Grants for Seniors in South Dakota

Key Senior Statistics in South Dakota (60 and over)
Senior Population: 229,647 (25.2%) Senior Population: 229,647 (25.2%)
Male: 47.4% Male: 47.4%
Female: 52.6% Female: 52.6%
Median Age: 70 Median Age: 70
Disability: 28% Disability: 28%
With Social Security Income: 73% With Social Security Income: 73%
With Food Stamp/SNAP Benefits: 6% With Food Stamp/SNAP Benefits: 6%
Below 100% of the Poverty Level: 11% Below 100% of the Poverty Level: 11%
Data Source: Data Source:
Data is taken from American Community Survey 2022.

Help for Seniors in South Dakota – 29 Assistance Programs

South Dakota shines with its nature, friendly residents, and low cost of living conditions. This state was chosen fourth best state to retire by CNBC and the second best state in terms of happiness and well-being. It is indeed an affordable state when it comes to transportation, utilities, housing, and health expenses. South Dakota was also chosen as the best state to retire by in 2018. Although it is one of the most senior-friendly states, some seniors may need help. There is a whole range of programs and services for seniors that are offered by the federal government, local society organizations, and the State of South Dakota.

State Assistance

The Division of Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS): The Division of LTSS works to offer seniors opportunities to enable the live independent lives while maintaining relationships with families and close friends. The division is committed to achieving its mission by providing long-term services and supports to delay the need for Older South Dakotans to join long-term care facilities. Under the Older Americans Act, LTSS offers services to seniors aged 60+ and meets program eligibility requirements. The division works with Long-Term Services and Supports Specialists who are located in every LTSS field office throughout South Dakota. The specialists offer information, referral services, and support to access in-home and community-based services. Read more about LTSS at

South Dakota Home and Community-Based options and Person-Centered Excellence (HOPE) Waiver: LTSS operates the HOPE Waiver program whose purpose is to offer home and community-based services to older adults aged 65+. The goal is to enable senior South Dakotans to thrive from the comfort of their homes, away from restrictive environments, which dictate how they have to live their lives. More information is available at

South Dakota ASA In-Home: South Dakota Department of Social Service, Division of Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) administers the ASA In-Home program whose purpose is to help seniors and disabled older adults to remain and live independently in their homes. The program assists with ADLs, including bathing, grooming, home management, shopping from grocery stores, preparation of meals, and eating. This program is designed for seniors not eligible for the Community-Based Services Waiver program. To be eligible for the program support, older adults aged 60 + or below for the disabled. Only residents of South Dakota are considered for the program assistance. One must also meet the low-income limits to be eligible for assistance. Read more about the program at

Financial Assistance

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF): TANF is a financial assistance program designed to provide economic support to low-income seniors and their families. South Dakota Department of Social Services and the Department of Labor and Regulations administer this program at the state level. The goal of the program is to enable low-income seniors to achieve economic self-sufficiency. The payment depends on household income, members, and other resources. The program participants can have their benefits sent to their savings accounts or use Way2Go cards. For more details, please visit

Catholic Charities South Dakota is a non-profit establishment that offers numerous programs and services for residents in need. There are grants available for seniors who require financial support. The size and total income of the household are the main criteria for this benefit. Amount of cash assistance changes based on the applicant’s case. Receivers can get monetary aid for housing needs, rent, or utilities. Find out more information at or give a call at 605 988 3788. Many other churches offer services and programs aimed at aiding the elderly population. It is recommended to reach out to nearby churches to learn about the services and programs they offer.

Housing and Rent Assistance

South Dakota Housing Choice Voucher Program-Section 8 is a well-known rent assistance program that was formed by the federal government with the aim of helping low and moderate-income residents. Seniors who are looking for rental assistance because of their economic hardship are prioritized by this program. Eligible seniors will be choosing their home, apartment, or flat based on their wishes. Roughly 70 percent of the rent will be covered by this benefit but it may differ depending on the total household income. For more information, please visit or call 605 886 2867.

