The California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program is California's version of the Federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program. This program provides time-limited cash assistance to low-income families with children under age 19. Adults may receive temporary cash aid for up to 48 months during lifetime. The level of assistance is based upon a variety of factors, including family size and income level. If eligible for CalWORKs, families will automatically qualify for Medi-Cal and may also qualify for CalFresh.
The Federal Government has announced a new "public charge" rule changing the way that receiving certain public benefits affects immigrants' application for legal permanent residency (obtaining their "green card"). This rule could go into effect as soon as October 15, 2019. These changes do not affect who is eligible for public benefit programs that deliver support for health, nutrition, housing, employment, and child care. We want to help you continue to receive the assistance that you and your family are eligible to receive and need now. Not all immigrants who receive public benefits will be impacted by these changes. Local immigration attorneys and non-profit organizations may be able to provide help and legal advice.
Know your rights. Get the help you need.
Immediate Need is a cash benefit of up to $200 available to CalWORKs applicant families within 24 hours who have an emergency situation and insufficient funds to meet the need. Aid payment is made in advance of a completed determination of eligibility for CalWORKs based on an emergency situation that may include, but is not limited to the following:
• Lack of housing
• Pending eviction
• Utility shutoff notice
• Other immediate health and safety needs
How to Apply:
To apply for benefits online, please visit the C4Yourself website.
By Mail or Fax
You may download an English or Spanish application from the California Department of Social Services website. You can also request an application by calling 559-675-2300. Once completed, the application can be mailed or faxed to:
Madera County Department of Social Services
P.O. Box 569
Madera, CA 93639
Using CalWORKs Benefits
CalWORKs benefits are distributed via the Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, also known as the Golden State Advantage card. The EBT card is used like any other debit card with a four-digit PIN, and it offers you privacy when making purchases.
Beware of Scams!
Beware of Fake Smart Phone Apps and Internet scams. The State of California and Madera County will never ask you to provide private EBT-related information by phone, email or text message. Protecting your information is one of Madera County Department of Services’ main priorities.
Here are a few ways to minimize the risk of compromising your identity:
• know who you share information with;
• store and dispose of your personal information securely, especially your Social Security number;
• ask questions before deciding to share your personal information; and
• maintain appropriate security on your electronic devices.
If you receive a request to provide information in this way, contact Madera County Department of Social Services immediately at (559) 675-2406.
Beware of fake smart-phone apps and Internet, email, and text-message scams. To find out more, click here.
Policies, Procedures, & Guidelines
CalWORKs Policy & Procedures:
California Department of Social Services: http://www.cdss.ca.gov/inforesources/Letters-and-Notices