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Apply for the Maui Relief Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program for families with dependent children

In partnership with the state Department of Human Services, Maui Economic Opportunity, Inc. (MEO) is administering the Maui Relief TANF Program that will provide help with housing, auto and utility payments and other expenses for income-eligible families with children who were directly impacted by the Aug. 8 wildfires.

The Maui Relief TANF Program “Program” provides benefits to eligible families with dependent children with household incomes at or below 350% of the federal poverty level* who either experienced property damage or loss, or lost earnings or employment as a direct result of the wildfire disaster. The Program benefits are not intended to meet a family’s recurring needs and will not extend beyond four (4) months.

Rental and mortgage, utilities, and auto down payment on a new vehicle and loan payment assistance are available, as well as gift cards for clothing and school supplies.

Families with dependent children in their household, directly and indirectly impacted by the wildfires and earning less than 350 percent of the poverty level (which for a family of four is $120,750 annually) are eligible for the benefits.

U.S. citizenship is not a requirement.

Applications are accepted online and in-person:

• In person: The Maui Relief TANF Program, which launched on Oct. 20, continues to accept applications in-person at MEO offices in Wailuku. Applications are accepted in-person at MEO’s Wailuku office: 99 Mahalani St., from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays (except holidays). Applicants should bring required documents with them.

• Online: The application for the Maui Relief TANF Program can be accessed from the MEO website. To apply for the Maui Relief TANF Program, go to www.meoinc.org and go to the Maui Relief TANF program under “Quick Links” or click this link directy.

For more information, leave a message on the Maui Relief TANF Program phone line at (808) 243-4404 and staff will return the call.

Families must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Be a Hawai‘i resident.
  • Have at least one dependent child, up to age 24 years who is under the care of a relative.
  • Impacted by the Aug.  8 wildfires with property loss or damage or loss of earnings or job.
  • Family’s annual gross income is no more than 350 percent of the 2023 Hawai‘i federal poverty level, which is $79,380 for a family of two or $120,750 for a family of four.

The relief payments include:

  • One-time deposit and payments of up to four months for long-term (at least 12 months) housing. Monthly payments are based on the actual housing cost, up to $4,000.
  • One-time personal automobile down payment of up to $5,000.
  • Personal automobile loan payments for up to four months, based on actual cost, up to $500 per month.
  • One-time utility deposit of up to $2,000 and utility payments of up to four months, with a maximum of $750 per month, which both may be applied toward multiple utility sources.
  • Clothing allowance up to $350 per child under 18 years old and up to $500 for children ages 18 to 24 years and adults.
  • School supply allowance up to $300 for each school-age child.

A family may apply for benefits based on their current needs. The benefits received may not duplicate other emergency and disaster relief assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the American Red Cross or other disaster assistance organization.

For more information about the Maui Relief TANF Program, call 808-243-4404 or email nrst@meoinc.org.

MEO operates the program in partnership with the state Department of Human Services and Hawaii Community Foundation.

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