I’ve gotten several comments asking about TANF and what you do all day. So if you have children under the age of 6, you have to be there 20 hours a week and if you have kids over the age of 6, you have to be there 30 hours a week. You sit in cubicles in front of computers where you work on your resume, Alison courses, Work keys (which is hard as shit) and you sit there dealing with the mind numbing boredom. It’s always pretty hot in there too. They have a fan but someone is always cold so they shut it off. You can leave for appointments but a lot of the time you have to prove your appointments as well. If you have a phone call, everyone sitting in there is going to hear at least your side of the conversation. They have a nutrition class every Tuesday where some lady comes and you have to help make whatever recipe she decides.
They sometimes help with gas, car insurance, clothes, and you are supposed to get a monthly check and stipend. They told me I won’t get any of that help because there’s only so much in the budget for it. They never even sent me a letter saying what amount I was to get or when.
It’s definitely not the stepping stone they make it out to be and I will NEVER recommend this dumpster fire to anyone. For me, my main barrier is not having childcare after school where they COULD help but I was told that I would have to get a specific job but didn’t tell me what or where.
There’s a girl that was there for the past several months when I was there last. I think it’s insane for anyone to have the patience or attention span for it. The paycheck isn’t anything that’s going to help you but people like it because you don’t have to report it to food stamps or whatever help you get.
I recommend any single parent to just overcome your barriers and get a job. TANF is the sickest fucking joke on the planet and it’s just as useless as your deadbeat. They like to make sure that your accountable for getting your kids to school and then sitting there all day but there’s nothing they can do about the CS unpaid. It’s a program that’s going to just make you more angry and more bitter and it’s like they want you do be as dependent on it as humanly possible. I don’t believe they encourage people to get jobs.
They were telling me the other day that if I was to do Spark, I would have to sit there until there was orders and they would match it dollar for dollar where you don’t get much anyways and you would be over income super fast so you wouldn’t get a check from them anyways. They also don’t help with gas if you do Spark. They aren’t going to help me with gas anyway and I can’t afford to get my kid back and forth to school and have the gas to go there everyday.
Oh and they’ll probably sanction me from lack of participation which means if I were to ever apply for TANF again, I’ll get half my paycheck. I’ve called and left a message about closing my case but no one ever called back nor did I see any money.
I’m still hoping I’ll have childcare after school so I can figure out my job plans. I don’t plan to do any more job search until after my appointments next week though. I get turned down by pretty much every job I apply at so I’m taking a break because it really starts to get to me.
There’s no real help for single parents. You just have to figure it out and KNOW there’s no one or a place that’s going to give you the tools you need to get a job and keep it. I just hope everyone reading my entries is being very careful who they are laying down with or you could end up right where I’m at.
Right now my plan is to probably do some kind of side hustle on weekends that I can take my daughter with and just do what I can to get by until I either get disability or my daughter gets old enough to be home alone. I’m stuck and I’m just as stuck now as I was 3 years ago. I wouldn’t wish this upon my worst enemy. Sometimes I honestly feel like I could die and not care. The only thing that keeps me here is my child.
I’m so depressed that I struggle to breathe. I struggle to get out of bed in the morning. I don’t have any friends or support system. I’m very lonely. I don’t know what to do about trying to change my situation because every time I try, I just get knocked down even further. I try not to drive my car any more than needed because I’m scared of it breaking down. I’m scared there’s going to come a day where I won’t be able to afford my car insurance and internet.