SNAP in the news over Thanksgiving week break - MA SNAP outreach for seniors, HIP successes, FRAC video and more
Just want to flag for you some powerful news stories from the Springfield Union, Worcester Telegram, FRAC and a college student blog. Please amplify through twitter, Facebook etc.
The LAST Boston SNAP Coalition meeting is tomorrow, Nov 28th Tuesday, from 10 to Noon at St Francis House 39 Boylston Street, 6th floor). Updates on what's happening nationally and in the state are on the agenda. See you there !
SNAP and hunger in the news:
SNAP outreach for seniors, first big step in closing SNAP Gap:
Springfield Union/MassLive: 11/24/17 Massachusetts tries to enroll more seniors in food stamps with new Holyoke-based unit "In January, the state will open a statewide senior assistance office at its location on Front Street in Holyoke, which will be dedicated to helping seniors sign up for the benefits they are eligible for. State officials are also making a renewed effort to track down seniors who are eligible for food stamps but have not enrolled. Advocates for seniors and low-income individuals say the outreach is necessary, as many seniors who are eligible for public assistance find it hard to apply. Some lost benefits due to problems with the state's modernization of its food stamp system.... there are 106,000 adults over age 60 who are on MassHealth and are likely eligible for food stamps but have not signed up. Another approximately 125,000 seniors are not eligible for MassHealth, based on their income, but may be eligible for food stamps. Advocates refer to this as the "SNAP gap" -- the gap between the people eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and those who actually obtain benefits."
See also Worcester Telegram of 11/13/17 re “Expediated Help Coming for Seniors with SNAP outreach.
Massachusetts HIP program wildly successful:
Worcester Telegram, 11/25/17. Farmers, families in need reap benefits from produce program As of November, about 33,000 Massachusetts households, comprising 58,000 clients, have accessed HIP benefits, according to the state Office of Health and Human Services. About 50 percent of those households include an elderly person, and about 34 percent include a child in the household. The state also noted that HIP has resulted in dramatically more SNAP sales at farmers markets, farm stands, mobile markets and CSA shares throughout the state. Approximately 165 new authorized fruit and vegetable farmers have started processing SNAP since December.
Must See Video - Hunger is Solvable;
Youtube video: More than 41 million Americans live in households that struggle against hunger. This Thanksgiving, FRAC is celebrating the critical role the federal nutrition programs serve as proven solutions in ensuring more people get the nutritious food they need to thrive.
Homeless but Not Voiceless in College:
Guest blog is authored by Clare Cady, Director of Community Engagement at the forthcoming HOPE Center for College, Community, and Justice and co-founder of the College and University Food Bank Alliance. “Get to know all these people because they’ll to help us too. They’ve been there. Ok, they’ve been there when you haven’t. Even though I know you want to help, and you have the heart. You’ve got a backbone here of people that have experienced this. Don’t waste that at all.” https://medium.com/@saragoldrickrab/homeless-but-not-voiceless-in-college-a6430f032c0c