REPLACEMENT CALFRESH AVAILABLE FOR RESIDENTS AFFECTED BY SAN DIEGO COUNTY WILDFIRES & POWER OUTAGES

Last updated: December 14, 2017

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Replacement CalFresh

Due to the number of residents affected by power outages and wildfires in San Diego County, the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency received a waiver that extends the deadline to request Replacement CalFresh. Residents who lost benefits and live in the impacted zip codes below have until January 4, 2018 to request Replacement CalFresh.

The impacted zip codes include: 91901, 91905, 91906, 91916, 91917, 91931, 91934, 91935, 91948, 91962, 91963, 91980, 92003, 92026, 92027, 92028, 92036, 92054, 92056, 92057, 92058, 92059, 92060, 92061, 92065, 92066, 92069, 92070, 92082, 92083, 92084, and 92086.

Residents requesting replacement CalFresh must complete a CF 303 Form (English  | Spanish) and an Affidavit of Loss form (English | Spanish). These forms must be submitted in person at a County of San Diego HHSA Family Resource Center (find a location here) or the Local Assistance Center at the Vista Branch Library (700 Eucalyptus Avenue). 

Benefits will be restored to the CalFresh EBT card for that individual or household. The maximum replacement benefit individuals can recoup is one full month’s worth of benefits. Replacement Requests will be processed and benefits will be reissued within 10 days of submitting.

Local Assistance Center (LAC) open from December 11 - 16, 2017

The County of San Diego has opened a Local Assistance Center in Vista to help individuals and families affected by the Lilac Fire. County and community-based organizations will be available this week to provide case management, crisis counseling and referral services, tax relief information and records replacement, short-term housing referrals, CalFresh/SNAP resources and information, information on residential rebuilding and permitting and consumer fraud and a mobile medical clinic. For more information, residents can call or visit:

  • Local Assistance Center is located at the Vista branch library at 700 Eucalyptus Avenue and will be open from 9am- 6pm. the site will remain open until Saturday, December 16th. 
  • Residents who live in the unincorporated part of San Diego County may call the Recovery Assistance Hotline at 858.495.5200 or email CountyFireRecovery@sdcounty.ca.gov.

Congratulations to our 2017 CalFresh Award Winners

The collaborative power of the CalFresh Task Force is fueled by the passion and innovation of its members.  The annual CalFresh Task Force Awards honor individuals and organizations making major strides toward ending hunger in San Diego County. Awardees are nominated and voted for by Task Force members.

CalFresh Outreach Partner of the Year – Legal Aid Society of San Diego

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Laura Zuniga-Huizar of Legal Aid Society of San Diego with the CalFresh Outreach Partner of the Year award. Laura accepted the award on behalf of her colleague Tila Nunn-Miller.

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Laura Zuniga-Huizar of Legal Aid Society of San Diego with the CalFresh Outreach Partner of the Year award. Laura accepted the award on behalf of her colleague Tila Nunn-Miller.

Tila Nunn-Miller of Legal Aid Society of San Diego is a phenomenal advocate for individuals who encounter difficulties navigating the CalFresh process. Through her work, Tila ensures all parties understand the process, rules, and regulations that govern CalFresh benefits. Tila is a social justice champion who prides herself on assisting others and gives her all to assist anyone with CalFresh, CalWORKS, General Relief, and CAPI questions. While Tila was unable to attend the end of the year CalFresh Task Force meeting where the awards were presented, her colleague Laura Zuniga-Huizar (pictured above) accepted the award on her behalf.

CalFresh County Liaison of the Year – Michael and Patrick Schmidt, Program Specialists

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Patrick Schmidt with the CalFresh County Liaison of the Year award. Patrick also accepted the award on behalf of Michael Schmidt who was unable to attend the CalFresh end of year meeting.

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Patrick Schmidt with the CalFresh County Liaison of the Year award. Patrick also accepted the award on behalf of Michael Schmidt who was unable to attend the CalFresh end of year meeting.

Michael and Patrick Schmidt support community-based organizations’ work to ensure eligible residents are awarded CalFresh benefits through their work managing the County of San Diego HHSA’s new case issue escalation email. Created in conjunction with the San Diego Hunger Coalition, the HHSA escalation email allows community organizations to elevate challenging cases to a team of experts for additional investigation and support. Michael and Patrick’s team provides quick and thorough customer service which allows for a prompt resolution to any case issues partners may experience. Community partners reported, “clients have provided great feedback from their interactions working with both Michael and Patrick and expressed feeling like their concerns are properly addressed.” Michael was unable to attend the end of year CalFresh Task Force meeting, Patrick (pictured above) accepted the award on both of their behalves.

CalFresh Outreach Partner & County Collaboration – La Maestra Community Health Centers, Health Coverage Access, and EOPS Department at Southwestern College

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Daniela Cervantes of La Maestra Community Health Centers and Monica Moreno of Health Coverage Access with the CalFresh Outreach Partner and County Collaboration award. 

