Meet Giovanna. She is currently homeless, unemployed, and unable to live with her son. Giovanna applied for CalFresh with our partner, the San Diego Food Bank, while she was at the South Metro Career Center seeking information on employment opportunities. She is looking forward to receiving CalFresh benefits to help her feed her family and save money for other expenses like paying rent until she finds stable employment.
Where did you first hear about CalFresh?
I first heard about CalFresh on television. I saw a commercial.
What perceptions did you have of CalFresh before you applied?
That CalFresh was public help for people who are not able to have a good income.
What made you interested in applying for the program? How long have you received benefits?
I am not employed at the moment. I am worried about the well-being of my son. I want to make sure he at least has good nutrition. The last time I received public benefits I received them for six months. We stopped receiving benefits because I had an income and no longer needed the extra help.
How do you (or how would you) make ends meet without CalFresh?
Right now, I don’t have an income. But, when I do have a job it’s not going to be a steady one. In the meantime, CalFresh will help me save money for other expenses like rent. At least I will have a little bit of money to maintain the fridge.
What are you most proud of in your life? Or what are your dreams for the future?
I am most proud of is my son. He is amazing. He doesn't behave badly. I can say he’s the only thing I’m doing right. My dream for the future is to be reunited with my son and to have a stable job that I can rely on and support us with.
What do you want elected officials to know about food assistance programs like CalFresh?
I would say it’s a great program for people in need. It really helps.
How do you anticipate CalFresh support you during your job search?
It would help me a lot by taking away the stress of providing food for my son. It’s a relief knowing that I will be able to buy food and prepare meals for him.