South Dakota Housing Development Authority (SDHDA): SDHDA is dedicated to offering quality and affordable rental housing and improving the availability of affordable rental housing units by supporting the development and improvement of properties. The authority works closely with federal and local government agencies to administer support programs that make affordable housing available to low-income older adults.

Project Based Section 8: This is where seniors are allowed to choose a rental housing unit in the private sector. The housing unit chosen must meet HUD’s quality and safety standards and must be within the approved areas. Through this program, seniors will only contribute a small portion of their income towards their monthly rent, while the government subsidizes the remaining arrears.

Tenant Based Section 8 – Housing Choice Voucher (HCV): The housing Choice Program is locally administered by the Public Housing Authorities (PHAs). The government subsidizes the rental payment of low-income older adults. Seniors must meet the low-income limits in South Dakota to qualify for the program assistance. Find your local Public Housing Authority.

Visit for more information.

Salvation Army of South Dakota is one of the most influential non-governmental establishments in the state. It presents many services and benefits for all residents who need help. It assists people with meal assistance, financial support, empowering youth, and legal support. Besides, it has a Homeless Prevention Program that provides housing support for those who are at risk of losing their homes or who are about to be evicted. Seniors who need housing assistance are qualified for this program. To learn more, please go to contact 605 332 2331. In addition to the Salvation Army, there are additional charitable organizations that provide assistance to senior citizens.

South Dakota Cares Housing Assistance Program was created both by the State of South Dakota and South Dakota Housing Development Authority to provide affordable, decent, and nice housing options for people in economically disadvantaged positions. Older citizens who need a house for the long or short term are qualified for this program. To see eligibility criteria, please follow the link or make a phone call at 605 773 3181.

Home Repair Grants

There are Home Repair Grants available to seniors that help to ensure their homes are safe and properly maintained.

The USDA’s Single Family Housing Repair Loans & Grants: This program provides up to $10,000 grants to qualified senior homeowners. The grants should be used to get rid of health and safety hazards in their homes. These grants must be refunded if the senior homeowner sells or transfer the ownership of the property to someone else. To be eligible for home repair support, seniors must provide proof of homeownership and occupy the house, meet low-income requirements, be at least 62, and demonstrate the inability to access credit elsewhere. Read more at

The Community Home Improvement Program (CHIP): CHIP offers low-interest loans to eligible low-income older adults to enable them to improve their housing conditions by making the necessary repairs. CHIP loans’ interest rate is 2.9%. The number of loans and terms are determined on an individual basis. Eligible home repairs include water softeners, flooring, siding, termite control, alterations, kitchen cabinets, plastering, wiring, fencing, roofing, heating, plumbing, air conditioning, and insulation. Read more at

Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP): WAP is designed to help low-income seniors lower the cost of energy by making their homes more energy efficient. The community action programs complete the weatherization work throughout the state. Weatherization services include insulation of under floors, walls, and attics, replacement or repair, and weather stripping of windows and doors. Eligibility is based on household income, but assistance is based on the availability of funds. Seniors may be placed on waiting lists. Read more at

Healthcare Assistance

South Dakota Medicaid was formed and has been sponsored by the Department of Social Services Division of Economic Assistance specifically for seniors. Elder citizens who are 60 years of age or older and who have a disability or illness are encouraged to apply for this benefit. This benefit covers hospital stays, prescription bills assistance, nursing home care expenses, doctor appointments, and other health-related expenses. The link to their official website is as follows or dial 605 773 5013. In most states, including South Dakota, Medicaid for seniors also covers dental services, vision care and hearing aids for eligible seniors.

South Dakota Caregiver Support Program was created and has been operated by the South Dakota Department of Human Services for senior citizens who need personal care at their homes. People who are 60 years of age or older are eligible to benefit from this service. Some seniors may want to have a caregiver instead of moving into a nursing home. Some of the duties of caregivers are assisting the applicant at home, helping with bathing, dressing, cleaning, and housekeeping. Further information can be accessed by clicking on the following link or make a phone call at 1 833 663 9673.