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Daniela Cervantes of La Maestra Community Health Centers and Monica Moreno of Health Coverage Access with the CalFresh Outreach Partner and County Collaboration award. 

Starting in the fall of 2016, La Maestra Community Health Centers began working with the Southwestern College’s Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) Department and Health Coverage Access (HCA) to provide same-day-service CalFresh application assistance on campus. La Maestra reported, “this new partnership has made it easier to connect likely eligible students participating in EOPS with CalFresh benefits by providing onsite support and simplifying the application process.” The Hunger Coalition is happy to have facilitated this partnership, resulting in ongoing efforts to connect eligible students to benefits, including seven same-day-service events on campus last academic year.

CalFresh Outreach Partner & Community Collaboration – Feeding San Diego and the EOPS Department at San Diego City College

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Rachel Oporto of Feeding San Diego and Salem Berhanu and Mercedes Tiggs of San Diego City College with the CalFresh award for Outreach Partner and Community Collaboration.

San Diego Hunger Coalition Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz Brochu presents Rachel Oporto of Feeding San Diego and Salem Berhanu and Mercedes Tiggs of San Diego City College with the CalFresh award for Outreach Partner and Community Collaboration.

After meeting at a CalFresh Task Force meeting, San Diego City College’s Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) Department and Feeding San Diego partnered to provide CalFresh application assistance on campus, and are going strong! The EOPS team has worked diligently to make it easier for students to successfully access benefits, collaborating with their financial aid department to help students successfully obtain necessary forms, and always keeping an open door for students to come ask questions about their case. Currently, Feeding San Diego is onsite on a monthly basis and is working with the EOPS team to partner with the Disability Support Programs and Services department and Mental Health department to further expand CalFresh outreach.

Hunger Free Kids Convening Brings Together Experts in Child Nutrition, Hunger Relief, and Policy Solutions

Attendees, presenters, and panelists gather at the Hunger Free Kids convening on November 1, 2017 at Leichtag Commons.

Attendees, presenters, and panelists gather at the Hunger Free Kids convening on November 1, 2017 at Leichtag Commons.

Many afterschool programs serve a snack to keep children focused and engaged in active learning and play. Yet for many children, a snack is simply not enough. Afterschool “supper” is a meal like lunch that can help ensure all children don’t go to bed hungry. However, San Diego Hunger Coalition’s analysis found that only 9% of students enrolled in the Free and Reduced Price Meal program at school are participating in afterschool programs that serve supper. This is one opportunity to feed more children and youth without raising money to spend on food.

Opportunities for schools and youth-serving community-based organizations to expand their meal programs like afterschool suppers and tap into federal funds to support more robust programs are at the heart of the San Diego Hunger Coalition’s soon-to-be released report - Hunger Free Kids: Opportunities by District to End Child Hunger. The Hunger Coalition partnered with Alliance Healthcare Foundation as part of its iEngageU series to bring together experts in child nutrition, hunger relief, and policy solutions along with parents and other advocates for a convening on November 1st at Leichtag Commons, to preview of the report’s findings.

Presenters at the convening included keynote speaker Kathy Saile, California Director of No Kid Hungry, as well as:

The week following the Hunger Free Kids convening, our Executive Director Anahid Brakke, Research Director Heidi Gjertsen, Ph.D., and Hunger Free Kids Program Director Robin McNulty represented San Diego at the Alliance to End Hunger's 2017 national Sunshine Summit to End Hunger where they presented on the report's findings and how to start a hunger free initiative in other communities.

The full report will be released at the end of January. Sign-up to receive a link to where you can download a copy of the report when it is available. The report methodology and data on the school districts presented at the November 1st convening is available on our Hunger Free Kids Report webpage

The Hunger Advocacy Network's 2017 State Policy Priorities Pass!

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Each year, the Hunger Advocacy Network (HAN), facilitated by the San Diego Hunger Coalition, selects State hunger relief policies to prioritize for its lobbying efforts. This year, HAN was aided by a new wave of support from its grassroots Hunger Free Activist network. These everyday activists and partners receive periodic opportunities to use their voice, when it matters most, to support key pieces of legislation that will protect and expand programs like CalFresh/SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) and School Meals. The Hunger Free Activists’ tweets, posts, calls, emails and letters over the past year worked! All of HAN’s state priority policies either passed or were included in the 2017-2018 state budget.

