Slide 2

The Kawerak Welfare Assistance Department consists of three (3) programs: General (Monthly) Assistance, Burial Assistance and Emergency Assistance (natural disasters).

These three (3) programs provide temporary assistance to individuals and families in meeting their basic essential needs.

Applicants must meet all three (3) program eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • Must be a member of a federally recognized tribe, Alaska Native or American-Indian
  • Must reside in the Bering Straits Region (excluding NEC & Gambell members)
  • Income eligible per the BIA Standards and not have enough resources to meet the essential needs.

Tribal members who reside outside of the Bering Strait region should contact the local tribal office where they reside for General, Burial and Emergency assistance.

  • Anchorage residents contact: Cook Inlet Tribal Council office at 907.793.3300 or 907.265.5911
  • Fairbanks residents contact:  Fairbanks Native Association office at 907.452.1648
  • Wasilla residents contact:  Nima Corporation Mekoryuk IRA office at 907.827.8827
  • Other community information Juneau contact:  BIA Social Services 1.800.645.8397
  • Nome Eskimo Tribal members contact:  NEC office 907.443.9120
  • Gambell Tribal members contact:  Gambell IRA 907.985.5346
Monthly Welfare Assistance (Income Based)
Eligibility Requirements:
  • Be a member of an existing tribe or eligible for tribal membership.
  • Reside within the Bering Straits Region or be temporarily absent (not to exceed 60 days) from the region.
  • Have exhausted all other prior resources before they will be eligible.
  • Other prior resources include, but are not limited to: ATAP; State General Relief; Food stamps; Social Security benefits, Veterans benefits and Unemployment Benefits.
  • Not be receiving ATAP or Social Security Disability Benefits.
  • Be actively seeking employment and accept employment unless they are exempted from work requirements.
  • Not have a State of Alaska or Social Security assistance case suspended for non-compliance. If possible we will assist a tribal member in becoming compliant with an agency. Please call and ask someone in our office if we are able to assist you in resolving your issues.

To Apply, download the General (Monthly) Assistance Application

Burial Assistance (Income Based)

Planning a funeral can be a very stressful and emotional time. The Kawerak Welfare Assistance has attempted to gather as much information that is available online, that is needed to plan a funeral and have provided the packet for more information. We hope this will help eliminate some of the stress during such an emotional time. Kawerak Burial Assistance (BU) Program is an income based, last resort assistance program for residents of the Bering Straits region. BU offers basic BIA funeral and burial assistance. These services include (up to a maximum of $2,500 limit): preparation & embalming; provision for a cloth-covered casket with at least 4 handles & a padded & lined interior; one chapel service at vendor’s place of business; use of a hearse, use of other facilities & equipment for burial or cremation; if the casket and cross are going to be made, supplies may be purchased in your local community with staff approval. The family will be notified the determination, and if approved, a vendor payment to the mortuary/funeral home will be made appropriately. The family is responsible for taking care of all arrangements with the mortuary/funeral home and with the State Medical Examiner’s office where appropriate. If the deceased was receiving Adult Public Assistance (APA), Alaska Temporary Assistance (ATAP) or SSI, they must first apply first for General Relief Burial Assistance (GRA) through the State of Alaska, Public Assistance office at 1.800.478.2236 or 443.2237. Anchorage residents call (907) 793-3300 CITC to apply.

To Apply, download the Funeral/ Burial Information packet & Burial Assistance Application

Emergency Assistance

Maximum Amount $1000.00
This assistance can be made to individuals or families who suffer from a burnout, flood or other destruction of their home and loss or damage to personal possessions. Payments will be made for essential needs and other non-medical necessities. Prior to applying for Kawerak, Inc.’s Emergency Assistance, you must contact the Red Cross of Alaska at 1.800.451.8267 and request assistance. Kawerak Emergency Assistance is an income based, last resort assistance program for residents of the Bering Straits region If approved for Emergency Assistance, payment will not exceed $1,000 per household for certain items lost, as established by the BIA CFR §20.329-23.30. Prior to providing emergency assistance, other resources should be exhausted before emergency assistance is provided.

To Apply, download the Emergency Assistance Application

Disaster Assistance

This is immediate and/or short-term relief from a disaster and can be provided to a tribal community. This request will be submitted to the Regional Director through the General Assistance Director. This requires a tribal resolution, a copy of state of presidential declaration of disaster; and projected extent of need in the service area not covered by other federal funding sources. The G.A. Director will submit the request to the Regional Director who will make a recommendation and forward it to the Assistant Secretary for the final decision.