SNAP Matters

Dear Friends,

At the Coalition, we know that to address the ongoing challenges of food insecurity, we need to first address the immediate food needs of individuals and families. But without federal nutrition programs, like SNAP, food pantries and soup kitchens cannot meet the needs of those experiencing hunger. It takes an ecosystem of programs working together.

This week we worked in the following ways. . . 

  • By the end of this week our SNAP Hotline Team anticipates that our lead list will be reduced to close to 50 people, after a high of 400 people over the past weeks. Last week we completed 108 pre-screenings and submitted 91 applications. We continue to operate our SNAP Hotline at 215-430-0556, Monday – Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.   

SNAP matters to millions of people and children who rely on the program to put food on the table. It lifts individuals and families out of poverty and is the most effective way to put dollars for food into people’s pockets. During this public health and economic crisis, hear from SNAP participants on why SNAP Matters – now more than ever.

  • Our work on the Advocacy and Policy front helps ensure that federal nutrition programs, like SNAP, continue to provide essential resources to fight food insecurity. This week we are joining with national, state, and community-based organizations across the country in signing a letter urging Senate leadership and the White House to immediately boost Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits and make needed investments in other critical nutrition programs with proven health and economic impacts.
  • A refresher: the Heroes Act (H.R. 6800), which the U.S. House passed back on May 15, includes a much needed SNAP boost. Now, we need the Senate to act! 
  • We know firsthand from our work that COVID-19 has exacerbated levels of food insecurity, which were already too high in our region. Increasing SNAP benefits is a win-win response to our current public health and economic crisis. SNAP is a proven program that alleviates food insecurity while also stimulating the economy.

NOTE: this is a sign-on letter for organizations onlyPlease share this letter widely with anyone you know who has the ability to add their organization’s support. Senate leadership and the Administration need to hear the urgency of increasing SNAP benefits 

This week, we have also worked with our WIC allies to draft Comments to the PA WIC State Plan and are encouraging:

  • Additional WIC allies to sign-on here by noon on Sunday, May 31. Please sign-on organizations/agencies only and sign-on only if you have the approval to do so.   
  • WIC clients to share their feedback as well. The Coalition and our partner, Just Harvest, will submit client feedback on their behalf. The state needs to hear stories from every county.
  • We continue to answer calls from people looking for food in their neighborhood, this week we connected 24 individuals and households with pantries, soup kitchens, city box sites, and other food resources. We are beginning to follow-up with people after our initial call. We continue to explore additional resources and partnerships. This week through our Food Rescue program we served 510 people.

With 3 days of fundraising left for this year’s virtual Race Against Hunger, we continue to explore additional ways to support our participating Food Pantry and Soup Kitchen’s fundraising. These dollars provide essential funding for food pantry and soup kitchen programs to meet immediate needs of individuals and families throughout the year. Fundraising ends May 31.  

SNAP STORY
This week we received a heartbreaking call to the SNAP Hotline from a 65 year old daughter on behalf of her mother. Her mother was 84 years old and suffered a stroke resulting in her being paralyzed on her left side. She had been recently released from a nursing home and needed food resources. The daughter’s hours at work were reduced due to COVID-19, so things were very challenging for them. The daughter was crying throughout the call. Sadly, the mother was not eligible for SNAP benefits due to her immigration status. We submitted a SNAP application for the daughter, as well as submitting an application for emergency cash assistance. Our hearts go out to the many individuals and families who are struggling. And while we wish we could do more, we are grateful that our SNAP Hotline Team can help people navigate the application process and go the extra mile for those who need it.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  • Register at https://hungercoalition.salsalabs.org/advocacyalerts/index.html to receive up to date Advocacy Alerts.
  • Make a donation to support our work.
  • You have 2 more days to support the Virtual Race Against Hunger fundraising efforts to benefit the Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger. Fundraising for the Race continues until May 31st.

Thank you for your support as we continue to work to connect individuals and families to the food resources they need. We wish you good health amid the challenges of the pandemic.

-The Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger

Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger
123 Chestnut St. Suite 401 | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106
215-430-0555 | info@hungercoalition.org

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