2017 State Priority Policy Initiatives

SB 138 (McGuire) - Feed the Kids: This law increases access to free and reduced-price school meals by implementing Medi-Cal Direct Certification statewide and calls upon very high poverty schools to offer free school meals to all students.
Signed by Governor Jerry Brown - October 12, 2017

AB 1219 (Eggman) – Good Samaritan Food Donation Act: This law clarifies and expands existing liability protections for food donors to reduce waste and increases resources for San Diegans struggling with food insecurity. 
Signed by Governor Jerry Brown - October 9, 2017

AB 607 (Gloria) - Community Resiliency & Disaster Preparedness Act of 2017: This law protects against increased hunger and hardship of low-income families during a disaster by requiring the CalFresh program to maximize replacement benefit options during a disaster or power-outage and provide additional budget resources to be triggered in the case of a disaster declared by the Governor to improve the success of a federal request for disaster anti-hunger assistance and administration of the aid.
Signed by Governor Jerry Brown - October 5, 2017

AB 214 (Weber) – College Hunger: This law addresses college student hunger by defining terms used in the CalFresh program to determine eligibility and clarifies the law concerning CalFresh Restaurant Meal Program on college campuses.
Signed by Governor Jerry Brown - July 24, 2017

AB 164 (Arambula) – California Leads to Meet Food Needs: This funding will establish a new state-funded anti-hunger CalFresh benefit to be issued under prescribed circumstances, such as drought, disaster, or in the case of federal SNAP ineligibility, and to be issued using the EBT system.
The 2017-2018 Budget includes one-time funding of $5 million for a CalFresh Unsafe Drinking Water Benefit Pilot program. This program will provide benefits to residents served by public water systems that fail to meet safe drinking water standards. 

What’s Next?

Both the Senate and the House of Representatives have passed versions of a FY 2018 Budget Resolution that expedites tax cuts for the wealthy, at the expense of programs that support low and middle-income people. This includes threats to cut SNAP (known as CalFresh in California). In the coming months, Congress will be writing the budget legislation that they will vote on. As details become available, we will be back in touch to ask you to contact members of Congress and ask them to protect important federal programs that provide food assistance to members of our community. 

San Diego Hunger Coalition Facilitates Panel on Hunger and Healthcare for Be There San Diego

Experts in healthcare and hunger participate in Be There San Diego’s University of Best Practices series. 

Experts in healthcare and hunger participate in Be There San Diego’s University of Best Practices series. 

Our Senior Director of CalFresh and Advocacy, Amanda Schultz-Brochu, recently organized and moderated an eye-opening panel on screening for food insecurity at healthcare settings hosted by Be There San Diego as part of their University of Best Practices series. Amanda engaged experts in healthcare about their work related to food insecurity, the innovative programs they have launched to address this issue, and the impact their work has had on their patient’s health. The Hunger Coalition’s Rx for CalFresh report has served as a catalyst for screening for food insecurity at healthcare settings.

Click here to read more about this important discussion from Be There San Diego. 

Donor/Volunteer Spotlight – Melody Padilla

Meet Melody Padilla. Melody cares about ending hunger and decided to do her part by becoming a donor and volunteer of San Diego Hunger Coalition. We're grateful for her support!

San Diego Hunger Coalition donor and volunteer Melody Padilla. Photo courtesy of Jax Connolly Photography.

San Diego Hunger Coalition donor and volunteer Melody Padilla. Photo courtesy of Jax Connolly Photography.

How long have you lived in San Diego? 

I have lived in San Diego almost all of my life! I was born at University Hospital in Hillcrest and grew up in Oak Park, just a few miles east of Downtown San Diego. I went to Horton Elementary, Memorial Academy, and Morse High School. I went away to college and for several years afterward in my early-to-mid-twenties, but I've been back since late 2003 and have since lived in City Heights, Oceanside, and Encinitas.

What is your profession or occupation?

I have a financial education and services office in Carlsbad with two business partners. We offer free classes on all sorts of topics, from getting out of debt to saving for college and planning for retirement. Our passion is to share the strategies that the "one percent" have with everyone else. 

 How did you first hear about the San Diego Hunger Coalition?

I first heard about the San Diego Hunger Coalition when Anahid Brakke became the Executive Director there. She had hired me in her previous position as Director of Self Sufficiency at the Leichtag Foundation.

 Why do you donate to and volunteer with the San Diego Hunger Coalition?

I am inspired to donate to and volunteer with the San Diego Hunger Coalition because I believe so strongly in Anahid Brakke's leadership and the amazing team she has brought together, so I am confident that my efforts and contributions will actually make a difference in my neighbors' lives. I know that the Hunger Coalition is truly moving the needle on hunger in San Diego County, and I am excited to be part of this great work!

Why do you care about ending hunger in San Diego County?

I care about ending hunger in San Diego County in part because I have lived on humble wages as a single mom with three children, and I know how hard it can be to eat enough nutritious food and meet all of my other responsibilities at the same time. I know what it's like to need some help, and I'm so grateful that there were people and organizations in my life there to help me when I needed it.

 

Hunger Awareness Month 2017 was better than ever thanks to great partnerships and community support.

