CalFresh gives opportunities for students with low incomes

Sonoma State University has teamed with CalFresh to provide students in need with help regarding nutrition, eating, and food budgeting. The CalFresh Outreach day will be happening on Monday Oct. 7, to guide students into the application process, and help them with anything they need in regards to CalFresh. This event will be from 11a.m. to 2p.m., in Schulz 2010 in the library. 

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“CalFresh is just a helping hand to students at Sonoma, it extremely important to incorporate healthy foods into your lifestyle, and CalFresh is giving us students that chance,”  says Kinesiology major Natalie Gomez. 

CalFresh is provided to give students assistance for their everyday food needs. Their job is to help students and the community buy the food they need. This event will have advisors to help guide students through the process of applying, and answer any questions they may have about CalFresh. Students can receive $150 or more in benefits for food expenses, and this event is here for anyone who may need a little extra guidance through the process.

Calfresh is here to help students become the healthiest versions of themselves, and provide them with whatever they need to stay in that healthy lifestyle. This event is put on to help students create that lifestyle, in an easy and casual manner. Students are welcome to come and seek the benefits of CalFresh, or to simply stop by for any questions they may be concerned about. Calfresh wants to encourage students to come and learn about this amazing and helpful organization, stay connected, and gain personal insight for what CalFresh has to offer. 

“It’s awesome to know we have a program that helps us students with nutrition, and people who could benefit should definitely be apart of this event,” says Senior Cerena Clifford. 

As noted on the Sonoma State website, CalFresh is a nutrition assistance program that will help students and families with low incomes meet their daily healthy food intake. CalFresh wants to help as many people incorporate healthy food, like fruits and vegetables into their diet. CalFresh is the name of the USDA-funded Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), for the state of California. 

As also stated online, CalFresh Outreach Program is funded through the California Department of Social Services (CDSS), and is implemented between partnerships with country social services offices. Every CalFresh case is unique, so they have provided advisors to help serve each student’s specific needs. The advisors are guided to assist people through the entire CalFresh application process, which includes: the application itself, obtaining verification documents, navigating the 30-day application period, and learning about the renewal process. Receipts from CalFresh will receive and “spend” CalFresh benefits electronically via personal electronic transfer card just like a debit card. With this, students and recipients from CalFresh use these 

For more assistance, CalFresh Outreach advisors can help students through this process. If a student is unable to attend this event, they can call (707) 664-4248 or email CalFreshOutreach@sonoma.edu. Drop-in hours for assistance are also provided at the Student Center, Lobo’s Pantry, and The HUB. The HUB, located on the second floor of the student center, offers drop in assistance hours on Mondays from 12:30p.m. to 1:30p.m., and on Wednesdays from 3p.m. to 4p.m. For more information about drop in assistance and hours,  please visit the Student Affairs page on the Sonoma State website. 

The Student Affairs page on the Sonoma State website has also provided any resources and food bank information for any student to see what the community has to offer. This includes: F.I.S.H Food Pantry, Feed our Children of Sonoma County, Redwood Empire Food Bank, and Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County. Sonoma State wants to give its students a litany of resources to help out.

“Some people may be confused or concerned about the application process, so this event is a great way to help students get help to find their route for their specific needs,” says Gomez.