a flag, http://www.capitolflags.gov or contact your representatives at http://www.senate.gov, http://www.house.gov. You can also check your local phone book for the numbers to your Representative or Senator. (Income Eligibility: None).
Look better, feel better, and have energy to spare. The only thing you might need is more time off. Diets are a dime a dozen, but the government has the facts on which systems work and which don't. For information about losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight contact: Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, 5100 Paint Branch Parkway, College Park, MD 20740-3835; 888-INFO-FDA or 888-SAFEFOOD; www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/wh-wght.html; or President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, Department W; 200 Independence Ave., SW, Room 738-H, Washington, DC 20201; 202-690-9000; Fax: 202-690-5211; http://www.fitness.gov ; or the Weight-Control Information Network, 1 WIN Way, Bethesda, MD 20892-3665; 877-946-4627; Fax: 202-828-1028; Email: email@example.com; http://win.niddk.nih.gov/ (Income Eligibility: None).
Your grandma's Census records can provide a wealth of information. Census data starts in 1790 and can get you started on your family tree. From 1850 to 1930, details are provided for all individuals in each household, such as:* names of family members * their ages at a certain point in time * their state or country of birth * their parent's birthplaces * year of immigration * street address * marriage status and years of marriage * occupation(s) * value of their home and personal belongings * the crops that they grew The data is available on microfilm. For information on how to access this information, contact National Archives and Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Rd., College Park, MD 20740; 866-272-6272; http://www.archives.gov. The following website at the Census Bureau also provides some basic search facts: www.census.gov/prod/2000pubs/cff-2.pdf (Income Eligibility: None).
No matter what your income, you can get the most powerful organization in the world, your government, to fight for you to:* Establish paternity;* Set up a court order for child support;* Track down a missing parent and collect your child support; * Get the courts to adjust child support orders when circumstances change.
Actually I lied. There are a few states that may charge you up to $25.00. So the maximum you will pay is $25.00. So, why hire an attorney, who may or may not know the law, and will charge you up to $200 an hour, when you can call someone who wrote the law, whose duty is to enforce it for you, and who is free? Contact your state Child Support Enforcement Office, or contact Office of Child Support Enforcement, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW, Washington, DC 20447; 202-401-9383; www.acf.dhhs.gov/programs/cse/. (Income Eligibility: None).
RxHope is a free online database in which health care providers can apply for patient assistance for prescription drugs. Applications for these drugs must be submitted online by your doctor or nurse. RxHope also offers an assistance finder, which matches patient information against other available federal, state and charitable prescription drug programs, all of which have the application forms available online. To search the database, go to: http://www.rxhope.com/ or contact RxHope, 254 Mountain Avenue, Bldg. B, Suite 303, Hackettstown, NJ 07840; 1-908-850-8004; http://www.rxhope.com/; Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgApplication: http://www.rxhope.com/pap_selectdrug.asp or http://www.rxhope.com/pap_info.asp Income Eligibility: Each program and prescription drug application will have its own eligibility requirements.
Many married taxpayers choose to file a joint tax return because of certain benefits this filing status allows. Both taxpayers are jointly and individually responsible for the tax and any interest or penalty due on the joint return even if they later divorce. This is true even if a divorce decree states that a former spouse will be responsible for any amounts due on previously filed joint returns. One spouse may be held responsible for all the tax due even if all the income was earned by the other spouse. In some cases, a spouse (or former spouse) will be relieved of the tax, interest, and penalties on a joint tax return. Three types of relief are available: 1) Innocent spouse relief; 2) Relief by separation of liability; 3) Equitable relief. Publication 971, Innocent Spouse Relief, explains these types of relief, who may qualify for them, and how to get them. You can also use the Innocent Spouse Tax Relief Eligibility Explorer at www.irs.gov to see if you qualify for innocent spouse relief. Click on "Individuals," "Innocent Spouses," and "Explore if you are an Eligible Innocent Spouse." For more information contact the IRS at 800-829-1040 or go to http://www.irs.gov/publications/p971/index.html . (Income Eligibility: None)
The AQHA Female Equestrian Award is a $2,000 grant awarded to honor an outstanding female equestrian and reward her for her accomplishments as a horsewoman and as an athlete. Female equestrians with national ranking who exhibit leadership, sportsmanship, and commitment to the sport and its athletes are eligible. Contact: Women's Sports Foundation, Eisenhower Park, East Meadow, NY 11554; (516) 542-4700 or (800) 227-3988; Fax: (516) 542-4716; Website: http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org; E-mail: email@example.com (Income Eligibility: None).
