Unemployment Benefits II (also called "Hartz IV" or "ALG II") is basic substance income ("Grundsicherung") provided by the Jobcenter. It is paid to make sure you can maintain your livelihood and that of your family, i.e. pay for food, clothing, hygiene items, electricity, bus and train tickets, etc. An adult currently receives €449 per month as Unemployment Benefits II, and, depending on their age, you will receive between €285 and €376 per month for your children (as of 2022). In addition, the rental costs – i.e. the rent, ancillary costs and heating costs – are also covered. You can learn more in "Does my apartment need to have a specific size and rent?".
The Jobcenter can provide you support if you live in Germany and do not have enough money to care for yourself and your family. Under certain conditions, the Jobcenter helps people who have never worked in Germany, those who have been unemployed for more than a year and individuals who earn little despite working. If you are in one of these groups, you can seek financial support for yourself and your family from the Jobcenter. Such support is called "Unemployment Benefits II" or "Arbeitslosengeld II" (also "ALG II") and is often referred to as "Hartz IV"("Hartz 4"). The Jobcenter staff will also help you look for a job. Jobcenter can also take over the costs for German courses or further training programmes if it can help you find a job.