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State Financial Resources

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LIHEAP Energy Bill Assistance

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Financial assistance programs in Iowa.

Find how to get financial assistance and grant money in all cities and counties in Iowa listed below, including Des Moines and Cedar Rapids. Government assistance programs as well as non-profits provide grants to help pay rent or utility bills or pass out free stuff to struggling households. Or get information on financial assistance as well as cash grant  programs for low income families, free medical or dental care, and other social services in Iowa..

Medicaid and Well Kids in Iowa (Hawk-i)
This government health insurance program helps families with children under the age of 19 (Hawk-i/CHIP) and Medicaid is for any low income and/or disabled person. The insurance provides free or heavily discounted healthcare insurance coverage for low-income families to help them pay medical bills, including exams, prescriptions and more.  Telephone number is 1-800-257-8563 or 1-855-889-7985.

Child Care Assistance (CCA)
This can help pay for child care bills and expenses for lower income families if the parent or guardian is working, training for a job, or pursuing education. Free subsidized daycare in Iowa is meant to encourage employment. Dial 866-448-4605 for DHS customer service for the benefit, or click here for details on free child care in Iowa.

SNAP Food Assistance
This program promotes the general welfare of lower income individuals and families by raising their levels of nutrition to help them avoid malnutrition and hunger. EBT cards help low income families, the working poor and others pay for groceries. Call 1-877-347-5678, or read more on food stamp EBT card assistance.

Social Services and Cash Assistance in Iowa
The Department of Human Services in Iowa can provide government cash assistance and financial aid to low income families. Programs can offer medical care, including Medicaid and Medicare. The government has grant help with bills, food, and energy bill assistance. More info on Iowa public assistance.

Family Investment Program (FIP)
This is Iowa's Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program. FIP will provide cash grants to low income families as they become self-supporting. Assistance is offered so that the children may be cared for in their own homes or in the homes of close relatives. Contact your local Iowa County Department of Human Services. Call 1-800-972-2017.




Promise Jobs
This program will assist with career as well as job training services. They help coordinate work for people in families eligible for FIP cash assistance. Education and job training, among other services, are offered. Call 1-800-972-2017

Mortgage Assistance Programs
The state of Iowa created several programs that provide mortgage help. Counseling as well as financial support is for people who are struggling with their mortgage payments or who may be facing a foreclosure. Read more on Iowa mortgage help.

In addition, the state created a voluntary foreclosure mediation program that will help borrowers and homeowners meet with a neutral third party to find a solution. Learn more free foreclosure mediation programs.

Various non-profit organizations across Iowa also offer housing and foreclosure solutions. May of them provide free support and are also federal government certified. Continue with Iowa HUD counseling.

Rural Iowa and Farmers
there are various government and non-profit resources that help the rural community. Everything from low cost loans for a business or paying bills, employment programs, retraining, grants and more may be available. Read about assistance for rural America.

Emergency Financial Aid, Case Management, and Referrals
If you are faced with an unexpected emergency, call your nearest Salvation Army Center in Iowa. The non-profit operates from dozens of locations across the state. Programs help with energy bills, housing, food, gasoline vouchers and more. Click here Salvation Iowa assistance programs and social services.

Free Legal Advice
Low income families can receive assistance from pro-bono attorneys and paralegals. Lawyers help individuals across Iowa on a wide range of civil legal matters. More on Iowa free legal aid programs.





Housing and Rental Assistance Vouchers in Iowa
Low income families can receive help from Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Public Housing Authorities from the section 8 program. Read more on Section 8 HUD in Iowa.

Homeless Prevention and Emergency Shelter
When funding is available, community action agencies (see below) may be able to assist Iowa families who are behind on their rent, facing eviction or a utility shut off. It will be one time, crisis aid and is often combined with family development programs.

Help for Disabled
Iowa administers programs for those with a disability as well as their family members. Resources range from free food, transportation, and medical care to financial aid for housing or paying energy bills. Many of the resources are run in partnership with non-profits and federal government SSDI programs. More on Iowa disability programs.

Iowa Medication Voucher Program
This program is being created by the Iowa Prescription Drug Corporation. It will help eligible lower and moderate income Iowans pay for various medications such as those for high blood pressure, depression, diabetes, elevated cholesterol, and pregnancy prenatal care. The program will pay for tens of thousands of prescription medicines as well as insulin. Call 1-866-282-5817, or find more details on how to enroll into patient assistance programs.

