Get Food Assistance With Snap

If you are struggling to put nutritious, safe food on your table, the SNAP program is here to help.

SNAP stands for Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program. Formerly known as food stamps, the SNAP program has been helping low income people along with the disabled, the elderly and children for decades. Millions of Americans are receiving nutritious food who otherwise would not be getting the nutrition they need to live a healthy life.

The federal government is still in charge of this food supplement program. What they do is pay for the program itself, and then all 50 states handle the operating and administering costs, which helps offset the federal government's costs.

The Food and Nutrition Service is sort of like the marketing division of SNAP. What they do is spread the word about SNAP with state agencies, nutrition educators, neighborhood and faith-based organizations to ensure that people are educated on the program and they know how to apply and access this food benefit.

People approved for SNAP receive a card that resembles a credit card called an EBT card. This card can be used like an ATM card to buy SNAP approved food in the network of authorized stores.

Are You Eligible for SNAP?

You will need to meet the income guidelines and have limited resources to be eligible for SNAP. If your household includes someone elderly or disabled, you will only need to meet the net income limit.

Read This to Save Yourself Some Time

Before you receive the SNAP contact information, let’s go through the list of those who are NOT eligible for SNAP. If you fall under any one of these descriptions, you do not qualify for SNAP. You will only be wasting time if you apply, so read through this list carefully:

If you are…

  • a worker on strike
  • a college student
  • an undocumented immigrant are not eligible to apply for SNAP.

Also, some legal immigrants may be denied. Able-bodied adults without children can only receive SNAP benefits for 3 months except when you are in a work-training program or working at least 20 hours per week.

These requirements can change. The government does adjust the restrictions during hard economic times or when the unemployment rate is high across the nation.

Please understand going in that SNAP benefits are not unlimited. You cannot load up 10 grocery carts every week or anything outrageous. How much SNAP benefits you receive will be determined by the number of people in your household and your income. Net income is used to calculate the amount. Generally the formula estimates 30 percent of the income will be spent on food.

SNAP Benefits Cannot Be Used Anytime for Anything

When you get approved for SNAP and receive your EBT card, you do not get to spend the benefits on anything you want. SNAP is for food made and consumed at home. This means you are restricted on what items you can buy. You will be required to stick to the basics like bread, vegetables, fruits, meats and dairy.

These items cannot be purchased through SNAP: Alcohol, Tobacco, Vitamins, Medication, Non Food items. You also cannot purchase hot food items at stores. Some baked goods are available.

Most restaurants do not accept SNAP payments. However, your community may have a few who are authorized to accept SNAP benefits. These restaurants are known to serve low-cost, ready-to-eat meals for the homeless, elderly and disabled. There has been some controversy in the past over items like “junk food” or luxury items. At this time, those items can be purchased with SNAP.


All the SNAP Benefits Info You Need to Get Started

Below are a few places where you can go online to check your SNAP eligibility:

SNAP’s eligibility page lays out the requirements and how your allotted benefits are computed.

SNAP’s pre-screening toolcan be used to determine your eligibility for SNAP benefits.

To find a SNAP office in your state where you can apply, visit SNAP’s Application and Local Office Locators page.

Every state has a SNAP hotline. Here is a list showing all 50.