The Women, Infant and Children (WIC) Program's mission is to safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, and children up to age 5 who are at nutritional risk by providing nutritious foods to supplement diets, information on healthy eating, and referrals to health care. A family of four can make up to $34,873 and still qualify! WIC foods include iron-fortified infant formula and infant cereal, iron-fortified adult cereal, vitamin C-rich fruit and/or vegetable juice, eggs, milk, cheese, peanut butter, dried beans or peas, tuna fish and carrots. In addition to the regular WIC program, a majority of the states have chosen to operate the WIC Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP), established in 1992, it provides additional coupons to WIC participants that they can use to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables at participating farmers markets. Contact Supplemental Food Programs Division, Food and Nutrition Service - USDA, 3101 Park Center Drive, Alexandria, VA 22302; 703-305-2746; Fax: 703-305-2196; Website: www.fns.usda.gov/fns/
Getting Your Child Ready for School, Parents as Partners Series is just one of a million bibliographic reports on educational-related resources in the ERIC database. You can download many of these articles at no cost. Contact ERIC Project, c/o Computer Sciences Corporation, 4483-A Forbes Boulevard, Lanham, MD 20706; 800-LET-ERIC; www.eric.ed.gov; (Income Eligibility: None)
Looking for a prison inmate: The Federal Bureau of Prisons has an inmate locator service for those inmates in Federal prisons. Check it out online at www.bop.gov/iloc2/LocateInmate.jsp (Income Eligibility: None).
Choosing child care is a very important decision for parents to make. Local Child Care Resources and Referral (CCR&R) organizations can help you. They can make referrals; provide information on state licensing requirements, availability of child care subsidies and other information. You can find your local CCR&R on the web site below. The Child Care Connector is a search engine to research the child care options in your area. They also publish many brochures including: Finding Help Paying for Child Care, Choosing Quality Child Care for a Child with Special Needs, Matching Your Infant's or Toddler's Style to the Tight Child Care Setting and more for no charge online or they will send you one in the mail. Contact Child Care Aware, 3101 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 350, Arlington, VA 22201; 800-424-2246; www.childcareaware.org. (Income Eligibility: None)
The child tax credit is a credit on your taxes up to $600 for each of your children. This will increase in stages up to $1,000 in 2010. To be able to take this credit you must meet certain requirements. The credit is limited to people with an income below a certain modified adjusted gross income level. The instructions and worksheet needed to figure this credit are included in the 1040 or 1040A tax return packets. If you are claiming an adoption credit, mortgage interest credit, or District of Columbia first time homebuyers credit, you must use Publication 972 from the IRS to figure your child tax credit. You can download that publication and Form 8812, referred to above, from the IRS website at www.irs.gov. To receive them by Fax-On-Demand, call 703-368-9694 or call 800-TAX-FORM (829-3676) to have them sent by mail or go to http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=106182,00.html. (Income Eligibility: Ranges from $55,000 to $110,000, depending on if you're married or not and if you're filing jointly or separately.)
One county in Oregon has a program that takes you and your child to day care and work. North Carolina has programs where counties are given vans to transport people back and forth to work, with lower fees for those in welfare-to-work programs. Mississippi has a program that will pick you up and take you back and forth to work, if you are working to get off welfare. Some communities, like Fairfax County, in Virginia, maintain a database that helps locate the necessary transportation for work and day care needs. And Kentucky operates an 800 hotline that tries to solve any work-related transportation need. To start looking for programs like this in your area, contact your local Congressman's office or your local social services agency. They won't know about all the programs but can probably give you some starting places. You should also find out about local vanpool and rideshare programs. Your local chamber of commerce or library should have this kind of information. (Income Eligibility: Varies by program and location; contact your local program to find out more about eligibility requirements in your area.)