Embrace Iowa
A program that is sponsored by the Des Moines Register. It will assist Iowans who need immediate financial assistance for paying bills if they are unable to receive help through other existing programs. 515.447.4222. Read more on Ebrace Iowa.

Free Health Care from Clinics
With about twenty percent of the population lacking health insurance, and many more classified as low income, clinics are a great option for medical care. Learn more on Iowa free community clinics.

Additional support is provided to families that do not have health insurance or that are underinsured. Federal government and state of Iowa resources can provide medical bill assistance, check ups, prescription medications, discounts, and more to qualified low income patients. More on Iowa uninsured health care.

Dental Services, Check Ups, and Care
Various clinics, per above, help with medical and general health care needs. However a number of other dental centers focus on providing free or low cost dental assistance. Continue with free dental clinics in Iowa.

Employment Programs and Emergency Government Grants
If you need a job, a new skill, self-sufficiency, or financial aid for basic needs, then call a community action agency. The non-profits offer a number of services to low income families, the unemployed, and low income. Read more community action agencies in Iowa.







Iowa Free Food Assistance and Banks
Hundreds of centers operate across the state and provide free food and perishable items to people who need help. The facilities are determined to reduce or eliminate hunger across Iowa. They are mostly private, non-profit organizations. Click here free food pantries in Iowa.

Financial Aid for Rental Expenses to Stop Evictions or Security Deposits
Using a combination of federal and state of Iowa funds, agencies provide eviction prevention assistance, information on low income housing, and mediation. The intent is to reduce homelessness, and there may also be grants to pay the security deposit on a new home for those families that need a place to live. Learn more on homeless prevention in Iowa.

Help for Seniors
The main organization for older Iowa residents to call for assistance is the Area Agency on Aging. This government affiliated agency offers senior citizens and individuals over 55 a number of financial assistance and other programs. Learn about services offered by the Iowa Agency on Aging.

Heating and Energy Bills
Iowa families and individuals have several different government as well as charitable assistance programs available to them that can help them pay their energy or heating bills. Some are offered by the government, but most are administered directly by the utility companies. Read more Iowa energy bill help.

Iowa Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
The government assistance program will support eligible households in the payment of a part of their heating bills, electricity and sometimes air conditioning. The program has an energy crisis intervention component that is designed to provide immediate assistance to address potentially life-threatening situations. It is also combined with free home improvements from weatherization (below).

  • Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP)-  WAP was established to help reduce the cooling and heating bills for low income persons, particularly the disabled, elderly, single mothers and children. The goal of the government funded grant program is to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.

The client education part of the LIHEAP program provides free grants for activities that promote energy awareness, encourage regular utility payments, and also encourage saving energy. This is combined with emergency utility bill help. More on Iowa LIHEAP.

Assistance From Iowa Cities and Counties

Select a county or city below for more local grant money, free items, or financial help. As each county in Iowa has local charities, social services and churches that help low income families.

Adair County (Greenfield)

Adams County (Corning)

Benton County (Vinton)

Black Hawk County (Waterloo)

Cass County (Atlantic)

Cerro Gordo County (Mason City)

Crawford County (Denison)


Emmet County (Estherville)





Fremont County (Sidney)

Hamilton County (Webster City)

Hardin County (Eldora)

Harrison County (Logan)

Iowa County (Marengo)

Jasper County (Newton)

Johnson County (Iowa City)

Jones County (Anamosa)

Linn County (Cedar Rapids)

Fremont County, Harrison County, Mills County, Montgomery County, Monona County, Shelby County. More.

Madison County (Winterset)

Marshall County (Marshalltown)

Mills County (Glenwood)

Monona County (Onawa)

Montgomery County (Red Oak)

Muscatine County

Page County (Clarinda)

Polk County (Des Moines)

Pottawattamie County (Council Bluffs)

Poweshiek County (Montezuma)

Ringgold County (Mount Ayr)

Scott County (Davenport)

Shelby County (Harlan)

Sioux County (Orange City)

Story County (Nevada)

Tama County (Toledo)

Taylor County (Bedford)

Union County (Creston)

Washington County

Woodbury County (Sioux City)


By Jon McNamara

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