San Diego Hunger Coalition Executive Director Anahid Brakke addresses guests at the 2017 Hunger Free Fest

San Diego Hunger Coalition Executive Director Anahid Brakke addresses guests at the 2017 Hunger Free Fest

Each September, the San Diego Hunger Coalition takes part in Hunger Awareness Month to spread the word and raise money to fight hunger in our community. This year, our Hunger Awareness month efforts were bigger and better than ever thanks to great partnerships and community support. Throughout the month we partnered with different businesses to raise money to support our work. We also partnered with the member organizations of our Hunger Advocacy Network to make a greater impact spreading the word and advocating for hunger relief policies. Additionally, we held several opportunities for supporters to come together and have fun for a good cause.

On Saturday, September 16 we partnered with Ashley Lane Fitness to work out to fight hunger. Attendees got a heart-pumping 60-minute workout and were treated to refreshments and a raffle afterward.

Participants in the San Diego Hunger Coalition’s Work out to Fight Hunger at Ashley Lane Fitness pose to show their support after their workout.

Participants in the San Diego Hunger Coalition’s Work out to Fight Hunger at Ashley Lane Fitness pose to show their support after their workout.

On Thursday, September 21st we partnered with Panera Bread in Liberty Station and on September 28th we partnered with Chipotle in Mission Valley to eat out to fight hunger. Customers who dined out at these locations between 5 – 7 pm and showed the Hunger Coalition’s fundraising flier had a portion of their proceeds donated to our organization.

Our work culminated with our Hunger Free Fest on September 23rd at SMARTS Farm in the East Village. This family-friendly event brought together partners, donors, and other supporters for an afternoon of fun, gourmet food, and drinks in a beautiful setting. Guests enjoyed delicious hor d'oeuvres prepared by Chef Christopher Gardner of Volunteers for America Southwest and Chef Alex Caballo of Alpha Pizzeria and sipped on craft beer donate by 10 Barrel Brewing Company while playing yard games and bidding for the chance to win great raffle and silent auction prizes. Hunger Free Fest was a success thanks to a generous anonymous donation and sponsorships from Sharp Healthcare, Scripps Health, and the Smart & Final Charitable Foundation. From these contributions and proceeds from the event ticket sales, silent auction, and raffle we raised nearly $14,000 to advocate for state and federal hunger relief polices that help connect San Diegans in need to food assistance programs including CalFresh (also known as SNAP or food stamps) and school meals. Photos from the event can be viewed in an album on our Facebook Page.

Thank you to everyone who supported Hunger Awareness Month 2017!

#MythbusterMonday - November 2017 Myths Busted

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We begin each week using our online voice to debunk myths about hunger. Our #MythbusterMonday social media series dispels misinformation and stigma commonly associated with food assistance programs like CalFresh/SNAP and school meals and the people who rely on them to help put food on the table.  

What hunger myths have you heard? Join us in sharing the truth about hunger each Monday using the hashtag #MythbusterMonday.

In November, we busted the following hunger myths:

November 6

The first Monday of the month we take a look back at the myths busted the previous month. Check out the myths we busted in October 2017. Click here. 

November 13

#MythbusterMonday "I don't know anyone suffering from food insecurity." False! In San Diego County 1 in 6 people don't have enough to eat for an active, healthy life. A staggering 1 in 5 are children. It is likely that we all know someone who may not know where their next meal is coming from. Visit our Hunger in San Diego webpage to learn more. 

November 20

#MythbusterMonday "It’s better for local charities to feed people, not the government." False! Food banks, food pantries, and soup kitchens were not designed to do this. Instead, they were created to solve temporary or emergency situations, not systemic problems. Click here and see Myth 2 from MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger

November 27

#MythbusterMonday "Breakfast in the Classroom places an unnecessary burden on teachers." False! Two out of three educators whose students eat breakfast in the classroom are fans of the program. Teachers find that with clear procedures, breakfast can take less than 15 minutes, has a calming effect and sets a positive learning atmosphere. Click here to read more 'Breakfast in the Classroom' myths from No Kid Hungry

Why 1 in 6 People in San Diego County Don't Have Enough to Eat

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A family walks up to the cashier at the grocery store, takes out their wallet to purchase food, and doesn’t have enough to pay for the items on the checkout belt. How did they get here?

It is easy to conclude that this family made poor individual choices and decisions. Perhaps they didn’t budget their money wisely that month. Perhaps they haven’t put in the effort to find a higher-paying job. Perhaps they rely on CalFresh/SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) and already used up all their monthly benefits.

The reality of food insecurity in San Diego – and across the nation – is far more complex than individual choice and isolated moments at the checkout line.

Living Wage Jobs

Unless a person sustains themselves entirely on food they grow themselves – something that has become increasingly rare in the United States – they need a source of income. Finding and securing a living wage job is not a simple feat. One needs training, education, work experience, and connections to gain employment.  

