Reach Up in Vermont (TANF)

The official State website for Reach Up (TANF) in Vermont.

Reach Up helps families with children by providing cash assistance for basic needs and services that support work and self-sufficiency.


Who is eligible?

Eligibility depends on your income, resources, living expenses, family members in your household, how many months of Reach Up you've already received, and other factors.

If you only need short-term help, are likely to be self-sufficent in 4 months or less, AND meet eligibility requirements, you may choose to participate in, or we may refer you to, our Reach First program.


How does Reach Up work?

  1. The first step is to apply.
  2. If you are eligible, we'll assess your readiness for work. We'll look at your skills and abilities, job interests, and training or education. We'll also look at any challenges that make it difficult for you to work (e.g., child care, transportation, health needs, or personal issues).
  3. You and your case manager will create a family development plan that maps out your work goals and steps you'll take to achieve them. Your goals might include looking for a job, getting your GED or high school diploma, attending job training, pursuing higher education, and getting on-the-job experience. You'll update the plan together as you make progress.
  4. Reach Up may provide case management, cash assistance, and support services.

How do I apply?

  1. Click here to go to our online application;
  2. Call our Benefits Service Center at 1-800-479-6151 to request a paper application; or
  3. Apply in person at your local district office.

What else do I need to Know?

Work Requirement:

To keep maximum Reach Up benefits, you'll need to spend a certain number of hours each week either working or participating in approved activities that will lead to a job. The number of hours you will be required to work, or participate in approved work activities, will depend on your children's ages and your family situation.

You may not have to work or engage in work activities right away if:

  • You have a health problem;
  • You are caring for a very young child; or
  • Childcare is not available.

While Reach Up provides you with benefits and services, you are expected to follow your family development plan. If you do not follow your plan, your financial assistance grant may be reduced.


Cash Assistance:

Your Reach Up cash assistance will be deposited directly into your bank account through direct deposit. If you don't have a bank account, you'll receive your cash assistance on an EBT (electronic benefit transfer) card called Vermont Express.

Click here to learn more about how the card works and where it can be used.


After you go to work:

Getting a job is just one part of the picture. If you still need help after you get a job or after Reach Up cash assistance ends, you may still be able to get:

We can also help you to keep your job or get a better one.


Changes that started May 2014:

Please read the documents below for more information:


Have questions? Need help applying?

Call our Benefits Call Center at 1-800-479-6151 or visit a District Office.