San Benito County

Health & Human Services Agency

Hollister, California

CalWORKS - Cash Aid


The goal of CalWORKs is to provide cash assistance and services to eligible needy San Benito County families, ultimately leading to sustainable self-reliance.

How to Apply

You may apply online for CalWORKS using the link below:


Please visit San Benito County Health and Human Services Agency in person, at the following:

Health and Human Services Agency
1111 San Felipe Road, Suite 206
Hollister, CA  95023

Families requesting CalWORKs assistance must complete the application forms and attend a face-to-face interview.  The family may ask for immediate help if it has little or no cash and needs emergency housing, food, utilities, clothing, or medical care.  At the interview, the county will advise applicants of the rules that must be met to be eligible for CalWORKs.  If the county determines the applicant is eligible for CalWORKs, the family will receive monthly benefits until determined ineligible.

About the CalWORKS Program

Eligibility requirements take into account an applicant’s citizenship, age, income, resources, assets and other family factors.  Generally, services are available to:

  • Families having at least one child in the home deprived of parental support or care because of absence, disability, or death of either parent.
  • Families with at least one child and both parents in the home where the principal wage earner is unemployed.
  • Needy caretaker relative of a child or foster child.

Program Requirements

CalWORKs (California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids) has a cumulative 48-month time limit for cash aid benefits and requires recipients to meet strict work participation requirements.  Families receiving cash aid are required to obtain immunizations for preschool children and school age children are required to attend school regularly.  After 48 months of aid, a safety net will provide aid to the children only, if the family has not progressed to a status of self-reliance.  Self-reliance is the essential goal of the CalWORKs program.


  • Cash assistance
  • Homeless assistance
    • Eligibility Requirements– At times, families in San Benito County may be facing housing uncertainty.  For families who are CalWORKs eligible, there may be homeless assistance available.  Homeless assistance does not have income or resource limits.  There is a once in a lifetime limit for both programs with a few exceptions, including natural disasters and domestic violence.  There are two types of programs available including temporary and permanent housing.
    • Temporary Housing– Temporary Homeless Assistance provides shelter for a maximum of 16 continuous days for families without a place to stay.  The payment is provided to one of several pre-selected housing suppliers.  During the temporary period, families should be looking for permanent housing.
    • Permanent Housing – Once permanent housing is found, families can receive assistance with security deposit and other necessary deposits/fees payment that the household is eligible for.
  • Job readiness assistance

Additional Assistance Programs

Refugees – The Refugee Assistance Program provide leadership and coordination of programs and services for refugee families resettling in San Benito County.  Resources include employment programs, teaching English as a Second Language, and support services such as child care, counseling, and transportation.  This is accomplished through a close working relationship with a wide variety of nonprofit services.

Adoptions Assistance Program – At times, the San Benito County Human Services Agency must facilitate adoptions for children that become involved with Child Welfare Services.  If the child cannot be returned home, a permanent solution must be sought. While adopting a child is a very noble act, it can be quite expensive. The Adoptions Assistance Program helps to alleviate this added expense.  The Adoptions Assistance Program provides cash assistance to adoptive families.  This assistance can help smooth the transition of a new family member and pay for necessities for years to come.

Kin-GAP – Assistance Payment Program – When children must be placed into foster care, the best placement is with family.  If the court ends the dependency of the children in the foster care system, foster care payments will stop.  The family can turn to either CalWORKs or Kin-GAP for further funding.

The Basic Eligibility Requirements for Kin-GAP are:

  • Child must have resided with the relative caregiver for at least six (6) consecutive months in a court-ordered placement, i.e., dependent/delinquent child placed in the home.
  • Legal Guardianship must be established with the relative caregiver.
  • Dependency must be dismissed at the same time or after the establishment of the Legal Guardianship by the Juvenile Court.

Cal-Learn – The Cal-Learn Program serves CalWORKs clients under the age of 19 years of age who are custodial parents or pregnant and who do not have a high school diploma or its equivalent.  The Cal-Learn program provides financial bonuses for success in school as well as supportive services including transportation, childcare, some school related expenses, and referrals to other agencies.

About the Program – Teen parents who participate in the Cal-Learn program can expect to participate in an assessment with a Cal-Learn case manager to determine what services and support are needed to ensure educational goals are met.  From the assessment, the teen parent and case manager work together to develop a plan to enroll in and remain in school.  The plan includes the steps and supports necessary to be successful in reaching the educational goals and outlines the case managers responsibilities to assist in achieving these goals.  Participants will work closely with their case managers to ensure their continued success.

Language Translation Disclaimer
Best viewed withGoogle Chrome and Firefox. Our Agency’s website links to Google Translation as a convenience for those who speak/read languages other than English.  Please be aware that no automated or computerized translation tool produces a perfect translation.  The context of the wording may be lost when translated and some translations may lose the intended meaning. Therefore, the San Benito County Health and Human Services Agency cannot guarantee the accuracy of the translated content. 
If any  questions arise concerning the translated version of the website, please refer to the original English version.
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