The American Association of University Women Educational Foundation funds a broad array of academic research, career development, and community projects for women. The foundation provides fellowships and grants to women who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents for educational, special projects, and professional support. The foundation offers several types of funding, including American Fellowships, which provide funding between $6,000 and $30,000 to women doctoral candidates completing dissertations, or scholars seeking funds for post-doctoral research leave from accredited institutions. Career Development Grants, ranging from $2,000 to $8,000, are available to women in the early stages of graduate study, or women preparing for a change in career, re-entering the work force, or advancing their current careers. Community Action Grants are two-year seed money grants of $5,000 to $10,000, available for programs or non degree research projects that promote education and equity for women and girls. In addition, the foundation offers Eleanor Roosevelt Teacher Fellowships up to $5,000 for full-time K-12 women teachers. Selected Professions Fellowships, ranging from $5,000 to $12,000, are given to women in the following degree programs: architecture, computer/information sciences, engineering, and mathematics/statistics (business administration, law, and medicine are also offered, but only to women of color). Contact American Association of University Women Educational Foundation, 1111 16th St. N.W., Washington, DC 20036-4873; 202-728-7602. Application address: 2201 N. Dodge St., Dept. 148, Iowa City, IA 52243-4030; 319-337-1716, ext. 148; Fax: 202-463-7169; http://www.aauw.org; email: firstname.lastname@example.org (Income Eligibility: None).
Free assistance to women and girls who are facing sex, or race discrimination, sexual harassment at work or at school, pregnancy, discrimination, or problems with family medical leave and other employment issues related specifically to women. The staff offers information and answers questions, and occasionally can draft "demand" letters, demanding that an employer or other person or organization stop doing something. In some circumstances, they can help you pursue internal grievance or administrative procedures, and in some precedent-setting cases, they will provide legal representation. Contact Equal Rights Advocates, 1663 Mission Street, Suite 250, San Francisco, CA 94103; 415-621-0672; Fax: 415-621-6744; Advice and Counseling Line: 800-839-4ERA; www.equalrights.org. (Income Eligibility: None)
Seven days a week, 24 hours a day, you can call the hotline and not only get access to sources that will solve your immediate problem, but also get information and sources in your area that can explain your legal options and get you through the legal process. Contact National Domestic Violence Hotline, P.O. Box 161810, Austin, TX 78716; 800-799-7233; www.ndvh.org or Email: email@example.com. (Income Eligibility: None)
Not only does the government offer free lunches for school children, but your younger children can also receive free meals at day care centers, family day care homes, and more. Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) provides nutritious meals to 2.6 million children and 74,000 adults who receive day care outside of their home. CACFP reaches even further to provide meals to children residing in homeless shelters, and snacks and suppers to youths participating in eligible after school care programs. CACFP reimburses participating centers and day care homes for their meal costs. It is administered at the Federal level by the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The State education or health department administers CACFP, in most States. Programs include:
Child Care Centers Adult Day Care Centers Family Day Care Homes Homeless Shelters After School Care ProgramsContact FNS Public Information, 3101 Park Center Drive, Room 926, Alexandria, VA 22302; 703-305-2281; www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/care/cacfp/cacfphome.htm. (Income Eligibility: Family of 4 - $25,155. This varies from county to county so you must check with your local office to determine eligibility.)
The Women's Business Ownership Office runs seminars on how women can use creative ways to locate financing if they've been turned down for loans by regular banks. For more information about these seminars, contact the Office of Women's Business Ownership, U.S. Small Business Administration, 409 3rd St., SW, Washington, DC 20416; 800-8-ASK-SBA; 202-205-6673; http://www.sba.gov/womeninbusiness/welcome.html (Income Eligibility: Determined on a case-by-case basis.)