South Dakota Medicare Program: Medicare is a federally funded program that covers older adults aged 65+ or disabled seniors who meet the low-income limits in South Dakota. Seniors have several Medicare Plan Options to consider, depending on their needs and circumstances. Most of these options are designed to help seniors find a plan that best work for them (suits their lifestyles and medical needs). For instance, Original Medicare is best suited for older adults and seniors with disabilities who don’t need much health insurance coverage.  For seniors in need of more comprehensive insurance coverage, the Medicare Advantage plan is their best option. Depending on an insurance company participating in the Medicare program, older adults may find additional benefits, like prescription drug add-ons or dental care. Visit to apply for Medicare program support.

Medical Assistance for Low-Income Facilities (LIF) Program: LIF’s purpose is to help low-income seniors, with or without private health insurance to receive full medical assistance coverage. The program which covers doctor’s appointments, hospitalization, prescriptions medication, dental care, rehabilitation, vision services, and similar services, is funded through Medicaid. The sooner seniors apply for the program support the better because support begins about three months after application. One must meet the low-income limits to qualify for assistance. Learn more about the program. Read more about the program at

Oral health is essential especially for seniors. Poor oral health can lead to many health problems including gum disease, tooth decay and even tooth loss. Fortunately, there are dental grants in South Dakota to help seniors maintain their oral health.

Utility Bills Assistance

South Dakota Low Income Energy Assistance was created by the federal authorities and has been managed by the State of South Dakota for persons who are having hardship in paying their utility bills. Senior residents are prioritized by this benefit and the amount of monthly help can differ based on the total size of the household. To see the application process, please click the link or make contact with 605 773 3766 or 800 233 8503.

South Dakota Weatherization Assistance was constituted and has been run by the South Dakota Department of Social Services to increase energy efficiency throughout the state. Older citizens who are interested in saving their income and energy are urged to apply for this assistance. Some of the services are repair of heating systems, insulating walls, attics, and under floors, weather-stripping windows and doors, and more. Find out more information at or call 1 800 604 5099.

South Dakota Public Utilities Commission: As seniors’ ages advance, connecting with families and friends becomes very important in life, and access to affordable communication services makes it easier to reach out when in need. Some of the programs that seniors can use for support include:

Lifeline: Designed to reduce the cost of telephone services, allowing seniors to communicate with their loved ones for less. Eligible older adults may qualify for up to a $9.25 discount broadband service every month. The broadband services must meet the minimum quality standards. Telephone service users may qualify for up to $5.25 per month. The program beneficiaries may receive a discount on a wireline or wireless phone service. However, older adults cannot receive benefits on both services because the FCC rules do not allow the use of more than one service. More information is available at

Affordable Connectivity Program: Designed to help older adults pay for their broadband service to enable them to connect with family or have access to healthcare. The program offers monthly discounts on internet services and purchasing a tablet, desktop computer, or laptop. An older adult must meet low-income limits to qualify for program support. Discounts on laptops or computers are given once, and cannot exceed $100. Internet service discounts cannot exceed $30 and $75 for seniors residing on qualifying Tribal lands. Find out more at

Food Assistance

South Dakota Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as food stamps, has been managed by the South Dakota Department of Social Services for people who are having difficulties in purchasing healthy and nutritious food. Senior citizens and their families are priority groups for this food assistance. The total size, income, and allowable expenses are the main requirements for the evaluation process. The food boxes are prepared based on the applicants’ diet. For further information and to apply, go to or get in touch with 605 773 3653 or 877 999 5612.

South Dakota Commodity Supplemental Food Program has been sponsored by the federal authorities and led by the State of South Dakota for low and middle-income elderly people who are 60 years old or above. Some senior residents may not afford to purchase healthy and nutritious food because of economic reasons. Some of them may not cook at their homes due to health issues. These people are qualified for this food program. Eligible candidates will be receiving food packages based on their health condition. Read more at or call 605 773 3134.

Transportation Assistance for Seniors

The Division of LTSS offers transportation support to senior South Dakotans by funding the local transit systems that offer free rides to eligible older adults. The funds are awarded by the Older Americans Act. Nonprofits and local government agencies offer transportation services to seniors aged 60 at a suggested donation. Seniors can get rides to medical appointments, nutrition programs, senior center activities, shopping, and adult day services. Find transportation locations in South Dakota here.

