There are many ways for individuals and families to receive financial assistance in US Virgin Islands. Whether you are in need of food assistance, help with bills, or aid with a one-time emergency expense, we have you covered. Many of the programs available to residents of the US mainland are also available to residents of the US Virgin Islands, and we have included information about those programs below.
Financial Assistance in US Virgin Islands: SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
SNAP, also known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or “food stamps”, is a program that helps individuals and families with no income or very low income meet their nutritional needs.
SNAP funds are placed on an electronic card, like a debit card, and can be used to purchase food at most grocery stores. There are some items that you cannot use SNAP to purchase, including paper goods, toiletries, tobacco, alcohol, medicines and vitamins, and hot/prepared foods.
Your income and household size will help to determine whether you are eligible for SNAP, as well as the amount of SNAP funds your household will receive. For example, a household with three people, with an income of $1,830 per month or less, might receive approximately $845/month. The same household would remain eligible for SNAP with an income of up to $3,203 per month, but might receive a smaller monthly allowance.
There are a number of factors that affect a family’s eligibility and the amount of monthly funding they are allowed, so the only way to know whether you’re eligible and how much you will receive is to apply. You can also consult this chart for more information.
SNAP recipients must be US citizens or legally present qualified non-citizens. Please note that anyone born in the US Virgin Islands is a US citizen, and would therefore be eligible.
To apply for SNAP, you can print and fill out this application. The completed application and associated documents can be dropped off at Department of Human Services offices, emailed or faxed (email addresses and fax numbers are listed in the application). This application can also be used to apply for other programs, including TANF/Family Assistance programs.
For more information, contact your local Department of Human Services office.
Financial Assistance in US Virgin Islands: Family Assistance Programs
Financial assistance in US Virgin Islands from TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) are often referred to as “Family Assistance Programs”. These programs serve individuals and couples with dependent children, and individuals who are blind, disabled, or over the age of 60.
TANF / Cash Assistance
The program designed to serve families with dependent children is also known as TANF or cash assistance. This program requires that recipients have a very low income or no income. Your local Department of Human Services office can help you determine your eligibility.
It also requires that recipients work at least 30 hours per week while receiving these benefits. The upside is that transportation and childcare stipends are available for TANF recipients who are engaged in work activities.
Families enrolled in TANF will receive a monthly cash allotment on their electronic benefits card (the same card where SNAP funds are deposited). There is a lifetime limit of 60 months on TANF benefits, so it is important to notify your local Department of Human Services office if there are any increases in your income. That way, you can stop receiving your TANF benefits, pausing the 60-month “clock” in case you need additional assistance in the future.
Another option for those seeking financial assistance in US Virgin Islands is to request one-time cash emergency assistance. Recipients of one-time cash assistance must be over the age of 18, be a US citizen or permanent resident living in the US Virgin Islands, and have countable assets of no more than $2,000.
This is a good option for anyone who is struggling to pay a large expense such as a vehicle repair or medical expense, but otherwise gets by sufficiently with their monthly income.
Assistance for Disabled US Virgin Island Residents
Disabled US Virgin Island residents are eligible to receive a monthly payment in the amount of $180 per month if their resources (aside from the home they live in) do not exceed $2,000.
Assistance to Blind US Virgin Island Residents
US permanent residents and US citizens who are blind and living in the US Virgin Islands may be eligible for cash assistance in the amount of $180 per month. Recipients must not have resources exceeding $2,000 (aside from the home they live in), and vehicle equity value over $4,650.
Assistance to Old Aged US Virgin Island Residents
US permanent residents and US citizens who are over the age of 60 may be eligible for cash assistance in the amount of $180 per month. Recipients must not have resources exceeding $2,000 (aside from the home they live in), and vehicle equity value over $4,650.
The application for each of these programs is the same as the SNAP application. Your completed application and associated documents can be dropped off at Department of Human Services offices, emailed or faxed (email addresses and fax numbers are listed in the application).
For more information about financial assistance in US Virgin Islands, contact your local Department of Human Services office.