One in ten people in Eastern Massachusetts is food insecure. This means that they do not always know where their next meal will come from. The federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly food stamps, is our country’s most effective anti-hunger tool.
SNAP serves low-income families, seniors, people with disabilities, the homeless, the unemployed, low-wage workers, veterans, and active military. It allows more households to remain self-sufficient, reducing the number of people reliant on hunger-relief organizations, like food pantries.
In Massachusetts, about 750,000 people receive SNAP benefits to buy the food they need. However, there are about 570,000 residents living below the 200% federal poverty line (the threshold for SNAP eligibility) who don’t receive SNAP benefits.
GBFB provides SNAP application assistance and outreach as a critical strategy toward ending hunger across Eastern Massachusetts.
The SNAP outreach program at GBFB aims to increase awareness of and enrollment in SNAP throughout our service area. We visit community locations, such as senior centers and elder housing sites, to find people who need help. We provide resources at our free mobile markets to ensure that our clients know about SNAP. We also partner with our member agencies to offer application assistance to clients when they come to food pantries for food.
Since beginning our SNAP outreach program in 2014, GBFB has helped 569 people apply for benefits. As a result, people in need across Massachusetts have received 392,996 additional meals! Clients can reach us via phone, email, or our online referral form for support.
Check out the SNAP page on our website to learn more.