Food assistance resources
SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly known as food stamps), is a federal safety net program providing low-income Americans with assistance to feed themselves and their families.
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What is Snap?
SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly known as food stamps), is a federal safety net program providing low-income Americans with assistance to feed themselves and their families. In most cases, SNAP is a temporary, short-term solution for individuals and families to help until they get back on their feet. On average, SNAP participants stay on the program less than a year. The SNAP program is funded through the United States Department of Agriculture and is administered in Arkansas through the Arkansas Department of Human Services.
DIRECTOR OF SNAP OUTREACH
Lance Whitney has been actively involved with the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance since 2015. Lance was introduced to the Alliance by attending fundraisers for the organization and learning about the need to fight food insecurity in the state. Lance co-chaired Serving Up Solutions for two years and then began working for the Alliance in 2017. Before coming to the Alliance, he graduated from the University of Arkansas in Industrial Management (Business/ Engineering) and worked for 22 years in Manufacturing and Design. As a native Arkansan who had begun to better understand food insecurity, he easily accepted the opportunity to work in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Outreach division of the Alliance. Every community in the state of Arkansas can greatly benefit from the SNAP program: SNAP helps boost local economies, improve community health, and provide hungry individuals and families with the help they need. Lance’s mission is to increase SNAP availability to every Arkansas county. This will be achieved through building, training and supporting a network that reaches the food insecure and through educating community supporters statewide
How it works:
SNAP benefits are delivered monthly to eligible participants through electronic debit (EBT) cards that can be used to purchase groceries. Most grocery stores in Arkansas accept SNAP. The EBT cards are programmed to allow the purchase of food but deny other household purchases such as vitamin supplements, hot or prepared food, non-food grocery items, alcoholic beverages and cigarettes. For most households, SNAP benefits will not cover their total monthly food cost. To ensure their families have enough food on the table, many low-income people must depend on their local food pantries to bridge the gap until the next month’s benefit is available.
Eligibility is based on income and assets, citizenship, and dynamics of the SNAP household: how many members are in the family, the ages of family members, etc. To find out more about eligibility and benefits, contact the Alliance’s SNAP-ARK call center at 1-833-762-7275 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Monday-Friday, or contact SNAP Outreach Director Lance Whitney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
RULES AFFECTING ABLE-BODIED ADULTS WITHOUT DEPENDENTS: The time limits allowing able-bodied adults without dependents (ABAWDs) to receive food assistance benefits have changed. For more information about Employment and Training Opportunity programs in your county, please see the below graphic of where these E&T programs are offered.
PLEASE NOTE: Due to the circumstances of COVID-19, many aspects of the SNAP program — including eligibility, applications and benefits — have changed. For more information about the current status of SNAP and Pandemic EBT (PEBT) and for help filling out your application, please contact the Alliance’s SNAP-ARK call center at 1-833-762-7275. Our SNAP outreach team is staffing the call center from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Monday-Wednesday, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. on Thursdays, and a Spanish translator is available on Tuesdays from noon-3 p.m. and on Thursdays from noon- 8 p.m. They can help answer your questions about SNAP and walk you through the application process.
How to sign up
BECOME A SNAP OUTREACH VOLUNTEER
PLEASE NOTE: Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, volunteering looks a lot different in our current world. Please continue to check our website for more information as we explore virtual and safe, socially distanced volunteer opportunities.
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The Alliance Alert goes out to members, advocates and others who want to stay up on hunger issues in Arkansas. See our latest newsletter.