Employment and Social Services

Our Mission:  "We administer employment and social services, preserving the dignity of children, families and adults."

Our Vision:  "Partnering for a safe, healthy, and self-reliant community."

CalWORKs Cash Assistance

CalWORKs is a public assistance program that provides temporary cash assistance to needy California families. The program serves all 58 counties in the state and is operated locally by the Butte County Department of Employment and Social Services. If a family has little or no cash and needs housing, food, utilities, clothing or medical care, they may be eligible to receive immediate short-term help. 

Families that apply and qualify for ongoing assistance receive money each month to help pay for housing, food and other necessary expenses, for a temporary period of time. 

The amount of a family’s monthly assistance payment depends on several factors, including the number of people in the family who are eligible and any special needs of those family members. Also, the family’s income is considered in calculating the amount of cash aid received. The cash aid is provided in the form of an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, similar to a bank debit card.

Who Qualifies

Specific eligibility requirements take into account an applicant's citizenship, age, income, resources, assets and other factors. Generally, services are available to: 

  • Families that have a child(ren) in the home who has been deprived of parental support or care because of the absence, disability or death of either parent.
  • Families with a child(ren) when both parents are in the home but the principal earner is unemployed.
  • Needy caretaker relatives of a foster child(ren). 

To remain eligible for services, recipients of cash aid must participate in work or work-related activities, specified in their individualized “Welfare-to-Work Plan”. For adults there is a 48-month lifetime limit on eligibility for cash assistance.

How to Apply

Online:  Visit BenefitsCal.org online to apply.  

By Phone:  Call The Butte County Customer Service Center at 877.410.8803.

In Person:


Butte Community Employment Center - Chico
765 East Ave                                                                          Chico, CA 95928

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Butte Community Employment Center - Oroville
78 Table Mountain Blvd.
Oroville, CA 95965

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CalWORKs Applicants must have proof of:

  • Income
  • Property
  • Citizenship Status
  • Age
  • Social Security Numbers
  • Residence
  • Shelter Costs
  • Work or School Status
  • Financial resources

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 Contact DESS
 Locations & Hours

Customer Service Center
877.410.8803 (phone only)
Monday - Friday
7:30am to 4:30pm

Excludes Holidays

Butte Community Employment Center - Chico
765 East Avenue
Chico, CA 95926

Butte Community Employment Center - Oroville
78 Table Mountain Blvd.
Oroville, CA 95965

Office Hours
Monday - Friday
8:00am - 4:30pm 

Butte County Community Services Center
7200 Skyway Rd
Paradise, CA 95969

Excludes Holidays

Full list of DESS locations.


Public Assistance Overpayment
More information about overpayments and notices of overpayment.

Apply for Service Online
Go to C4Yourself.com
Apply in person at one of the Butte Community Employment Centers

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