Some of the 850 Planned Parenthood clinics will help women seeking an abortion during the first 14 weeks of pregnancy starting at $350 for those not covered by health insurance. In some cases they even have special funds to help women pay for services. To investigate what your local clinic offers, call 1-800-230-PLAN. Contact Planned Parenthood Federation of America, 434 West 33rd Street, New York, NY 10001; 800-230-7526, 212-541-7800, Fax: 212-245-1845; www.plannedparenthood.org. There is another consumer hotline that can also handle your abortion-related questions: Contact The National Abortion Federation, 1755 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20036; 800-772-9100 or in Canada 800-424-2282; www.prochoice.org/. (Income Eligibility: None)
The Salvation Army is concerned about the happiness of children, so they operate many children's homes and nurseries. In additions there are 239 camps children can attend as well as over 400 clubs. The Salvation Army wants to offer children a healthy alternative, so they can live their lives to the fullest. Contact the Salvation Army Office near you, or Salvation Army National Headquarters, 615 Slaters Lane, P.O. Box 269, Alexandria, VA 22313; 703-684-5500; www.salvationarmyusa.org. (Income Eligibility: Must be in financial need)
There are hospitals that give out free child safety seats as you leave with your new baby, with no questions asked and no income requirements. Local police and fire departments inspect child safety seats to see that they are in proper order and properly installed, and sometimes provide free seats to those whose current equipment is not considered safe. Local organizations, like the Easter Seals Society were part of a federal program that gives out millions of dollars worth of free seats because of a settlement the U.S. Department of Transportation made with General Motors. Other groups will lend you a seat for as little as $5. The state of Minnesota alone has over 225 such programs.To find a program near you, contact your local police or fire department. Or contact your state information operator listed in the Appendix and ask them for your state office for Highway Safety or Traffic Safety. These national organizations may also be able to give you a local source:National SAFEKIDS Campaign, 1301 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Suite 1000, Washington, DC 20004; 202-626-0600; Fax 202-393-2072; www.safekids.orgNational Highway Traffic Safety Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh St., SW, Washington, DC 20590; 888-327-4236 or Auto Safety Hotline: 800-424-9393; www.nhtsa.dot.gov (Income Eligibility: None)
They offer a venture capital forum that prepares and showcases 20-25 women-led high-growth businesses to local investors along with other assistance educational programs; access to information, experts and investors needed to grow a business for alumni; and a virtual boot camp. Contact Springboard Enterprises, 2100 Foxhall Road, NW, Washington, DC 20007, 202-242-6282, Fax: 202-242-6284, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, www.springboardenterprises.org (Income Eligibility: None)
Local non-profits around the country get grants from the United Way or other institutions and offer free and sliding scale day care services. The United Way spends about a third of its funds, about $1 billion a year, on programs for children and families.For example, the Community Partnerships for Children Program in Brockton, MA provides child care for a family of 2 with weekly income of $210 for only $9.00 a week, and families of 4 with income of $1,000 a week can get care for $114 a week per child. There are about 500 local United Way Information and Referral Services around the country that can point you to local groups that can help you solve your child care problems. Look in the phone book for your local United Way agency, or contact United Way of America, 701 N. Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2045; 703-836-7112; www.unitedway.org (Income Eligibility: Determined on a case-by-case basis.)
If you're interested in finding out more about women in the workforce, including trends and future projections, you might find the following free publications informative:Characteristics of Self-Employed WomenDevelopments in Women's Labor Force ParticipationEmployed Women About as Likely as Men to be Looking for JobsMarriage, Children and Women's Employment: What Do We KnowMarried Women, Work and ValuesMuch Variation in Women's Employment Across Metropolitan Areas-Second-Chance' Strategies for Women Who Drop Out of SchoolTwenty Facts on Women WorkersWomen Business OwnersWomen in High-Tech JobsWomen in Jobs (Recessions)Women in Jobs (Recoveries)Women at the MillenniumWomen's Share of Labor Force to Edge Higher by 2008Differences in Women's and Men's Earnings by AgeIncome and Spending Patterns for Working WomenWomen in Managerial, Professional Occupations Earn More Than OthersWomen's Earning's: An OverviewJob Absence Rate Higher for Women Than for MenWomen in the Construction Workplace: Providing Equitable Safety and HealthProtectionWork Injuries and Illnesses Occurring to Women
These titles can also be accessed online at www.dol.gov/dol/audience/aud-women.htm. Contact the Women's Bureau, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave., NW, Room S-3002; Washington, DC 20210; 800-827-5355 or 202-693-6710. (Income Eligibility: None)
Many service organizations have organized community service days, where the town is beautified along with certain homes in need of repair. Christmas in April is a national organization with over 185 affiliates that gather together volunteers to help rehabilitate the homes of low-income homeowners. The work is done for free with the goal being to provide a safe and secure home for those in need. An example of a program in the Dallas area is the Volunteer Home Repair and Weatherization Program. This program provides home repairs that improve the health, safety, and energy efficiency of a home for low-income homeowners. Contact your city government, your county government and your local community development office to learn about local programs..In the Dallas area, contact Volunteer Home Repair and Weatherization Program, Center for Housing Resources, 3103 Greenwood, Dallas, TX 75204; 214-828-4390, Fax: 214-828-4412 (Income Eligibility: Determined on a case-by-case basis.)
