Public Assistance Programs

Public Assistance Programs
  • Medical Assistance was established under Title XIX of the Federal Social Security Act to enable states to provide medical and health-related services for certain individuals and families with low incomes.
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) The overall goal of SNAP is to alleviate hunger and malnutrition by increasing resources for the purchase of food for a nutritious diet. 
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families(TANF) provides temporary cash assistance and employment-related services to enable families with child to become self-supporting.
  • Energy Assistance programs (EAP)assists low-income households in meeting their immediate home energy needs.
    • Fuel Assistance applications are accepted on the second Tuesday in October through the second Friday in November.
    • Crisis Assistance assists low-income households with energy related emergencies. Applications are accepted November 1st through March 15th.
    • Cooling Assistance assists household in acquiring or repairing cooling equipment and/or payment of electric bills to operate cooling equipment. Applications are accepted June 15 through August 15th.
  • Workforce Development Programs consist of:
    • Virginia Initiative for Education and Work (VIEW)
    • SNAP Employment and Training (SNAP E&T)
CommonHelp is the Commonwealth of Virginia's fast and easy way to apply online for many Virginia social services assistance programs such as Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, Energy Assistance and Child Care. Through a single online site, you can find out for what assistance you might be eligible and submit one application saving you time and effort. 
How to apply for Assistance
  • Complete an application
    • Apply online for benefits 
    • Apply for assistance by phone 855-635-4370
    • Apply for Medical Assistance only by phone 855-242-8282
    • Get a  paper application during office hours at local Dept. of Social Services
    • Call and request application be mailed to you
    • Print off paper application from state website / Coverva for Medical Assistance application
  • File application 
    • Leave the printed application at the Local Department of Social Services; or mail, fax the application to the local Department of Social Services.
    • Depending on the type of assistance you are requesting, you may need to be interviewed.
Additional information can be found at www.dss.virginia.gov or by calling Social Services at 703-361-8277
Other things you can do with Commonhelp

  • Check your benefits
  • Renew your benefits 
  • Link your account to a case 
  • Report changes to your case 
  • Update your account

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