This resource page is intended to provide information and resources in areas that the widow in your care might be struggling with. I have listed the resources according to topic or need. If you know of other resources or websites that would also benefit the widow that are not included here please contact me from the home page and let me know what you have. Also, I would love to hear from you if you have implemented a ministry to widows in your church. What is your ministry like or how is it unique? I would love to include some of those ideas in our monthly newsletters and article archives for other pastors to access.
In addition to these websites the Bible study materials available through the Study Guide Tab above can be a valuable tool for widows both individually and in group settings. They are unique in that they address many personal areas of struggle a widow may experience from a more Biblical perspective. Please feel free to print them off. If you have widows in your care I hope you will begin to print off our monthly newsletters on a regular basis and make them available to your church. It seems that everyone knows someone who is a widow. If you have a church website please include www.widowtowidow.net as a direct link for the widows in your church to access.
— This site is a great resource for understanding social security benefits and getting information on qualifications etc. Sometimes when a widow first applies for social security survivor benefits she may be initially denied. Encourage her to reapply if you know she should qualify for help.
— This site offers a lot of help with budgeting and finding answers to financial questions. There is free counseling available and numbers you can call for questions. Crown Financial Ministries was started by Larry Burkett and Howard Dayton and continues to be managed by Howard Dayton.
— The federal C.O.B.R.A. Act requires by law that an employer extend health insurance benefits at the same rate the company pays to a surviving spouse and her dependents for 18 months after her husband dies. After this time the company has the option to continue the extension but the rate will be based on individual policy premiums. Some companies provide for this continued extension after the required eighteen months as part of their employee package. Details about this law and its provisions can be found at the above site.
The following resources are insurance options that can be accessed through Christian organizations:
— Samaritan Ministries is an organization that offers a group health insurance plan with other believers. They offer car insurance as well health insurance and options for Christian credit union accounts.
— Medi-Share is an organization that also offers "affordable, Biblical healthcare." They are associated with the American Evangelistic Association.
— This site has good information on setting up an HSA account that works in tandem with an insurance company that offers a high deductible policy making the insurance premiums much more affordable to someone who is not going through a group plan.
— This is a great site for those widows who have lost a husband serving in the military. Many will already have resources that the military has provided but this site has a lot of good information including an ongoing newsletter that will help you to be better informed.
— TAPS is an acronym standing for Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors. This site helps to link survivors in similar circumstances. Seminars and chat opportunities are included.
— For veterans who served at least one day during any given war the government offers free money for use in assisted living facilities. There are several requirements to qualify and dates of enlistment must be one of the following:
Eligible dates are 12/07/1941-12/31/1946, 6/27/1950-1/31/1955, 8/5/1964-5/7/1975, 8/20/1990-present.
Details on the specifics and how to apply etc. can be found at www.veterans-express.com. Married veterans are eligible for $1700/month, single veterans $1470 and widows of veterans $945. This is paid directly to the applicant/responsible party as additional income, not to the community where they reside.