Updated: Feb 21
Are your recently unemployed, struggling to feed your family or have been unemployed for some time but didn’t qualify for CalFresh? There’s good news; a recent change in rules and a stimulus package to combat the COVID surge in unemployment means you may receive up to $234 per month in CalFresh as an individual or as much as $782 as a family of four.
CalFresh, California’ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) helps qualifying
low-income individuals/families access the food they need to stay healthy. CalFresh benefits provide dollars via an EBT debit card to purchase nutritious groceries at participating stores to include farmers markets, Albertsons, Vons, Safeway, ALDI, Walmart, Amazon and more.
The on-going COVID pandemic has led to climbing unemployment rates and residents struggling to eat or feed their families. “As I speak, 1 in 7 households in America, more than 1 in 5 Black and Latino households in America report they don’t have enough to eat,” President Biden said in a speech last month, reported by CNBC.
To help feed America, the latest stimulus packaged that was passed in December 2020, allocated $13 billion to SNAP giving an increase of 15% for all recipients until June 2021. This increase equates to roughly an extra $25 per month for individuals and $100 for a family of four.
Furthermore, a new ruling means the federal unemployment boost does not count towards people’s income when they apply for CalFresh, meaning more unemployed people can apply. This new ruling is life changing for almost 1 million Californians caught in the unemployment crisis. A 70-year-old unemployed Long Beach resident who was struggling to put food on the table was denied CalFresh three times until he sought the assistance of Help Me Help You (HMHY). The Benefits Advocates at HMHY specialize in providing FREE CalFresh application assistance as well as help to access other essential services to include food pantry delivery, social security benefits, MediCal and more. With insight into the CalFresh rule changes and investigating why the application was denied numerous times, Brandon, HMHY Benefits Advocate, submitted the information required for the client to gain a successful outcome for CalFresh and Long Beach Food Pantry Delivery. “I could not make ends meet to buy groceries and was determined to keep trying to get the CalFresh benefits that I believed I was entitled to. I’m very grateful to Brandon for finally getting my CalFresh application approved and also helping me to get free nutritious groceries each week through Help Me Help You Food Pantry Delivery,” said HMHY client.
Many CalFresh participating stores also offer home delivery for groceries purchased using the CalFresh EBT card. The advantages to qualifying for a CalFresh EBT card don’t stop there. If you are eligible for CalFresh, you may qualify for numerous other benefits to include National School Lunch Program for FREE/reduced prices of nutritious school meals and other services for school children; Obama Phone; fee waivers for college apps, admissions tests; discounted utility services and transportation; health & wellness services and more.
To find out more about CalFresh and other benefits you may qualify for or to file an application, contact our expert Benefits Advocates on (562) 612-5001 or visit helpmehelpu.org/services.