Get Senior Food Stamp Help With the SNAP Nutrition Program
Connecting Older Adults in Northeast Florida with S.N.A.P. to End Senior Hunger
When it comes to eating a healthy diet, millions of Americans 60 and over face a double whammy: a fixed income and rising food costs.
For example, in northeast Florida almost 30,000 people who are potentially eligible for SNAP assistance are not tapping into this resource, leaving the opportunity for groceries and better nutrition untouched.
ElderSource has been awarded a grant to support a National Council on Aging (NCOA) nationwide effort to help older adults struggling to buy groceries apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to supplement their food budget.
SNAP helps people with low-income buy healthy food. A food assistance household is normally a group of people who live together and buy food and cook meals together. If your household passes the Food Assistance Program’s eligibility rules, the amount of food assistance benefits you get depends on the number of people in your household and how much money is left after certain expenses are subtracted.
ElderSource has identified and will be contacting individuals who are potentially eligible to receive SNAP benefits, but are not taking advantage of this assistance.
ElderSource staff can help you determine your eligibility and enroll you in the program. Individuals must pass all eligibility rules to get food assistance benefits.
Click here for SNAP Eligibility Guidelines PDF
For more information about how to enroll in SNAP, call the ElderSource SNAP Champion, Sherrie Keshner at 904.391.6688.
Volunteers Needed. Because there are so many seniors needing assistance, many volunteers are needed to help them complete the applications online, as well as educate the community against stigmas that prevent older adults from utilizing this program. Specifically, ElderSource is looking for two to four individuals who can counsel residents in St. Johns County to access SNAP benefits.
A Heart to Help – Meet our SNAP Volunteer, Ms. Barbara Page
SNAP volunteer, Barbara Page, truly has a heart for helping others.
Ms. Page recently reapplied for SNAP – Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – recognizing she could benefit from the program and supplement her grocery bill. While working with one of our agency SNAP volunteers, she decided she wanted to give back and become a SNAP volunteer herself!
“I felt like it was just a good way to give back to others in the community, since I was on the receiving end,” she said. When she saw how she could personally benefit from SNAP, she was more than excited to help others. “It was like manna from heaven,” she said of receiving her official SNAP benefits. It brought joy to her to be able to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables.
Ms. Page has a long history of volunteering dating back many years. One of her first volunteer experiences was at a local retirement home in Jacksonville, where she gave rides to help seniors go grocery shopping and to doctor’s appointments. She has also volunteered with the Salvation Army, a food distribution center and at the Clay County Literacy Coalition.
“I like to think I’m a compassionate person,” she said. “There’s something about the satisfaction of contributing to the community and people who are in need.”
For Ms. Page it’s not about the dollar amount she received from SNAP, but the idea of knowing it’s there to help supplement what she already has. She understands living on a fixed-income and having to make tough decisions.
“If you aren’t cutting back on medications, usually food is the next thing to go,” she said. Ms. Page expressed the importance of older people being able to eat healthy and she believes SNAP can help make this happen.
Not only is Ms. Page there to help others walk through the process of filing their SNAP applications online, but she can personally testify that it’s worth it. Knowing that she’s able to help others who have been in her shoes, helps make her volunteer experience more meaningful.
For more information about how to enroll in SNAP or become a volunteer, call the ElderSource SNAP Champion, Sherrie Keshner at 904.391.6688.
ADRC HelpLine Hours
Monday through Friday
8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Call: Local: 904.391.6699 Toll Free: 888.242.4464
Hearing or visually impaired call Florida Relay Services at 7-1-1.