Children are among those most heavily impacted by the lasting effects of the pandemic, as food insecurity among kids has risen by a shocking 75%. As schools, after-school programs, and daycare centers have largely been closed, many children have been left without their most reliable sources of nutritious food.
For this reason, CFBNJ’s main priorities during the pandemic included elevating our child nutrition programs, which include grab-and-go meals, summer food, and Family Packs. We also assisted families in applying for P-EBT, a program available for families whose children qualify for free and reduced school meals.
“I spent an hour on the phone assisting a widow in navigating an online SNAP application that she had started on her own. She received her confirmation number and was delighted that I had spent the afternoon assisting her,” Maria, CFBNJ Resource Access Coordinator, says.
Through the pandemic, CFBNJ has aided more than 3,500 of our community members in applying for SNAP benefits and accessing other critical resources, such as energy assistance.
“It was her first time applying for SNAP benefits, but I know that it is important to make a client feel empowered to take control of their outcome,” Maria says.