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Frequently Asked Questions

Who will the program serve? How many people will the program serve?

  1. Rx Kids is the first citywide cash payment program for mothers and infants, aiming to reach all expectant mothers and infants in the city of Flint. The program will serve the families of an estimated 1,200 infants born in Flint each year.
  2. Infants born in 2024 and expectant mothers that live in the city of Flint are eligible.
  3. Participants must reside in the city of Flint.
  4. There are no income requirements for the program.

How can you find out if you are a city of Flint resident?

Many people are unsure if they live in the actual city of Flint. Your mailing address may have ‘Flint’ listed as the city, but the city name assigned to your mailing address is based on an old postal system to help sort mail. This is a problem all around the country, and about 1/3 of people with “Flint” in their mailing address do not actually live in the city of Flint. Flint Township is also not related to the city of Flint in any way; it is not a part of the city. Many townships and districts don’t have place names on their postal addresses. Beecher and Hamady are two additional examples: they are in Mt. Morris and Genesee Township, which are not a part of the city of Flint.

Below are some ways to determine if you actually live in the city of Flint:

  1. Your address falls inside one of Flint’s nine wards as defined at the Imagine Flint website
  2. Your address can be found when searching on the Flint Property Portal
  3. Your address falls inside the border when you go to Google Maps and type ‘Flint, MI’
  4. Your voter registration is linked to city of Flint
  5. You pay city of Flint property taxes on the home where you live
  6. You pay ‘resident’ (1%) income taxes to the city of Flint

When does the program begin?

Enrollment opened on on January 10, 2024. Click here to apply.

How can families sign up for Rx Kids?

  1. Sign up may be done on mobile devices with the ability to upload residency and pregnancy information. If you are a city of Flint resident and are pregnant and expecting in 2024, click here to apply.
  2. Expectant mothers may sign up for the program during pregnancy. Verification of pregnancy (“prescription”) will be required by a health care provider.
  3. If not enrolled during pregnancy, sign up will also be possible after birth until six months of age for infants born in 2024.

How will this program help families and the community at large?

  1. Raising kids is expensive and society should come alongside to support families. Rx Kids is setting a model of care for how we care for kids.
  2. For most people, a child’s birth is a joyous event. For too many families, though, income plunges, and poverty spikes right before a child is born and remains high throughout the first year. These first months of life are critical for a baby’s development; it’s also when their families are struggling the most. Cash payments will help families make ends meet, enabling them to meet basic needs. By increasing economic stability, housing stability, food security and nutrition, and healthcare uptake, these payments can improve infant and maternal health and wellbeing, and even longer-term outcomes.
  3. Delivering cash to every mother and infant has the potential to not only improve individual outcomes but also to increase economic activity and create a multiplier effect that benefits the community as a whole.

What are the goals of the program?

  1. Deliver the cash: Rx Kids aims to provide cash payments to every expectant mother and infant in the city of Flint, Michigan, a city with one of the highest rates of child poverty in the country. In doing so, we aim to improve infant and maternal health, the economic and mental wellbeing of participants, and community-wide outcomes.
  2. Show what’s possible for others: The city of Flint is just the beginning. If we can demonstrate the power of citywide cash to address Flint’s profound economic and health inequities, we can spark a national movement to shift more resources directly to families and build a brighter future for children born into poverty.
  3. Change the narrative around poverty/deservedness: We’re shifting the poverty narrative around money by empowering families to make economic decisions that best fit their immediate needs. This is about dignity, love, trust, and restoring the social contract.

What does the research on cash say?

  1. Hundreds of studies show that unconditional cash transfers can be life-changing across countries and contexts. Mothers and babies are no different, and early intervention is shown to have sustained health and development impacts years after cash is delivered.
  2. Healthier pregnancies: Multiple studies have found positive impacts of cash on birth weight, premature births, and breastfeeding, parental mental health, and food security.
  3. Improved early development: New research shows that $333 monthly cash transfers to low-income families boosted infants’ early cognitive development.
  4. Impact lasts into adulthood: Years after their moms received cash transfers, adult children experienced benefits across health, education, and nutritionlifetime earnings, and reduced anxiety and depression.
  5. The 2021 Expanded Child Tax Credit lifted millions of families out of poverty and drove child poverty to a record low of 5.2 percent. Evidence shows numerous additional benefits, including reduced food insecurity and financial hardship, improved health for children and parents, better school performance, and reduced incidence of child abuse. Benefits extend into adulthood and far exceed the cost of the expanded tax credit.

What documents are needed to apply?

To apply for Rx Kids, you will need documents that show your identity, your residency in the city of Flint, and your pregnancy/guardianship status. For a list of accepted documents, click here.

How will families receive the funds?

Participants will be instructed on how to set up their preferred payment method when they enroll in the program; they will be able to select from direct deposit to their bank accounts or a prepaid debit card.

When will families start receiving funds, and for how long?

  1. The one-time, lump-sum, prenatal allowance of $1,500 will be transferred after 20 weeks.
  2. The infant allowances are $500 per month for the first 12 months of life.

After participants have been fully approved and verified, a notification will be sent via text or SMS when the transfer of funds is sent out. Please allow a few business days for funds to come through after receiving this message. Questions? Contact customer service at 1 (844) 382-8447.

Can dads or non-birthing parents receive payments?

Only birthing parents can receive the prenatal payment, as it’s intended to support development in utero. Infant payments are intended to follow the child, so if a birthing parent is not the baby’s primary caregiver, the primary caregiver, including fathers, adoptive and foster parents, and other non-birthing parents, can sign up for the program.

How long will the program run?

We’re aiming to deliver cash to city of Flint families for as long as possible; current funding commitments will enable us to run the program for at least three years.

How will we study the program’s impact?

Researchers at Michigan State University-Hurley Children’s Hospital Pediatric Public Health Initiative and Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan will conduct a mixed methods evaluation that includes quantitative analysis and interviews with participating mothers. We aim to isolate the impacts of the transfers from other factors by including a comparison group of babies born outside of Flint.