Arizona Family Assistance Services

The Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) works with community organizations throughout the state to connect families and children to the various financial services available to them. For instance, the family assistance program under the DES provides low-income residents with benefits, such as free food and nutrition resources. However, applicants must meet the income limit for food stamps if they wish to obtain benefits under the state’s Nutrition Assistance (NA) program. To meet food stamps Arizona income eligibility requirements, household incomes must not exceed a certain amount based on the size of their family units. Furthermore, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (known as TANF) is available to qualifying households in need of cash assistance. However, families must meet TANF requirements in order to obtain these benefits, including household income restrictions. Additionally, school lunch and breakfast programs in Arizona are available to financially needy families with children. To learn more about finding a family assistance plan in Arizona, download our comprehensive guide. For additional information on family support services in the state, review the sections below.

Arizona Family Assistance Program for Nutrition

The AZ Department of Economic Security oversees the Family Assistance Administration (FAA), a division of the DES which administers benefits, such as nutrition and cash assistance. As part of these family support services, qualifying applicants may obtain nutrition benefits under the NA program (also known as food stamps or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program/SNAP). Through this assistance program for families, beneficiaries may buy items such as food products, infant formula or vegetable seeds. To apply for food assistance, however, families must meet annual household income restrictions. If applicants do not meet income limits for food stamps, they may request appeals in order to obtain the benefits needed.

If families do not meet food stamp qualifications in Arizona, they may still qualify to obtain a three- to five-day food supply under The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). Under the TEFAP family assistance program, households receive emergency food items at participating distribution sites throughout the state. However, TEFAP family assistance plan applicants must meet household income requirements and provide proof of their identification and Arizona addresses when collecting their food items. If claimants receive benefits under the NA family assistance service, they automatically qualify for free food under the TEFAP program. To learn more about family assistance programs in AZ, download our comprehensive guide.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families in Arizona

“What is TANF assistance?” many families in Arizona may wonder. While the NA family support service provides low-income beneficiaries with money for food to help them live healthier lives, Arizona TANF provides applicants with temporary financial aid. Through this family support program, known as Cash Assistance (CA), low-income families with children receive temporary financial benefits to help them pay for basic living expenses. However, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families is only available to applicants who meet income and resource restrictions, as well as other eligibility requirements pertaining to state residency and U.S. citizenship status. Additionally, TANF assistance applicants must complete an in-person or a telephone interview as part of the screening process. After applying for the TANF family assistance program, applicants typically receive a determination letter within 45 days of applying. If applicants do not meet TANF eligibility requirements and the DES denies their applications for benefits, they may request appeals.

In some cases, these family assistance plan applicants may qualify for a one-time, lump-sum payment under the Grant Diversion Program. However, current AZ TANF recipients cannot apply for cash benefits under the Grant Diversion Program. If claimants qualify for family support services, such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or one-time payments under the Grant Diversion Program, they receive their financial aid on an Electronic Benefits Transfer card (or EBT card). While claimants may use their EBT cards outside of Arizona, they may not use the cards to purchase items in prohibited establishments, such as liquor stores or gambling casinos.

School Lunch and Breakfast Programs in Arizona

In addition to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and other Arizona family support services, such as food stamps, low-income households with school-age children may obtain benefits through several other programs. For instance, there are three school lunch and breakfast programs available to families with children who meet household income restrictions. Furthermore, these lunch and breakfast programs include the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), the Special Milk Program and the School Breakfast Program (SBP). Under the SFSP family assistance plan, low-income children younger than 18 years of age receive free food and snacks during their summer breaks from school. Under the Special Milk family assistance program, however, low-income children attending school or daycare receive free milk if the schools or childcare centers do not participate in any other federal meal assistance programs. Furthermore, the SBP family support service provides free breakfasts to low-income children to help them perform better in school. If households meet food stamps Arizona income eligibility requirements, however, their children may automatically qualify for free meals in school. To learn more about AZ school lunch and breakfast programs, download our informative guide.



What Kind of Assistance Does the Arizona Family Assistance Services Department Offer?

The state of Arizona can assist eligible families with services such as food assistance or temporary cash assistance. To assess your eligibility, you must fill out an application and provide the required documents. To learn all of the details needed to prepare for this application process, download our comprehensive guide today.


Who Is Eligible To Benefit From the Arizona Family Assistance Services?

Eligible low-income families or individuals in Arizona can benefit from programs offered by the Family Assistance Services Department. Temporary financial assistance or Nutrition Assistance services are available to those who qualify upon filing an application. To find out if your family is eligible for these benefits, download our guide now.