If you are a single mother living in Nashville and need help paying bills and meeting basic expenses, there are lots of options for getting the help you need.
Cash Assistance for single mothers
Tennessee’s version of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) is called Families First, and can provide cash assistance to qualifying families and single mothers. The county offices can help you apply for such benefits. Metropolitan Social Services (MSS) can help people navigate the system to get the help they need. The Metro Action Commission also has various avenues for helping single mothers.
Food assistance for single moms
Needy families can also enroll into the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which is what used to be called food stamps. The HomelessShelterDirectory lists about a dozen different soup kitchens in the Nashville area, while FoodPantries.org lists about seven. In addition, nearly all the groups listed in the “Help from Other Groups” section further down this page will provide some kind of help in getting you food when you need it.
Help with Shelter & Housing
Metropolitan Social Services (MSS) runs the Homeless Services Program to address the needs of homeless individuals and families by providing supportive direct services. If you need emergency shelter, the HomelessShelterDirectory lists 15 different options for Nashville. Rooftop Nashville provides rental assistance to help prevent homelessness. In addition, nearly all the groups listed in the “Help from Other Groups” section further down this page will provide some kind of help in paying for housing if you need it.
Energy and Utilities assistance for single mothers
The Metro Action Commission in Nashville has Utility Assistance Programs that can help single mothers. In addition, just about every group listed in the “Help from Other Groups” area further down this page provide some amount of help for utility bills.
Help with Telephone Bills
The Tennessee Regulatory Authority participates in the Lifeline Program that can get you a discount on your phone bills, and maybe even a free cell phone.
Childcare grants for single mothers
Qualifying families can get help with paying for childcare through the TN Smart Steps Child Care Assistance program. The Metropolitan Action Commission Head Start Program of Nashville and Davidson County is the main provider of Head Start services for children.
Help with Medical and Dental Care
Options for finding free or low-cost medical and dental care in the Nashville area include the following:
NeedMyMeds TN listing: scroll down for Nashville clinics – all 20 of them!
Help with Legal Matters
The Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennesee and the Cumberlands is a private, non-profit organization that provides free legal services (non-criminal matters only) to people with low income with an office in Nashville.
Help with Financial Counseling
The Partnership for Families, Children and Adults is a non-profit that has a division called the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of the Tennessee River Valley that can help with all kinds of financial services. An even better option is offered through the University of Tennessee Extension, which has all kinds of programs to help with Family Economics.
Help for singe moms from Other Groups
There are lots of groups in Nashville that provide single parents all kinds of services related to many of the areas mention above, including the following:
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