Assistance for the Poor

Government Aid
There are a tremendous number of resources available at all levels of government which are designed to help people in financial need. A couple of the larger programs are the Food Stamp Program (now called SNAP) and Medicaid. If you need assistance and don't know where to turn then the food stamp program might be a good place to start. Over 37 million Americans received food stamps aid in September of 2009 which is roughly 1 in 8 Americans.

Public Charities and Private Foundations
There are also a tremendous number of charities, foundations and organizations with the goal of helping the poor. A couple examples of national organizations are Feeding America and Toys for Tots. There are probably lots of charitable organizations very near to you such as churches and other religious organizations.

Ask and Seek
It is difficult to find all the sources of aid available because there are so many programs and organizations throughout the country that focus on specific types of aid for specific situations. For example, neighborhoods across the US have things like coat drives to help underprivileged children stay warm in the winter. To find these types of opportunities in your area and for your situation you need to ask for help and seek out information. Often times organizations that provide you assistance can lead you to additional organizations that can give you assistance. Ask for help and seek out information.

Focus on the End Goal
Many of the programs that offer assistance require you to be in financial need. For example, with the Food Stamp Program your benefits are determined by your need. This creates an unfortunate dynamic where you are incentivized to be needy. To combat this dynamic, it is especially important for you remain focused on your end goal and to only view assistance as a temporary tool to help you overcome poverty's grasp.