Under the new law, divorced and separated women and their children can continue to receive the same health insurance coverage they had before they were divorced or separated from their husbands at the group rate. The only difference is that they must pay the premium. This law applies to all private businesses that employ more than 20 people and to federal, state, and local government plans. For more information on this law, contact Women Work, 1625 K St. NW, #300, Washington, DC 20006; 202-467-6346; Fax: 202-467-5366; www.womenwork.org. (Income Eligibility: None).
Suppose your child is sick at school and needs you in the middle of the day, but you don't have a way to get there because you go to work most days by some other way than using your car. You can probably get a free ride, taxi, or free rental car from the local "Guaranteed Ride Home Program."
You can also use the service for most family emergencies if your normal ride falls through, or if you have to work late unexpectedly. Call your local carpool or vanpool service to see if they have a similar program. Most of these programs require that you pre-register, but it is always best to plan ahead for emergencies anyway.If you do a computer search using the terms (including the quotes) "guaranteed ride home program," you will find a listing of many of the programs offered. You can also contact your state Department of Transportation for starting places. (Income Eligibility: None).
Head Start is preschool that has a great student teacher ratio and all teachers are certified in early childhood development. It prepares the children with school readiness, and research shows that these children enter kindergarten with the skills necessary to succeed. There are income requirements for acceptance into the program, but the program does allow 10% of the students to have higher incomes. And 10% of the program needs to be offered to kids who have a disability. To learn more about Head Start programs near you, contact your local board of education, the state Department of Social Services, or Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Head Start Bureau, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW, Washington, DC 20201; 202-737-1030; www.acf.dhhs.gov/programs/hsb (Income Eligibility: family of 4- $20,000, although this does vary and you should contact program to learn specific requirements for your area).
The Healthy Families America Project helps new mothers cope with the pressures of being a new parent by offering volunteer home visitors. They can show you how to deal with the physical, emotional and financial strains of a new baby. Contact Healthy Families America, 200 S. Michigan Ave., Suite 1700, Chicago, IL 60604; 312-663-3520; Fax: 312-939-8962; www.healthyfamiliesamerica.org (Income Eligibility: None).
The R.O.S.E. Fund offers four programs. The R.O.S.E. Scholarship acknowledges women and children who are survivors of abuse through a scholarship of up to $10,000 to be used toward any college or university in New England. The R.O.S.E. Scholarship at Pine Manor College annually awards one Pine Manor student who is or will be enrolled in a minimum of twelve credits per semester. The R.O.S.E. Scholarship at UMASS Boston annually awards two $2,500 scholarships to current or future UMASS Boston students who are or will be enrolled in a minimum of nine credits per semester. The R.O.S.E. Continuing Education Grants Program provides grants from $200 to $1,000 to be used toward education or work related training. Applicants must be nominated and they go to classes or school in New England. Contact The R.O.S.E. Fund, Inc., 175 Federal Street, Suite 455, Boston, MA 02110; 617-482-5400; Fax: 617-482-3443; www.rosefund.org/programs/scholarship.asp or email@example.com. (Income Eligibility: None).
The Child Care and Development Block Grant gives money to states to help families meet their child care needs. Parents may choose from a variety of childcare providers, including center-based, family childcare and in-home care, care provided by relatives, and even sectarian child care providers. You can even get money to start a day care center! To find out how to take advantage of this program in your state and to learn the eligibility requirements, contact National Child Care Information Center, 243 Church Street, NW, Vienna, VA 22180; 800-616-2242; http://nccic.org. (Income Eligibility: Varies from county to county. Contact your state to learn specific requirements).
