SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, is the “new" name for food stamps. Participating households receive money every month on a debit card that can be used for groceries. The Food Basket’s SNAP Outreach team works in communities island-wide to help residents complete an eligibility pre-assessment and also provide aid in the completion of the SNAP benefits application.
The Food Basket is dedicated to walking alongside families and individuals step-by-step through the application process to help people get the support they need. Households may qualify for SNAP based on their monthly income. The application process includes a paper application and a phone or in-person interview.
Why SNAP Outreach?
Despite SNAP’s potential as a supplement to food budgets for struggling families, nearly a quarter of Hawai`i Island residents who potentially qualify don’t actually claim their benefits. This may be due to a variety of factors, including lack of time and transportation, limited English proficiency, physical and cognitive impairments, and stigma about requesting help.
The Food Basket’s SNAP Outreach team works island-wide to alleviate these barriers, meeting people where they gather – at food pantries, congregate meal sites, shelters, school, and community events.
SNAP is a powerful resource in the fight against hunger and has the potential to feed more families in Hawai`i than all other food programs combined.
In 2014 alone, SNAP brought more than $525 million in food assistance benefits into Hawai`i – stretching clients’ food budgets, reinforcing the charitable food system, and strengthening the local economy.