What are ALICE Families? And what do they have to do with snow geese?
In Kent County, we know that when the snows fly, it is mighty cold.
Unlike the north where when the snow flies, they know it is cold. Up north, the snow is obvious and all around. In Kent County the snows are not always seen. ALICE Families, however, know that when the snows fly, their life has become even more difficult. With the cost of living higher than what they earn, ALICE Families – an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed – have income above the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), but not high enough to afford a basic household budget that includes housing, childcare, food, transportation, and health care.
The Kent County Cares Foundation is developing a program to help ALICE Families. Some families have come to the Department of Social Services and been evaluated to see if they are eligible for benefits. The guidelines are State or Federal and not up to determination by the caseworkers. Despite their best efforts, some families have a little too much income or assets, but clearly would benefit from some assistance. The caseworkers and managers have asked if we could look at helping these families. We will begin to provide some assistance on a one-time basis, for now, for some families who fall into this category to help with rent, utilities or childcare.
We are hoping to give $500 to an ALICE family to assist in the payment of these necessities. Currently, our funds are limited, but we are seeking grant opportunities and contributions are welcome.
If you would like to help, go to our donate page which then will direct you to the MASSB webpage. When you donate to them (our parent organization), let them know it is for Kent County, we will be able to make this program a real success. Our funds will be used to assist only those living in Kent County.
The ALICE families who will receive the benefits from this fund will already have been carefully screened by Kent County Department of Social Services (KCDSS). The Kent County CARES Foundation will receive these requests from the KCDSS with all identifying information deleted to maintain the anonymity of the families and the payments would be made directly to the landlord, utility company or childcare provider of the recipient family.
We believe this is a unique program and unique opportunity to help our neighbors in need.