In San Diego County, a staggeringly high cost of living and high competition for a limited number of living wage jobs intensifies the challenge. If a San Diegan does not have a basic adult education and lacks work experience, it may take anywhere from three to five to as many as ten years to overcome this barrier. While a person pursues career training or education, they must survive with a limited income. When faced with costs related to career and education, food often becomes a “flexible expense.” One group this often applies to is college students. In 2016, nearly 20% of University of California students reported experiencing very low food security. Facing the rising costs of books, supplies, and tuition, students may skip meals to pay for their education.              

Cost of Food, Time, and Transportation

Food prices (and the relative prices of other necessary goods) impacts whether people experience food insecurity. In San Diego County, the average cost of a meal is $3.23, higher than the national average of $2.94. Further, to shop for and cook food at home requires time, food literacy, and cooking skills. This means that more afforable (and less healthy) prepared food is often the only viable option.  

 Lastly, a person may struggle to make it to the checkout line at all. For residents who live in a “food desert,” the nearest grocery store may be far enough away to necessitate a car ride. The cost of owning, maintaining, and fueling a car can add up. In car-dependent San Diego County, the weight of these costs is particularly heavy.

Policies

Federal food assistance programs act as vital safety nets for those experiencing financial hardship. However, these programs are not always available to those who need them. The Federal Poverty Level – the metric that determines eligibility for these programs – is an outdated measure that only captures extreme deprivation.

For example, to be eligible to receive CalFresh benefits, a person must have a household gross monthly income below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. The 2017 Federal Poverty Level threshold for a family of four is $24,600, so 200% of that level is $49,200. In San Diego County, however, a family of four may need as much as 300‐365% of the Federal Poverty Level (or $73,800 - $89,790) to meet their most basic needs, especially if their children are not yet in school and require childcare.

Further, the structure of federal food assistance is such that as a person gradually rises in income level, attaining more skills and training, they experience sharp cuts in benefits. This “benefits cliff” traps people between ineligible for benefits but not making enough to make ends meet. Lastly, many of those who are eligible for federal food assistance do not receive benefits because of complex eligibility guidelines, excessive paperwork, or lack of awareness.

Household and Individual Characteristics

Many factors outside of individual choice affect whether a person has enough food for an active, healthy life. A person's mental and physical health status may serve as a barrier to food access. This often includes veterans, the elderly, and those living with disabilities, among others. For example, in San Diego County, 49.1% of food insecure adults are disabled. Whether a person has a partner or spouse to supplement income can influence their ability to access food. For example, in San Diego County, 64.6% of low-income single parent households are food insecure.

Persistent Historical Inequality

Perhaps the most enduring root cause of food insecurity in the United States is racial, ethnic, and class-based inequities that span generations. Inequity has been deeply entrenched in policies and practices throughout our history. This inequity has created a divide in the accumulation of wealth (savings, home, or business equity) that historically advantages some populations, while disadvantaging others. Low-income people, people of color, women, single mothers, people with disabilities, etc. are more likely to experience food insecurity because of intergenerational inequality.

For example, over the past 30 years, the average wealth of white families has grown by 84% —1.2 times the rate of growth for the Latino/a population and 3 times the rate of growth for the African American population. This mirrors the reality of food insecurity in San Diego County, where food insecure adults are disproportionately Latino/a. 52.7% of food insecure adults are Latino/a, versus 26.3% that are White.

The Reality of Food Insecurity

In sum, food insecurity is the result of a complex relationship between the ability to acquire and maintain a living wage job, the cost of food, time, and transportation, food assistance policies, and enduring historical inequalities. When we see food insecurity with this lens – not a result of poor individual choices, but a result of a complex array of environmental, social, and historical factors – we are better able to make strides in ensuring that all San Diegans have enough food.

- Authored by Rosa Rada, 2017 Emerson Hunger Fellow

 

#MythbusterMonday - October 2017 Myths Busted

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We begin each week using our online voice to debunk myths about hunger. Our #MythbusterMonday social media series dispels misinformation and stigma commonly associated with food assistance programs like CalFresh/SNAP and school meals and the people who rely on them to help put food on the table.  

What hunger myths have you heard? Join us in sharing the truth about hunger each Monday using the hashtag #MythbusterMonday.

In October we busted the following hunger myths:

October 2
The first Monday of the month we take a look back at the myths busted the previous month. Check out the myths we busted in September 2017 here.

October 9
#MythbusterMonday “People on food stamps are just lazy.” False! The majority of SNAP (formerly know as food stamps) recipients (75% nationally) who can work, do so. Those who are employed, often at multiple jobs, can’t always earn enough to cover their costs and afford the nutrition necessary for themselves and their family. Click to learn more from MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger.

 October 16
#MythbusterMonday “SNAP fraud is common.” False! "SNAP fraud rates are extremely low. Every year, states thoroughly evaluate a sample of their SNAP accounts to determine rates of fraud and errors; they also investigate trafficking (selling benefit cards for cash). And it turns out, less than 1% of SNAP benefits go to people who should have been considered ineligible." Click here to learn more.

