The Center staff pose in front of The Center in McKinleyville | Photo: Brianne Nicole Photography


After announcing last year the launch of the Guaranteed Basic Income Pilot Program, the McKinleyville Family Resource Center (McKFRC) announced today that the program is now accepting referrals for eligible individuals and families to receive $920 per month for a year and a half. 

The program, which McKFRC has locally named the Humboldt Income Program, is one of seven Guaranteed Income Pilot Programs funded by the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) across the state. Out of the seven selected nonprofits, McKFRC is the only one that serves a rural area, Robin Baker, co executive director of McKFRC, told the Outpost, and was awarded nearly $2.5 million for the program last year. 

The pilot program is designed to help pregnant individuals and young adults who have  aged out of the foster care program, and each of the participating nonprofits has a different set of criteria for accepting applicants. The Humboldt Income Program is geared toward people within their first two trimesters of pregnancy. 

The program is available to anyone who is at least 18 years of age, lives in Humboldt County, is currently within their first 27 weeks of pregnancy and is at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level. Here are the current income levels by family size to qualify.

Image from McKFRC’s website

Applicants must be referred by one of MckFRC’s referral partners, including United Indian Health Services, Open Door Community Health Centers, North Country Prenatal Services and Redwood Community Health Center Pregnancy Services, Hoopa TANF, Redwoods Rural Health Center, Providence Medical Group, K’ima:w Medical Center, CalWORKs, or Providence St. Joseph Hospital Paso a Paso and CARE Network programs. If you would like to apply, you should call whichever of those agencies you use. Once you’re referred, you will receive a text or email with a little bit of paperwork to fill out, but it is very easy and should take about 15 minutes to complete, Baker said. 

If you read the Outpost’s previous story about the program, then you might have noticed that the amount of the payments has decreased from the monthly $1,000 that was initially promised. Baker said this was because each recipient of the grant had to also match one third of the funds through their own fundraising efforts, and, unfortunately, McKFRC did not meet their goal. But the nonprofit was still able to round up more than $1 million through local donations and worked with CDSS to lower the monthly payment amount to $920 for 18 months. 

The referral period started on Dec.4, and Baker said that they have already enrolled 39 people in the program, which means there’s still space for 111 more. Enrollment will continue until all 150 people have enrolled. 

Baker said that she is very excited to be launching this program, especially at a time when financial assistance is badly needed. McKFRC is a part of The Center, a multi-agency facility that provides assistance with many assistance programs, including WIC, CalFresh, MediCal, Child Welfare Services and more. Baker said that since opening in early 2022, the Center has seen “a higher need” recently for all of its assistance programs. 

Though the Humboldt Income Program is only able to help people through pregnancy and very early parenthood, Baker hopes that if the pilot program is successful, it can be extended to help more people in the future. Unlike many other assistance programs, which only provide assistance for specific needs, such as groceries, the guaranteed basic income program has “no strings attached,” Baker said, and can be used by the recipients however they see fit, which aligns with McKFRC’s mission. 

“The McKinleyville Family Resource Center holds the belief that people are experts in their own lives and their own needs,” Baker said. “We’re not going in and telling them how to spend the money.”

You can find more information on the Humboldt Income Program on McKFRC’s website.