Chisago County administers many state and federal programs that provide aid for those in need. There are many different types of assistance programs that help with food, child care and much more.
Financial Assistance Programs
Financial Assistance programs assist families and individuals with low-income transition to economic stability. A number of financial programs are available for adults and families if eligibility requirements are met.
- How to Apply for Cash, Emergency, Food Programs
- Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP)
- Diversionary Work Program (DWP)
- General Assistance
- Employment Services Requirements (MFIP, DWP, SNAP)
- Minnesota Supplemental Aid
- Housing Support
- Refugee Cash Assistance
How to Apply for Cash, Emergency, Food programs
A Combined Application Form must be completed, or you can apply for benefits online on the State of MN Website.
There is a Combined Application Form (DHS-5223) on the State of MN Website that will allow you to download and complete for form electronically or you can print the form to complete it by hand.
Along with the completed application you may need an interview. Your application will be screened when you turn it in, and you will be scheduled for the next available interview. Unless you meet certain criteria, your interview will most likely not be the same day.
Please bring the following to your interview:
- Proof of Identity (driver's license, passport, etc.)
- Proof of Residency (driver's license, bill, etc.)
- Proof of Income (pay stubs, bank statements, etc.)
- Other documentation which provides information regarding your income and financial status, including assets.
Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP)
Minnesota Family Investment Program is the primary program to assist low-income families with children move out of poverty through work. Families participating in MFIP qualify for healthcare, childcare, employment services, and food support. The MFIP program helps participants entering the job market to achieve success in the work force. Assistance for most families is limited to 60 months.
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) is a county-administered, federal program that assists people and families with low incomes to purchase food and better meet their nutritional needs.
The program is not intended to supply all of a person's or family's food needs. Instead, it supplements those needs while the person or family makes an effort to become self-supporting and help them achieve or maintain their independence.
How to Apply for Cash, Emergency, Food Programs
For additional information, check out our Food Support Program Page.
Diversionary Work Program (DWP)
Diversionary Work Program is a four-month program designed to help low-income persons find employment. The goal of DWP is to guide individuals directly into the workforce, rather than financial assistance. After an employment plan is established, participants are eligible for assistance with their most basic needs. DWP focuses intensely on services to assess family strengths and break down barriers to employment.
General Assistance is a state-funded program that provides financial assistance to assist with food, housing, and other basic needs for adults without minor children who are not eligible for other state or federal programs.
As a result of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 and the state and federal anti-poverty funds that are provided by it, Chisago County contracts with Central Minnesota Jobs and Training Services (CMJTS) in North Branch to provide employment opportunity services.
Participants in these services are referred by Chisago County Eligibility Workers to CMJTS Employment Counselors. An employment plan is determined based on available resources the Employment Counselor, CMJTS, and Chisago County have to offer and the employment interests of the participant.
CMJTS Employment Services
CMJTS delivers career services through the CareerForce Career Lab in North Branch, open Monday thru Friday by appointment for jobseekers from 8:00 a.m. until Noon and 1:00 p.m. until 4:30 p.m.
Services include access to computers, phones, and fax for job search-related activities. Contact CMJTS for more information by calling 651-243-5338.
The lab provides opportunities for jobseekers to access job search materials, learn how to write a resume, interview, and search for jobs. In addition, CareerForce hosts online events and workshops to help with career planning.
Minnesota Supplemental Aid
Minnesota Supplemental Aid is a state-funded program that provides cash assistance to Social Security Income (SSI) recipients, the blind, people age 65 and older, and disabled people who are age 18 and older whose income does not meet their monthly needs.
Housing Support, formerly known as Group Residential Housing, is a state-funded program that provides, at a minimum, room and board for those living in licensed group living arrangements and who receive Social Security Income, or would be eligible for SSI except for excess income, are blind, age 65 or older, disabled and age 18 or older, or meet a category of eligibility under the General Assistance Program.