October 23
#MythbusterMonday “All poor people get food stamps.” False! The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that 1/4 of eligible people don’t sign up. Many people don’t know they are eligible for federal nutrition assistance. Others don’t sign up because they have trouble navigating the system or fear being stigmatized.

October 30
#MythbusterMonday “You have to be a U.S. citizen to get CalFresh.” False! Some eligible legal immigrants may qualify for CalFresh. Ask your local CalFresh Office. Click here to find a location.


Follow the San Diego Hunger Coalition on Facebook,  Twitter, and Instagram


#MythbusterMonday - September 2017 Myths Busted

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We begin each week using our online voice to debunk myths about hunger. Our #MythbusterMonday social media series dispels misinformation and stigma commonly associated with food assistance programs like CalFresh/SNAP and school meals and the people who rely on them to help put food on the table.  

What hunger myths have you heard? Join us in sharing the truth about hunger each Monday using the hashtag #MythbusterMonday.

In September we busted the following hunger myths:

September 4

The first Monday of the month we take a look back at the myths busted the previous month. Check out the myths we busted in August 2017 here.

September 11

#MythbusterMonday “There are no hungry kids in my community.” False! Hunger exists in every community. Nationally, 1 in 6 youth are food insecure. In San Diego County, its 1 in 5. Click here to learn more myths about child hunger programs. 

September 18

#MythbusterMonday “Seniors aren’t going hungry in San Diego County” False! 42% of all seniors age 65+ in San Diego County do not have enough income to meet their most basic needs, as measured by the Elder Index. Click here to learn more.

September 25

#MythbusterMonday "Being hungry is just part of the college experience." False! Hunger on campus is a real problem. 32% of food insecure students believed that hunger or housing problems had an impact on their education including causing them to miss a class, drop a class or have poor academic performance. Click here to learn more.


Follow the San Diego Hunger Coalition on Facebook,  Twitter, and Instagram


#MythbusterMonday - August 2017 Myths Busted

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We begin each week using our online voice to debunk myths about hunger. Our #MythbusterMonday social media series dispels misinformation and stigma commonly associated with food assistance programs like CalFresh/SNAP and school meals and the people who rely on them to help put food on the table.  

What hunger myths have you heard? Join us in sharing the truth about hunger each Monday using the hashtag #MythbusterMonday.

In August we busted the following hunger myths:

August 7

The first Monday of the month we take a look back at the myths busted the previous month. Check out the myths we busted in July 2017 here

August 14

#MythbusterMonday Our latest food insecurity data for San Diego County is out! Nearly 1 in 6 people in our region don’t have enough food for an active healthy life. Does this data debunk any #hunger myths you’ve heard? Which ones? Click here to view the latest food insecurity data for San Diego County. 

August 21

#MythbusterMonday “Schools serve junk food for school lunch.” False! Meals served as part of the National School Lunch Program must meet nutrition guidelines based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. School meals must comply with requirements like age-appropriate calorie ranges and sodium limits and must provide less than 10% of calories from saturated fat and contain zero grams trans-fat. Click here and see Myth #3 to learn more from the Poway Unified School District

August 28

#MythbusterMonday “Too many ineligible children are receiving school meals on my tax dollar.” False! There is no evidence that many in-eligible children are receiving free or discounted school meals. In fact, studies suggest that the number of Americans eligible for supplemental food assistance programs like school meals is dramatically underestimated and that these programs are underutilized. 


Follow the San Diego Hunger Coalition on Facebook,  Twitter, and Instagram


September is Hunger Awareness Month - Ways to Support the San Diego Hunger Coalition

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Nearly 1 in 6 people in San Diego County don't always have enough to eat. September is Hunger Awareness Month. Together with our partners, we are spreading the word and raising money to fight hunger in our community. Listed below are events where you can support the San Diego Hunger Coalition's work and get more involved.


San Diego Hunger Coalition's Hunger Free Fest
Saturday, September 23
2 - 5 PM
SMARTS Farm (1326 Broadway, San Diego, CA 92101)
Tickets: $40 in advance / $50 at the door
BUY TICKETS HERE
This family-friendly event will offer delicious hors d'oeuvres created by renowned local chefs, refreshments, live music, a children's gardening activity by SMARTS Farm, and the opportunity to win fabulous raffle and silent auction items. Your ticket purchase includes entertainment, hors d'oeuvres and your first drink. All proceeds will go to support the San Diego Hunger Coalition's work to connect eligible people in need to food assistance programs. Join us to have fun for a good cause! 