The purpose of the Job Opportunities for Low-Income Individuals program is to award funds to organizations that will create new full-time permanent employment opportunities for certain targeted populations. Projects must: create new permanent full-time employment opportunities through one of four new job creation project design priority areas: 1) expansion of existing businesses through technical and financial assistance; 2) self-employment/micro-enterprise; 3) new business ventures; and, 4) non-traditional employment initiatives that lead to economic self-sufficiency for targeted populations. To find out more, contact the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Community Services, Division of Community Discretionary Programs, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, S.W - 5th Floor West, Washington, D.C. 20447; 202-401-5307; http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ocs/dcdp/joli/index.html (Income Eligibility: $9,800 for individual; $13,200 for couple).
Many Federal government contracting offices are trying to insure that a certain percentage of their contracts go to women entrepreneurs. Most even have special offices that will help women entrepreneurs sell to their agencies. For help in selling your product or service to the government, contact your State Economic Development Office in your state capital or the Office of Women's Business Ownership, Small Business Administration, 409 Third Street SW, Sixth Floor, Washington, DC 20416; 202-205-6673; www.onlinewbc.gov (Income Eligibility: None).
Twenty-seven states offer Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit on your state tax returns. About 14 of these states do not require you to pay any taxes in order to get a check. Contact one of the free tax services described above or your state tax office located in your state capital. You can call 411 and ask for this number or go to www.govengine.com and click on your state. You can also contact your local public library or your Congressman's office at www.congress.org. Also see: www.nccp.org/policy_long_description_15.html or http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/NWLCTaxCreditsOutreachCampaignToolkit2005.pdf. (Income Eligibility: None).
Believe it or not, more than 350 colleges and universities all across the country have special programs for seniors who are interested in going back to school. This often means auditing courses or taking courses for credit for free or at discounts up to 90% of the list price. They also offer discounts on fees and books, and even special deals on housing. You can attend just one course or get a PhD. Some states call it a Senior Scholar program. Anyone interested should contact the school they wish to attend to find out how to apply for a discount or waiver. Some limitations and restrictions may apply. Contact your local college or university and ask what programs they offer. (Income Eligibility: None)
Many seniors have to give up driving their cars, perhaps because of the cost or illness. But then how do they get to the doctor or the bank or the store? Many rely upon their friends and children to solve their transportation needs, but there are times when you need to come up with another alternative. The Eldercare Locator provides access to an extensive network of organizations serving older people at the state and local community levels. This service can connect you to information sources for a variety of services, including transportation. For more information, contact Eldercare Locator, National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, Washington, DC 20201; 800-677-1116 between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. EST; www.aoa.gov (Income Eligibility: None)
An estimated two million American women will be diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer in the next decade, and half a million will lose their lives from these diseases. Screening could prevent up to 20% of these deaths for women over 40. The government's Center for Disease Control will spend about $200 million a year to maintain a state-by-state program to establish greater access to screening and follow-up services. To find the program contact for your state, go to http://apps.nccd.cdc.gov/cancercontacts/npcr/contacts.asp. Each state runs their program a little differently. Most states have the following requirements: women starting at 40 or 50 years old, are underinsured or have no insurance, and have income below a certain level (usually $46,000 for a family of 4). Some states can adjust eligibility requirements for special cases. States vary in the array of services covered, but they normally include: breast and cervical cancer screening, mammograms, treatment if diagnosed with cancer, breast reconstruction or prosthesis. States that don't have direct funds for treatment often make arrangements with other facilities to provide treatment for free. If your screening has been done elsewhere, you can still receive free treatment under this program. Men diagnosed with breast cancer can also receive free treatment. Contact your county office of public health listed in your telephone book or your state Department of Health. You can also contact the main office of this program at Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 4770 Buford Highway, NE, MS K-64, Atlanta, GA 30341-3717, 770-488-4751; 888-842-6355; Fax: 770-488-4760;www.cdc.gov/cancer/nbccedp/ (Income Eligibility: Varies from program to program although usually $46,000 for family of 4).
