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How to get emergency financial assistance – Updated

Everyone needs financial assistance sometimes, but finding the resources during tough times can be difficult. There are, however, plenty of them available. They range from help with medication costs and filing for unemployment to food banks, rental and utility assistance and small business loans.

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Here are some online resources to tap into:

  • Miami Achieving Stability is providing temporary services to low-income households, with the goal of promoting housing stability for homeless individuals or those at-risk of becoming homeless. Help includes rental assistance and utility payments. The Volunteers of America, Florida provides other services as well, such as housing, health and employment services. More info: Email or call 786-369-1852.
  • Salvation Army can assist with rent/mortgage, utility bills, transportation, medicine and food.
  • is a vital resource when searching for food, housing and healthcare, the site features a comprehensive list of resources in these areas and more.
  • Healthwell Foundation helps cover with copays, premiums, deductibles and various other out-of-pocket expenses if you're underinsured and suffer from one of these 34 diseases
  • Florida Unemployment is where to go to learn about eligibility for filing of unemployment and how to properly file to receive checks.
  • Food Pantries is a comprehensive website listing organizations and houses of worship that distribute food or where you can come in and fill up a bag with food.
  • Miami-Dade Emergency Assistance includes resources for assistance with housing, utility and energy bills, transportation and home energy crisis.
  • United Way of Miami-Dade has launched the Miami Pandemic Response Fund through Operation Helping Hands, a resource for struggling families with food supplies, utilities, rent and mortgage assistance and micro-grants for small businesses.
  • City of North Miami has a variety of assistance programs for residents and business owners. Click here to read all the details on eligibility requirements and how to apply.
  • City of Miami Department of Human Services is coordinating the distribution of business grants and grocery gift cards to business and families currently struggling. 14,000 grocery cards valued at $250 each will be made available to City of Miami residents with state-issued ID and a sworn affidavit demonstrating need due to the current pandemic. Click here for details.
  • City of Hialeah Grants Department is launching three new grant opportunities for residents and business owners currently struggling. Available will be the Business Income Assistance Fund aiding business owners with rent; Rental Assistance Fund assistance for Hialeah residents paying their rent or lease; and Mortgage Assistance Fund for City of Hialeah resident homeowners. Click here for details.

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Josie Gulliksen

About Josie Gulliksen

Josie Gulliksen is a freelance writer and major arts advocate and enthusiast who loves everything cultural and is excited to live in such a thriving community as Miami. A Miami native, aside from Miami on the Cheap, she currently writes for Artburst Miami and contributes to Edible South FL and Miami Media Group. She has contributed to, Biscayne Times and Miami New Times. She worked for nearly a decade at Miami Today as Calendar Editor and arts writer and then worked for 13 years in public relations. She has her own blog Scene Around South FL at


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