Unemployment does not last forever. Even while trying to manage your funds, when the money stops coming in, you must find a way to secure more income. There are a few things you can do to help get you through this tough time until you land a new job.
Check for Emergency Unemployment Compensation in Your State
You may be eligible for extended unemployment benefits, such as the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC), if available. This allows up to 26 additional weeks of unemployment insurance compensation. Your state may still require you to seek employment and file your regular claims.
Cut Out Expenses
If you haven’t already, now is the time to cut out expenses. Having reduced to no income, you may qualify for many government programs. One such program is the Lifeline Assistance Program. Programs vary by state, but you can apply for a free cell phone or use your existing phone. This allows free minutes for your cell phone usage and the minutes vary from 150 to 250 minutes per month.
Also, check with your local internet access provider for free or reduced internet service. Internet Essentials and Connect2Compete are two low-cost programs. If you have a child living in the home enrolled in the national free or reduced school lunch program, you should qualify. You can reduce your grocery expenses by enrolling in your state food stamp (SNAP) program.
Check with local churches and food pantries to get groceries on a weekly basis. Check with churches and other non-profit organizations in your area offering soup kitchens. This is an affordable way to receive a healthy meal for your family in a time of need.
Enroll in School
Check out programs at your community college to learn a new trade. This can help you get into a new industry within a year or two. Community colleges offer job placement assistance to help you prepare a stellar resume and get your foot in the door with industry leaders in your community. You may even receive a cash stipend after student aid has been disbursed for your classes and books.
Work Seasonal Positions around Your Neighborhood
The easiest thing to do around your neighborhood is working seasonal positions. Ask neighbors if you can help around their home for a small fee. You can rake leaves, mow the lawn, or shovel snow. There is always a maintenance position to do.
Another seasonal position in your neighborhood may be to prepare taxes. Some tax companies offer free tax preparation courses. If you pass the test, you may be eligible to start working on taxes during the busy season and rack in overtime.