Wednesday, January 18, 2017

SEVCA offers help with getting food benefits through 3SquaresVT

In winter, many households living with lower incomes are particularly hard-pressed to meet their food expenses, given the added burden of heating costs. Some cut down on the food they consume or buy cheaper, less-nutritious food as a means to cope with these added expenses.

The good news is that many struggling households can get support for their food costs through 3SquaresVT, and Southeastern Vermont Community Action can help households apply for these benefits.

3SquaresVT is Vermont’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, designed to help households without sufficient resources meet their need for healthy, nutritious food. A family of four earning up to $3,746 a month may be eligible, and households can have a savings account or an asset like a car or home and still qualify.

Whether they are experiencing a short-term financial crisis or longer-term challenges, 3SquaresVT helps seniors, families, and individuals with lower incomes make ends meet. In fact, 1 in 8 Vermonters already receive 3SquaresVT benefits. Monthly benefits come on a debit card accepted at many grocery stores and farmers’ markets, making it easy for households to use them.

SEVCA’s Family Services staff are available by appointment to assist households in applying for 3SquaresVT. For more information, call SEVCA toll-free at 800-464-9951, between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Applicants in northern Windham County may also call that number to schedule an appointment.

Brattleboro-area applicants should call 802-254-2795; Springfield area applicants, (802) 885-6153; and White River Junction area applicants, (802) 295-5215. Eligibility and the amount of assistance provided are based primarily on household income, expenses, and household size.

The program is open to individuals, families with or without children, seniors, and people with disabilities. There are special rules that make it easier for households that include a senior or a person with a disability to receive benefits.

– Originally published in The Commons issue #391 
(Wednesday, January 18, 2017).

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