There are over 118,000 individuals in Allegheny County alone who qualify for SNAP/food stamps but are not receiving those benefits. The Food Security Partnership and its member organization, Just Harvest, are working to improve access to this critical federal nutrition assistance program.
We are also promoting the School Breakfast Challenge in PA, which is a statewide initiative to increase breakfast participation. In Allegheny County, only about 1 in 3 kids who are eligible for free/reduced school breakfasts actually participate.
The FSP and Just Harvest are also promoting the Summer Food Program in Allegheny County, where there are nearly 70,000 kids eligible but who go hungry all summer without access to school meals. People can dial 211 to find their nearest summer feeding site, most of which are open for any child because they are operated in areas where 50% or more of the kids are eligible for free/reduced school meals.
We are looking for new summer food sites (there is no fee to be part of this program!) and for volunteers to do fun activities with the kids at these sites. If you know someone who is interested please contact the FSP!
We have quarterly committee meetings on how we can increase participation in WIC. The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) is a federal assistance program of the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for healthcare and nutrition of low-income pregnant women, breastfeeding women, and infants and children under the age of five.
In Allegheny County, there are almost 11,000 individuals eligible but not enrolled in this program. Please let the FSP know if you are interested in meeting with the committee to discuss boosting WIC participation.