Work out to fight hunger at Ashley Lane Fitness

Sculpt Class (60 minutes) - $20/per person
Followed by refreshments and a raffle!
Saturday, September 16, 12 - 1:30 PM
1450 University Ave. #201 & 202, San Diego, CA 92103
REGISTER HERE (CLASS LISTED UNDER SEPTEMBER 16)
This class will guide you through a workout with dumbbells, kettlebells, resistance bands, and bosu balls. Ashley Lane Fitness guarantees that each class will be unique and fun! All proceeds from this class will go to support the San Diego Hunger Coalition.  

Hunger Advocacy Network Legislative Briefing on Hunger & Healthcare

Tuesday, September 19, 9 - 11 AM
City Heights Center (Price Charities Building)
4305 University Ave., Meeting Room 640 (6th floor), San Diego, CA 92105
RSVP for this free event by emailing Diane@sdhunger.org
Join the Hunger Advocacy Network for a panel discussion on the intersection of healthcare and hunger. Hear from medical professionals and anti-hunger advocates as they brief San Diego County's state representatives on why strengthening food security is important and what they can do to help. 

Eat out to fight hunger at Panera Bread & Chipotle

Panera Bread - Point Loma (Liberty Station)
Thursday, September 21, 4 - 8 PM
2445 Truxtun Rd., San Diego, CA 92106
Panera will donate a percentage of the proceeds from your order to the San Diego Hunger Coalition when you present our fundraising flier.
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FLIER

Chipotle - Mission Valley (Westfield Shopping Center)
Thursday, September 28, 4-8 PM
1025 Camino De La Reina, Suite 2, San Diego, CA 92108
Chipotle will donate a 50% of the proceeds from your order to the San Diego Hunger Coalition when our fundraising flier is presented. 
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FLIER

Hunger Awareness Month 2017 - Eat Out to Fight Hunger at Chipotle on September 28

September is Hunger Awareness Month and this year the San Diego Hunger Coalition is teaming up with Chipotle to raise money to connect San Diegans in need to vital food assistance resources. On Thursday, September 28 between 4 - 8 pm visit the Chipotle in Mission Valley (Westfield Shopping Center) at 1025 Camino De La Reina, Suite 2, San Diego, CA 92108 and present this flier. Chipotle will donate 50% of the sales from our supporters who show this flier to benefit the San Diego Hunger Coalition. Eat for change! 

Hunger Awareness Month 2017 - Eat out to Fight Hunger at Panera Bread on September 21

September is Hunger Awareness Month and this year the San Diego Hunger Coalition is teaming up with Panera Bread to raise money to connect San Diegans in need to vital food assistance resources. On Thursday, September 21 between 4 - 8 pm visit the Panera Bread in Point Loma (Liberty Station) at 2445 Truxtun Rd., San Diego, CA 92106 and present this flier. Panera will donate a percentage of the sales from our supporters who show this flier to benefit the San Diego Hunger Coalition. Eat bread to raise dough for a good cause! 

#MythbusterMonday - July 2017 Myths Busted

We begin each week using our online voice to debunk myths about hunger. Our #MythbusterMonday social media series dispels misinformation and stigma commonly associated with food assistance programs like CalFresh/SNAP and school meals and the people who rely on them to help put food on the table.  

What hunger myths have you heard? Join us in sharing the truth about hunger each Monday using the hashtag #MythbusterMonday.

In July we busted the following hunger myths:

July 3

The first Monday of the month we take a look back at the myths busted the previous month. Check out the myths we busted in June 2017 here

July 10

#MythbusterMonday “Children of families already receiving SNAP benefits can’t qualify for free summer meals.” False! Free summer meals are open to any youth under the age of 18, no matter what other assistance they may be receiving.

July 17

#MythbusterMonday “People on SNAP eat more junk food than anyone else.” False! According to a U.S. Department of Agriculture report less healthy items like soda are one of the top purchases by both SNAP and non-SNAP households. “There were no major differences in the expenditure patterns of SNAP and non-SNAP households, no matter how the data were categorized.”

July 24

#MythbusterMonday “SNAP is a drain on taxpayers.” False! Approximately every $1 spent in SNAP benefits generates $1.73 in economic activity. SNAP is one of the most effective economic stimulus available. Click here and see #3 to learn more. 

July 31

#MythbusterMonday “Summer meal sites are only for young children.” False! All summer meal sites are open & free to EVERYONE under age 18. Teens face the same risks of food insecurity in the summer as young children. 


Follow the San Diego Hunger Coalition on Facebook,  Twitter, and Instagram

#MythbusterMonday - June 2017 Myths Busted

We begin each week using our online voice to debunk myths about hunger. Our #MythbusterMonday social media series dispels misinformation and stigma commonly associated with food assistance programs like CalFresh/SNAP and school meals and the people who rely on them to help put food on the table.  

What hunger myths have you heard? Join us in sharing the truth about hunger each Monday using the hashtag #MythbusterMonday.