Single parents, recently divorced women and women in transition sometimes need a helping hand. Women Work! is an organization whose mission is to help women become self-sufficient. This is accomplished by helping them get the education, training and jobs they need to be successful. Women Work! has over 1,000 programs across the country doing just that. To learn what is offered in your neighborhood, contact Women Work! 1625 K St., NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20006; 202-467-6346; 800-235-2732; Fax: 202-467-5366; www.womenwork.org. (Income Eligibility: None)
To grow and compete in the transportation marketplace, the U.S. Department of Transportation offers a variety of programs to help small, disadvantaged and women-owned firms include short-term lending for transportation-related projects, bonding assistance to provide opportunities to obtain bid, payment and performance bonds for transportation-related projects, and referrals to other sources of federal financial assistance. Contact: U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization, 400 7th Street, SW, Room 9410, Washington, DC 20590, 800-532-1169 or 202-366-5343, Fax: 202-366-7538, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, http://osdbu.dot.gov (Income Eligibility: None)
The White House Greeting Office will send a 50th Anniversary card or an 80th birthday card to your special someone from the President of the United States. What a way to show that you care enough to send the very best! You must send your request at least 6 to 8 weeks prior to the event with the recipient's name or names, their return address, and the occasion for the card. In the case of a wedding or birth send your request in after the event. Send your request to: The White House Greeting Office, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20502-0039; Fax: 202-395-1232; www.whitehouse.gov/greeting. (Income Eligibility: None).
The Federal Transit Administration provides over $50 million a year to over 1,000 local organizations to provide free non-emergency transportation for people who are old or have a disability. But the groups who get this federal money can also provide free transportation services to moms who are in a jam. The regulations state that the vehicles can also be used to "serve the transportation needs of the general public on an incidental basis." You may have to do some educating to get a local group to give you a ride.
Tell them to view the information on the web site or contact the FTA. It's available from the U.S. Federal Transit Administration, 400 7th Street SW, Washington, DC 20590 or on the web at www.fta.dot.gov/legal/federal_register/2004/16290_17856_ENG_HTML.htm.
To find groups in your area who receive these FTA Section 5310 grants for Elderly and Persons With Disabilities, contact your state department of transportation or the U.S. Federal Transit Administration, Office of Program Management, Office of Resource Management and State Programs, 400 7th St., SW, Washington, DC 20590; 202-366-4020; www.fta.dot.gov. (Income Eligibility: None)
No matter what your income, you can get the most powerful organization in the world, your government, to fight for you to establish paternity; set up a court order for child support; track down a missing parent, collect child support; and get the courts to adjust child support orders. There are a few states that may charge you up to $25. Contact your state Child Support Enforcement Office or contact Office of Child Support Enforcement, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW, Washington, DC 20447; 202-401-9383; www.acf.dhhs.gov/programs/cse/. (Income Eligibility: None)
The Second Byte Foundation provides computers to disadvantaged children. Awards are based in part, on 100-word essay written by the student on why they should receive this opportunity and how they will benefit from the computer. Kids and families receive computers through schools or other organizations that apply for the program. Contact Second Byte Foundation, 2663 Townsgate Road, Westlake Village, CA 91361; 888-263-2983; Fax: 805-495-9935; www.2ndbyte.org or email@example.com. (Income Eligibility: varies from program to program. Check with the program near you to learn specific requirements.)
Not only home schools, but any school or community group that are trying to educate kids from pre-K through grade 12, can be eligible to receive used computers from the government through its surplus property program. Contact General Services Administration, Computers for Learning Program, 1901 S. Bell Street, Rm. 815, Arlington, VA 22202; 866-472-9161 or 703-605-2888; www.computers.fed.gov/, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (Income Eligibility: Determined on a case-by-case basis.)
Elementary and secondary schools are eligible for up to 90% discounts on Internet connections according to the Passage of the Snowe-Rockefeller-Exon-Kerry Amendment Universal Service section of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. See if your school is eligible by contacting: Federal Communications Commission, 445 12th Street SWWashington, DC 20554; 888-225-5322; www.fcc.gov/learnnet/, Email: email@example.com(Income Eligibility: Determined on a case-by-case basis.)
If your child is a victim of bullies, then you should check out this website at the National Library of Medicine. It pulls together information from a wide variety of resources on bullying behavior and what you can do. There are links to state laws, research, organizations, and coping mechanisms. Don't let your child suffer. Check out the resources at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/bullying.html (Income Eligibility: None).