If you have been unemployed for quite a while and are now learning that your unemployment benefits have or are about to run out, you are probably searching for a way to put food on the table, afford to keep your home or apartment or pay your utility bills. This section of our website is designed to help you face these new challenges and educate yourself about how New Jersey’s social service system works. Take some time to explore the programs that may be able to help you and your family through these difficult times.
Turn to NJHelps
NJHelps is a free and easy service in our state that will walk you through basic eligibility criteria online and enable you to anonymously answer simple questions about your family, your income, and your situation. Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ll be taken to a page on the website that offers a customized list of programs and services designed to help people in your situation. From this page, you will learn where to go for help and what to bring with you. You'll also be able to apply for some programs (like SNAP - Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) online.
NJHelps does not have the final say in whether you are eligible for the programs and services recommended. The suggested list is based entirely upon the answers that you have provided. Once you have reviewed the list and have decided to apply for benefits, you will still have to contact each program and provide documented household, income, and spending details.
Learn more about NJHelps.
Learn about free health insurance for your children through NJ FamilyCare.
County Boards of Social Services
The County Boards of Social Services offer a variety of services and programs. If you meet the eligibility requirements for NJ SNAP food assistance and cash assistance you can apply for help at your County Board of Social Services.
You are Not Alone
If at any time you feel overwhelmed or just don’t know where to turn next, please know that you are always welcome to dial 2-1-1. Our resource specialists are available to assist you at any hour of the day or night, on any day of the year. Our office never closes. There are also, crisis helplines that can help you or a family member as you face your loss of income and deal with the ramifications of your current situation.
For emotional support call the NJ Mental Health Helpline toll-free at 866.202.HELP (866.202.4357). A TTY line is also available at 877-294-4356.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a toll-free suicide prevention service available to anyone in suicidal crisis. Reach out and ask for help at 800-273-TALK (800-273-8255).
Domestic Violence Hotline - 1-800-572-SAFE (7233) - This resource is available 24-hours a day, seven days a week to serve domestic violence victims and others seeking information about domestic violence. The Hotline provides bilingual service and is accessible to the hearing impaired. Learn more about the domestic violence programs available in your county.
For Teens - 2NDFLOOR Teen line - 888-222-2228 - 2NDFLOOR is a youth helpline serving all youth and young adults in the state of New Jersey. Youth are assisted with their daily life challenges by professional staff and trained volunteers.