Last summer, when I wrote my Money Crashers article on the evils of payday loans, one alternative I mentioned is to use various forms of emergency aid to get you through a financial crisis. I listed several programs that could help with housing, health care, utilities, and food, but I kept thinking that there was an awful lot of information I was leaving out. I knew there were lots more programs out there, run not just by the government but also by private charities, but there just wasn't room in the article to list them all.
So, my latest Money Crashers article is an attempt to fill in the gaps. It's a complete, one-stop guide to getting financial help in an emergency, covering everything from unemployment insurance to local food pantries. I list a wide variety of programs, grouped into broad categories such as housing, food, and child care, briefly outlining what each program does, who can use it, and how to apply. If you or anyone you know is facing a financial crisis of any kind, this article should tell you everything you need to know about getting help—or at least where to find everything you need to know.
12+ Free Government & Charity Resources for Emergency Financial Assistance