Public Benefits Available to Foster and Kinship Families

There are a number of public benefits that caregivers might qualify for… this is especially true if your household has grown due to the introduction of a new foster or kinship child.

Foster care payments and public benefits (e.g. subsidized childcare, CalWorks, and SNAP) can depend on:

  • Your relationship to the kinship child(ren) in your household (e.g. grand parent, sibling, neighbor).
  • Whether your relationship is “formal” (e.g. court recognized) or “informal” (e.g. an arrangement made between family members).
  • Income and household size.
  • Other resources or assets in the household.

Formal foster care payments can be as high as $850 and CalWORKs’ Non-Needy Caretaker Fund for relatives can provide around $350 per child per month.

More information from California’s Department of Social Services is here:

California’s Kinship Support Services Program (KSSP) is designed to help all kinship families succeed. More information about KSSP is here:

Regardless of your caregiver status, all kinship families are encouraged to apply for benefits to help offset the cost of food, clothing, utilities, and other expenses.

In order to learn about benefits that are available to your family KinshipCareCA has partnered with Benefit Kitchen (a Brooklyn, NY-based company) to provide a “screener”, which can help you learn about your household’s benefit eligibility. After you sign up and do the screener, Benefit Kitchen will estimate your household’s eligibility for over a dozen programs available to help California’s families.

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