In June we busted the following hunger myths:

June 5

The first Monday of the month we take a look back at the myths busted the previous month. Check out the myths we busted in May 2017 here

June 12

#MythbusterMonday “There are no hungry kids in my community.” False! Hunger exists in every community. Nationally, 1 in 6 youth are food insecure. In San Diego County it is 1 in 5. Click here to learn more myths about child hunger programs. 

June 19

#MythbusterMonday “Charities should feed people, not the government.” False! While charitable organizations like food banks, pantries and soup kitchens are on the front lines of fighting hunger they aren’t designed to feed entire communities. They were created to solve temporary emergency situations, not systematic problems. Click here and see #2 to learn more.  

June 26

#MythbusterMonday “Children must sign-up to receive free summer meals.” False! Summer meal sites are open sites which means they are open to the community and do not require that children sign up in advance or even ‘check-in’ at the site. Click here and see #2 under the "For Families" section to learn more. To find a free summer meal site near you text ‘FOOD’ or ‘COMIDA’ to 877-877 or call 2-1-1.


Follow the San Diego Hunger Coalition on Facebook and Twitter


HAN Lobbies for Anti-Hunger Policies in Sacramento while Hunger Free Activists Advocate from Home as Part of Digital Lobby Day

Members of the Hunger Advocacy Network between meetings with San Diego representatives at the State Capitol.

Members of the Hunger Advocacy Network between meetings with San Diego representatives at the State Capitol.

Members of the Hunger Advocacy Network (HAN) led by our Director of Policy and Advocacy Diane Wilkinson descended on the state capitol on May 17 to support anti-hunger policies that impact families struggling to put food on the table in San Diego County. Joining Diane was Ashley Harrington, Manager of Public Affairs and Young Adult Initiatives at Jewish Family Service of San Diego, Kelcey Ellis, Director of Programs at Feeding San Diego, Gabriela Arias, Resident Services Coordinator at Housing on Merit, and Nina Ghatan, Coordinator of the San Diego County Childhood Obesity Initiative at Community Health Improvement Partners. They shared their expertise with San Diego's representatives to demonstrate our region's problem with food insecurity and the positive impact anti-hunger legislation would have on hundreds of thousands of low-income San Diegans.

This year, HAN offered an innovative way for constituents who couldn’t travel to Sacramento to use their online voice to support statewide anti-hunger policies. HAN's Digital Lobby Day was the initial advocacy effort of the group’s Hunger Free Activist grassroots network. Leading up to Digital Lobby Day, Activists were sent information on how to contact their representative on social media as well as templates and memes to help create posts and tweets in support of HAN's priority state policies. The online support generated during Digital Lobby Day helped amplify and strengthen the presence of San Diego’s anti-hunger community.

While in Sacramento, HAN members met with Assemblymember Rocky Chavez and with the staffs of Senator Toni Atkins, Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez-Fletcher, Senator Ben Hueso, Assemblymember Brian Maienschein, Assemblymember Marie Waldron, and Assemblymember Shirley Weber. HAN’s discussions with representatives focused on the San Diego Hunger Coalition's latest food insecurity data and gaining support for the Network’s 2017 state priority policy initiatives:

  • SB 138 (McGuire) - Feed the Kids:  This legislation would automatically enroll low-income children on Medi-Cal in free school meals and calls upon very high poverty schools to offer free school meals to all students.
     
  • AB 214 (Weber) – College Hunger:  This legislation would address college student hunger by defining terms used in the CalFresh program to determine eligibility and clarifying the law concerning CalFresh Restaurant Meal Program on college campuses.
     
  • AB 1219 (Eggman) – Good Samaritan Food Donation Act:  This legislation clarifies and expands existing liability protections for organizations that provide, receive and distribute donated food to reduce waste and increase resources to feed more struggling San Diegans.
     
  • AB 164 (Arambula) – California Leads to Meet Food Needs:  This legislation would establish a new state funded anti-hunger CalFresh benefit to be issued using the EBT system during disasters such as drought and in the case of federal SNAP ineligibility.
     
  • AB 607 (Gloria) - Community Resiliency & Disaster Preparedness Act of 2017:  This legislation would protect against increased hunger and hardship among low-income families by requiring the CalFresh program to maximize replacement benefit options during a disaster or power-outage and provide additional budget in the case of a disaster declared by the Governor to improve the success of a federal request for disaster anti-hunger aid.

The following week on May 24, Diane was back in Sacramento representing HAN alongside more than 200 anti-hunger advocates from cities and communities across California as part of Hunger Action Day. This time she met with the staffs of Senator Joel Anderson and Assemblyman Randy Voepel.

As the food security safety net continues to come under threat at the federal level, it is more important than ever to strengthen our state’s support for policies and programs that help San Diegans have enough food for a healthy active life. Learn more and sign up to be a Hunger Free Activist here. By doing so you'll receive periodic opportunities to use your voice to advocate for anti-hunger legislation so you can tailor your level of engagement.