The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is the cornerstone of the nation's nutrition safety net and is an investment in our future. SNAP offers the opportunity for improved nutrition and progress toward economic self-sufficiency for participants who become stronger members of the community. However, too many low-income people, especially seniors, working people, and legal immigrants, who are eligible for SNAP do not participate and thus forego assistance that could stretch their food dollars and help improve their nutrition. Outreach can help increase participation in SNAP, which will result in multiple benefits for participants, states and communities alike.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) allocates funding to the Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) to conduct SNAP Outreach. DHS contracts with community organizations to carry out outreach activities.
OSU Extension Family and Community Health (FCH) is a SNAP Outreach contractor, raising awareness of SNAP and providing information about applying for benefits. Through SNAP Outreach activities, staff will aim to achieve goals in support of the mission of DHS SNAP in areas of program access (PA) and program information (PI).
The 6 SNAP Outreach goals include:
- Potential SNAP participants will receive application assistance when needed. (PA)
- SNAP participants will understand reporting and recertification requirements, and will be able to navigate local offices and other community resources. (PI)
- SNAP participants will provide accurate information to SNAP office workers. (PI)
- EBT cards will be retained and kept safe. (PA)
- Policies/practices within SNAP offices will be examined to minimize or remove barriers; culture and language barriers will be included. (PA)
- SNAP Outreach workers will develop and maintain strong connections with local SNAP offices and community resource agencies. (PI)
OSU Extension staff conducts outreach activities in the following counties: Benton, Columbia, Linn, Polk and Yamhill, and on the OSU campus.
Read more about SNAP Outreach in Oregon. (from Partners for a Hunger Free Oregon)