Get Help - United Ways of California

We’re committed to helping every Californian access the resources
and tools they need to lead successful lives

Here’s how we can help
Get Affordable Internet

Access to the internet is crucial in everyday life. We can help you find out if you are eligible for affordable internet plans, and support you in getting connected to reliable low-cost, high-speed internet

Explore Income Supports

Use our Benefit Calculator tool to get a free screening to see if you qualify for programs like SNAP, CalWORKS, Medicaid, tax credits, and other benefits that can put thousands of dollars in your pocket.

File Your Taxes For Free

Our MyFreeTaxes program offers resources to help you file your taxes and maximize money back in your pockets. Explore our no-cost filling options and tax resources to get started filing with ease today.

Find local resources using 211

211 is a free, confidential, 24-hour service that helps people find local resources in times of need. 211 makes it easy to find food, housing, job training, after-school programs, and much more. Start your search below or dial “211” on your phone to get connected directly to trained 211 information and referral specialists who will help connect you to available resources in every corner of the state.

How can we help you?

Search food pantries, shelters, and more…
More Information

Other resources for Californians:

Food Assistance

For assistance in locating food banks in your area, please visit CA Association of Food banks. If your needs are immediate, please call 211 to speak with someone about services in your area.

If you would like to apply for Cal Fresh, visit this link to apply.

How does it work?

• Your county will call you within a week or two for an eligibility interview.

• If approved, you will get an EBT card for groceries within 10 days.

Buy groceries! EBT cards work in most food stores and farmers’ markets.

Get Affordable Internet

Get connected to reliable low-cost, high-speed internet for work or education. There is probably a carrier in your area that offers free or reduced-cost internet access for students and low-income families. Learn more.

Get Tax Assistance

United Way offers MyFreeTaxes: free state and federal tax preparation and filing services nationwide for households earning less than $66,000/year.

Through MyFreeTaxes, families can:

• Electronically file their taxes

• Connect tax filers to local in-person tax preparation and filing assistance through Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and AARP Tax Counseling (for elderly populations). To find a free help center near you, please call 800.906.9887 or search by location.

• Help people with disabilities connect with the National Disability Institute which has created systems to increase accessibility of free tax filing

Households earning more than $66,000 can also file their income taxes via MyFreeTaxes. To receive tax preparation and filing services, and connect with a local United Way in California about health, education, and financial stability resources, please visit

Health Care Resources

United Ways of California is an active partner with Covered California. It’s the only place to get federal premium assistance to help you buy private insurance from a range of plans. That means you may qualify for a discount on private insurance or get free health insurance through the state’s Medi-Cal program. Either way, you’ll get great health coverage. Premiums are available for people up to 600% of the Federal Poverty Level. 

Special Enrollment – People who experience a qualifying life event can enroll in a health plan through Covered California even outside of the open-enrollment period. Read more about special enrollment and qualifying life events here.

• Open Enrollment (new applicants) – October 15 – January 31 annually.

• Renewals – October 15 – November 15

• Medi-Cal enrollment is open all year!

Steps for Coverage


Visit the Covered California Website and enter some information about yourself to get a quick estimate of what you would pay for health insurance. The lower your income, the more they can help!


Like what you see? You’re ready to apply! You’ll need your income information, ID, proof of citizenship or lawful presence, Social Security number and ZIP code.


You can get free help on the phone or in your neighborhood. Find your local United Way or call 211. You can also call Covered California (800) 300-1506 or “Find Local Help” on the Covered California website.


See and review your private insurance options and how much they will cost. Select the health and dental plans you want. You may find out you qualify for Medi-Cal.


You may be able to make your first month’s payment online, or you can wait for the bill to come in the mail.


Congratulations! You and your family can enjoy the peace of mind of knowing you have health insurance. Be sure to start using your coverage to get the care that you need.

FREE CLINIC DIRECTORY: People without health insurance often find themselves with limited options for affordable healthcare and free dental care, and their lives and health often depend on access to free medical clinics. Free Clinic Directory helps uninsured people connect with affordable and free health clinics in their area. By clicking on a state, a person can find free and affordable clinic listings by county.

Housing Support

For Renters, landlords, and homeowners:

For rental assistance from the state of California, the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program provides financial assistance for unpaid rent to eligible renters and landlords who have been impacted by COVID-19. Depending on the address of your rental property, you may be eligible for a local program. Learn more here.

California also has a program for those seeking mortgage assistance. The California Mortgage Relief Program uses federal Homeowner Assistance Funds to help homeowners get caught up on their housing payments. The program is absolutely free and the funds do not need to be repaid. ​​The program is open to all eligible Californians who are currently experiencing pandemic-related hardships and have fallen behind on their housing payments.

Applicants must meet ALL of the following criteria:

• Household income at or below 100% of their county’s Area Median Income;

• Missed at least two mortgage payments prior to December 27, 2021;

• Own a single-family home, condo or permanently affixed manufactured home; and

• Faced a pandemic-related financial hardship after January 21, 2020.

In addition, applicants must meet ONE of the following criteria:

• Receiving public assistance;

• Severely housing burdened (costs for your mortgage, property taxes and other housing expenses are more than 40% of your income); or

• Have no alternative mortgage workout options (loan modifications) through your mortgage servicer.

You can find more information regarding eligibility at

For immediate shelter needs: Please call 2-1-1 to speak with someone about services in your area.

If you are enrolled in CalWORKS: The Housing Support Program assists families in the CalWORKs program that are experiencing homelessness or at imminent risk of homelessness. The Housing Support Program is administered through CalWORKs at the county level. Contact your local county welfare office to apply/learn more.

Financial Resources

California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE): Provides a 30-35% discount on your utility bill and potentially a 20% discount on your natural gas bill. Apply HERE.

Energy Savings Assistance Program (ESA): Provides no-cost weatherization services to low-income households who meet the CARE income guidelines. For more information find your utility provider click HERE.

Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program: Provides assistance to eligible low-income households with the goal of managing and meeting their immediate home heating and/or cooling needs. Click HERE to see what services are available under this program.

Immigration Resources

Immigration Services: Offer many types of free legal services, as well as information about other services that support immigrants such as outreach, community education, and other immigration remedies. Find immigration legal services for other immigration remedies throughout California such as T-Visa, U-Visa, Violence Against Women Act, and Asylum via the webpage: Contact CDSS Immigration Services Contractors.

California Immigrant Guide: Immigrants seeking help with English language learning, workforce skill development, naturalization preparation or legal assistance, can find information on available services throughout the state at California Immigrant Guide.

Unaccompanied Undocumented Minors Legal Services: Unaccompanied minors may be eligible to obtain an immigration status including Asylum, T-Visa, U-Visa, and/or Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) via the California Department of Social Services website: CDSS Unaccompanied Undocumented Minors Contractors.

Immigrant Response Funds: Visit GCIR’s website to view a list of state and nationwide immigrant response funds.

Caregiver Resources

Caregivers are individuals who provide support and care to their loved ones who are unable to care for themselves. These individuals may not even recognize themselves as caregivers, but their role is critical to ensuring their loved ones receive the care they need.

Types of support that caregivers might provide can include transportation to appointments, managing finances and expenses, and assisting with daily activities like meal preparation and medication management.

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