Work First Cash Assistance
Work First is North Carolina’s Temporary Assistance for the Needy Families (TANF) program. This program helps parents support themselves and their families by offering short-term training and other services to increase the chances of employment.
Benefit Diversion is an alternative to traditional cash assistance and helps families who are experiencing a temporary crisis associated with employment.
Benefit Diversion is an optional package of services that include:
- A one-time lump-sum payment equal to a maximum of three months of Work First Family Assistance benefits
- Medicaid and Food and Nutrition Services
- Referrals to child care and other community and agency resources
- Employment services
Families who are experiencing a financial emergency may be eligible for financial help to pay for housing and utilities.
Families that meet the following criteria may be eligible:
- The family must have a child who lives with a relative as defined for Work First Family Assistance
- Total income must be at or below 200% of poverty level
- The family has proof of identity and citizenship
How to Apply
Work First applicants are required to register for the First Stop Employment Assistance Program with the Employment Security Commission (ESC). Failure to register results in the family's ineligibility for Work First Family Assistance.