Grants For Released Felons in Florida

While specific grants for felons in Florida aren’t readily available, felons can apply for any grant offered to the general public unless the grant terms expressly disqualify felons.

Grants don’t have to be paid back and are available for starting a business, education, energy costs, medical expenses, rent payments, and more.

Government Grants For Felons In Florida 2024

Government Grants For Felons In Florida

Government grants that provide help for felons in Florida are generally awarded to organizations rather than private individuals. These organizations use grant funding to run programs for felons providing employment, housing, training, and other vital resources.

Some of these organizations may issue grants to felons to help with immediate needs.

Connect with your local reentry organizations (see below), the Continuum of Care agency (CoC) for your county, or your local job center to find out how you can benefit from the programs funded by government grants.

Find your local CoC here: https://www.myflfamilies.com/services/public-assistance/homelessness

Search for job center locations here: https://www.careeronestop.org/LocalHelp/AmericanJobCenters/find-american-job-centers.aspx

Florida Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

Felons can apply for cash and crisis grants to help cover energy bills and related emergencies.

Annual grants of up to $1,350 are available for both heating and cooling.

Crisis grants of up to $5,000 help replace broken or faulty HVAC equipment or cover you if you’re at risk of losing your utility service.

Florida residents with low incomes are eligible for the LIHEAP program, and you’ll automatically qualify if you’re already receiving SNAP, TANF, or SSI benefits.

Check the current income limits here: https://www.benefits.gov/benefit/1553

Apply through your local agency here: www.FloridaJobs.org/LIHEAPHelp

Free Cell Phone

Free Cell Phone

Florida felons on a low income can apply for a free cell phone through the Lifeline Service operated by Assurance Wireless.

  • Free Android phone
  • Free data
  • Free calls and texts
  • No phone bill
  • No credit checks

Apply at: https://www.assurancewireless.com/

Emergency Expenses Help For Felons In Florida

Modest Needs issues grants to help low-income applicants get through unexpected emergencies or pay bills they can’t afford.

Average grant amounts paid by Modest Needs are between $750 and $1,250.

Get cash help for felons in Florida at: https://www.modestneeds.org/.

Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA)

Felons on a low income can apply for this benefit if they have at least one child (under 18) living with them. You’re also eligible if you’re in the 9th month of your pregnancy or are unable to work during your third trimester.

Income and asset limits, citizenship requirements, and work rules apply. Assistance is limited to a lifetime total of 48 months.

The Florida Department of Children and Families has more information about the program here: https://www.myflfamilies.com/services/public-assistance/temporary-cash-assistance

Community College Grants

Community College Grants

The Financial Aid Department at your local community college will help you apply for education grants and scholarships so you can study or train for a new career.

Funding is targeted at students facing financial hardship, including unemployed felons and felons earning a low income. Visit your local community college or give them a call to learn more.

Florida community colleges list: https://www.stateofflorida.com/community-colleges/.

Search Fastweb’s scholarships database: https://www.fastweb.com/home.amp.

Pell Grants For Felons

Pell Grants are another funding source felons can use to help pay for college. The maximum yearly award is $7,395 for 2024-2025.

Individuals convicted of certain drug or sexual felonies may not be eligible for a Pell Grant but other felonies shouldn’t impact your eligibility.

You’ll need a high school diploma or GED to qualify and income limits apply.

Learn more about Pell Grants: https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/grants/pell

Small Business Grants

Felons looking for financial help to start a business can apply for grant funding to help with start-up costs and training. Competition for these grants is fierce, though, and to be considered you’ll need a business plan and a strong application.

Grants.gov

Set up a workspace account to search for federal grant programs on the grants.gov database. It’s advisable to use the training resources on the website to learn how to use the database and submit grant applications.

Register your account at: https://www.grants.gov/applicants/.

Grant Watch

Grant Watch is another database featuring thousands of grant opportunities.

Create a free account to get started at: https://www.grantwatch.com/

State and Local Small Business Grants

Small business grants may be available through various state, county, and city programs. Your local Small Business Development Center (SBDC) will have more information and advice for you.

Search for SBDC locations in Florida: https://www.sba.gov/local-assistance/resource-partners/small-business-development-centers-sbdc

Inmates To Entrepreneurs Free Course

This free, 8-week online course helps felons get ready to start a business. You’ll learn about:

  • Marketing
  • Business finances
  • Setting up a business
  • Sales
  • And more…

Register here: https://inmatestoentrepreneurs.org/programs/eight-week-course/

Benefits For Released Inmates In Florida

Benefits For Released Inmates In Florida

Benefits for released inmates in Florida help you obtain accommodation, food, and medical care.

Working with a reentry advisor is the best way to ensure you get all the benefits you’re eligible for.

When you use a reentry service, your caseworker will help you address your immediate needs and plan for the future.

You may be eligible for programs and benefits including:

  • Public housing programs that contribute to your rent
  • Transitional housing
  • SNAP (food stamps)
  • TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families)
  • Welfare benefits
  • Free or low-cost medical care
  • Free job skills training
  • Free academic and vocational education
  • Assisted placement with partner employers
  • Substance abuse programs
  • Mentorship & counseling
  • Lifeskills workshops
  • Legal help

Get more details on the reentry programs offering financial assistance for released prisoners in Florida through your parole or probation officer. Or call the free United Way helpline on 2-1-1.

The Lionheart Foundation provides a list of Florida reentry organizations. Get the list here: https://lionheart.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/FLORIDA_Reentry_List.pdf.

Before you apply for benefits, organize your identity and financial documents. Felons applying for small business grants should learn how to prepare a business plan and submit an effective grant proposal for the best chance of success.