HONOLULU (KHON2) — TANF: Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Program: It’s been modified to deal with the needs of survivors of the Maui’s wildfires.

Governor Josh Green M.D. announced that the Hawaiʻi Department of Human Services along with its partner Maui Economic Opportunity Inc. will begin taking applications on Friday, Oct. 20.

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The program is intended to provide up to four months of financial support for families who have been directly impacted by the wildfires that have devastated many parts of Maui.

“The families impacted by the Maui wildfires continue to need our help. The necessities families struggle to pay for on a day-to-day basis can become insurmountable after a disaster,” said Gov. Green. The $100 million we secured for the Maui Relief TANF Program will relieve the burden of some of these critical financial needs.”

The program provides survivors who have at least one dependent child in their household with financial support for housing, transportation, utilities and other specific needs.

“Governor Green’s top priority is to provide critically needed resources for survivors impacted by the devastating wildfires, shared Cathy Betts, director of the State Department of Human Services.

Eligibility for Maui Relief TANF Program requires that a family must have at least one dependent child along with having experienced property loss or damage or a reduction in earnings or employment directly due to the impacts of the wildfires and must meet income requirements stipulated by TANF.

“To that end, DHS is proud to announce this partnership to provide up to $100 million in TANF funds to ensure families have access to financial resources to set them on a path to healing and resiliency,” added Betts.

DHS said that survivors are strongly encouraged to apply for FEMA’s Individual Assistance program before they apply for support through the TANF 

Things that the TANF program can directly address are funding for:

  • housing.
  • vehicle payments.
  • utilities.
  • clothing.
  • school supplies for school-aged children.

For more information or to apply starting October 20, please call the Maui Relief TANF Program at (808) 243-4316, email at NRST@meoinc.org, or visit their website.

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Keep in mind that this support may be provided in addition to FEMA Individual Assistance if a family has exhausted its FEMA assistance and critical needs still exists.