Coordinated Transportation Initiative: South Dakota Departments of Transportation, Human Services, and Social Services run this initiative that aims to offer transportation services to older adults. The goal of this initiative is to enhance the utilization and ridership of vehicles to help meet a greater number of transportation needs among seniors.

Dakota Transit Association: Dakota Transit Association is a coalition consisting of public agencies and private organizations that come together to support local programs aiming at providing transportation assistance to low-income seniors in North and South Dakota. Visit for more information.

Assistance from Charities and Nonprofits for Seniors

Bethel Lutheran Home Foundation Inc: This organization is committed to assisting and enhancing the condition of the bethel Lutheran home in Madison.  The goal is to help seniors remain in their homes as long as possible to prevent or delay their nationalization. Older adults may have access to some extra services. Read more at

Senior Companions of South Dakota: This is a volunteer program dedicated to offering in-home support and respite care services to seniors and older adults living with disabilities. The program is operated by the Good Samaritan Society and serves over 50 communities across the state. Services include transportation, light housekeeping, meal planning and preparation, socialization, and companionship through home visits. More information is available at

Western South Dakota Senior Services Inc: The goal of this organization is to assist the elderly South Dakotans in aging health and strong by providing services that aim at promoting their independence, health, and socialization. Learn more about the program at

Assistance for Senior Veterans

Veterans are respected and valued in South Dakota because they have served the country well. The South Dakota Department of Labor & Regulation offers several services to older veterans at no cost. There are also specialized services for eligible senior veterans. The specialized services are offered through trained Veteran Specialists. Learn more about Veterans’ specialized services at

Benefits for Senior Military Members and Veterans in South Dakota: There are numerous benefits for senior Service members, veterans, and their families. The services include education assistance, hunting and fishing benefits, and reduced fees at the State Parks.

South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs offers support services, including information, assistance, counseling, and referrals. Learn more at

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What financial assistance programs are available for seniors in South Dakota? Seniors in South Dakota can access the Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) for help with heating bills, the South Dakota Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program for fresh produce, and the Senior Health Information and Insurance Education (SHIINE) program to assist with Medicare-related expenses.

2. How can seniors apply for Medicaid in South Dakota? Medicaid applications for seniors in South Dakota can be submitted online through the DSS website, by mail, or in person at local Department of Social Services offices. Essential documentation includes proof of income, assets, South Dakota residency, and age.

3. What housing assistance is available for seniors in South Dakota? The South Dakota Housing Development Authority (SDHDA) offers the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) for rental assistance and provides resources on affordable housing options for seniors, including home repair and rehabilitation programs for homeowners.

4. Can seniors receive assistance with utility bills in South Dakota? Yes, the Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) provides financial aid to eligible seniors to help cover heating costs during the winter months, ensuring they stay warm and safe.

5. How do seniors get help with prescription medications in South Dakota? The South Dakota Prescription Drug Assistance Program provides financial assistance to qualifying seniors to help cover the costs of prescription medications, complementing Medicare Part D coverage.

6. Are there property tax relief programs for seniors in South Dakota? The South Dakota Property Tax Reduction Program from Municipal Taxes offers property tax relief to seniors based on income criteria, helping to reduce the financial burden of property taxes on their primary residence.

7. What in-home care services can seniors access in South Dakota? The South Dakota Department of Human Services offers in-home services through the Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) waivers, including personal care, homemaking, and respite care, to support seniors living independently.

8. How can seniors access transportation services in South Dakota? Transportation services for seniors are available through local Area Agencies on Aging, providing essential rides to medical appointments, grocery shopping, and social activities, often at reduced rates or for free.

9. What nutritional programs support seniors in South Dakota? The Elderly Nutrition Program offers congregate meals at local senior centers and home-delivered meals through programs like Meals on Wheels, ensuring seniors have access to nutritious meals and social engagement opportunities.

10. How can seniors in South Dakota receive legal assistance? Legal assistance for seniors in South Dakota is available through South Dakota Legal Services, offering free legal advice and representation on issues such as healthcare, housing, consumer protection, and elder rights.