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CalFresh Puts Food on the Table
We help eligible neighbors access CalFresh (food stamps) benefits, one of the best ways to end hunger.
CalFresh, formerly known as food stamps, is a nutrition assistance program for low-income individuals and families. In California, only about half of eligible households receive these benefits. Our Outreach Team is dedicated to getting more eligible people connected to this valuable program.
Because CalFresh brings federal dollars into low-income communities, it is one of the best tools we have to end hunger. The average monthly benefit provides $215 per household to buy food. Unfortunately, in San Francisco and Marin, an estimated 56,000 people may be eligible for CalFresh but are not enrolled. Many don’t apply for the benefit because they are overwhelmed by the application process, perceive stigma toward getting assistance or have immigration concerns.
Our CalFresh Outreach Team provides application assistance throughout San Francisco and Marin. We provide extensive training and technical assistance to build capacity in other community based organizations to ensure that people in need of application assistance can get access to services all over San Francisco and Marin. We also facilitate same-day service events in collaboration with the San Francisco Human Services Agency, Marin Health and Human Services, and our network of community based organization partners. At our events, clients are usually in and out the door within an hour with a determination of benefits, a free bag of produce, and often their CalFresh EBT card.
At the systemic level, the Food Bank Advocacy Team works to increase CalFresh access by advocating for changes to administrative processes and dual enrollment in health care and food assistance, as well as through legislation.
Food Bank staff helped
to apply for CalFresh benefits.
Families enrolled by the Food Bank received close to
in benefits to help buy groceries.
The purchasing power of those new benefits
provided enough food for over
It was because of the Food Bank that I found out I could qualify for CalFresh. The $345 I receive in CalFresh benefits each month is very helpful. It takes a lot of worry off my shoulders. It’s so helpful to know that no matter what, at least our food is covered.”
- Roxana, CalFresh recipient, San Rafael
I’m relieved that I can spend fifty dollars at the grocery store and not have to worry that I won’t be able to afford anything else that week. I might even be able to buy something special every now and then. Something special like fresh corn on the cob.”
- Santos, CalFresh recipient, San Rafael