Los Angeles (August 13, 2018) – The Los Angeles Regional Food Bank today announced a $81,724.14 grant from the Walmart Foundation to help fight hunger across Los Angeles County through Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) education and outreach, known as CalFresh in California. SNAP is the largest federal program dedicated to providing aid to millions of low-income individuals and families in hunger insecure communities. Yet, 17 percent of Americans eligible for SNAP currently do not receive this benefit. Only 42 percent of eligible seniors are enrolled.
With this grant, the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank hopes to scale access to SNAP among eligible households, with particular emphasis on reaching community college students who are at-risk for hunger, as they struggle to pay for tuition and accommodation. Walmart Foundation’s generous grant will help us increase staffing to expand SNAP (CalFresh) Outreach to twelve additional community colleges in Los Angeles County as well as the five that we currently serve. The funding will enable us to help an additional 540 students submit SNAP applications.
“1 in 7 people in Los Angeles County have limited or no access to healthy, nutritious food. At the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank we work tirelessly to help fill this need, but programs like SNAP can boost the supply of nutritious food for students facing hunger, something our community really needs,” said Michael Flood, the Food Bank’s President & CEO.
SNAP provides more than nutrition assistance; it helps improve families’ overall well-being. With lower grocery bills, people are better able to pay for other basic necessities—rent or mortgages, medical expenses, utilities and transportation. According to the USDA’s Economic Research Service Report, SNAP is critical to moving families into long-term food security.
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation provide donations of both food and funds to the Feeding America nationwide network of 200 food banks. Locally, they have been committed partners and generous supporters of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank for over a decade. They donate 1.4 million pounds of food annually and are one of our top five food donors. They further support our work by providing generous grants via Feeding America.