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COVID-19 FOOD Resources

For Massachusetts residents

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COVID-19 Resources

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Here is a list of food resources for anyone in Massachusetts seeking assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Please note that this is not a comprehensive list of all available programs and that information is subject to change as information is continuously changing. 

 

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FoodSource Hotline

 

For anyone in Massachusetts who needs food assistance, start by calling the FoodSource Hotline. 

Here is your one-stop-shop to learn about all the resources available to help you. 

Project Bread's FoodSource Hotline is  toll-free and confidential, at 1-800-645-8333.

Hotline Hours: Monday-Friday: 8am - 7pm. Saturday: 10am - 2pm.

Our counselors can assist callers with SNAP (information, eligibility screening, and over-the-phone application assistance), finding free meals for kids and school meal sites, summer meal sites, P-EBT, local food pantries and meal programs, and more. 

Our counselors can assist callers in 180 languages. 

Financial Assistance for groceries

SNAP

 

SNAP stands for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. A federal nutrition program (formerly known as food stamps) that provides monthly financial assistance to purchase groceries to Massachusetts residents who qualify.

Once enrolled, you will receive a monthly cash benefit on an EBT card that can be used just like a debit card for food shopping.

Here's what makes SNAP so special and unlike any other food assistance program in the country:

  1. Getting SNAP doesn’t take anything away from anyone else, it’s a resource that helps everyone buy the food they need. 
  2. SNAP gives you the freedom to shop for your own food — food that you like, that meets your dietary needs, allergy restrictions, and cultural preferences! 
  3. You can use SNAP to buy food at most places groceries are sold — grocery stores, convenience stores, gas stations, pharmacies....even some farmer's markets and co-op programs. 
  4. All of the children in your household who attend school will automatically qualify for free school meals.
  5. SNAP recipients are also automatically enrolled in HIP—The Healthy Incentives Program! HIP helps you buy more fruits and vegetables at approved HIP vendors which include farmer's markets, farm stands, mobile markets, and community supported agriculture (CSA) farm share programs. 
  6. Children in your household ages 0-5 will get Pandemic EBT benefits, an additional monthy financial benefit for food. 

If you have lost your job or work hours because of COVID-19, you can apply for SNAP at any time. You do not have to wait to file an application and should learn if you are eligible. 

Right now, everyone is receiving the maximum household benefit amount, everyone's benefits have increased 15% - there has never been a better time to apply and get SNAP.  Learn more about getting SNAP at gettingSNAP.org.

Find out if you are eligible for SNAP today by calling Project Bread's FoodSource Hotline at 1-800-645-8333. If you are eligible, we can help you apply over the phone. 

You can also apply on your own online at DTA Connect.

 

Child Nutrition Program

Free Meals for Kids & Teens

Free meals are currently being provided for all kids and teens at sites across Massachusetts. These meals will continue to be provided through the end of September 2021.

All kids and teens are eligible for these meals, no registration or identification is required to pick them up. 

If you have questions about receiving meals from your school district, please contact them directly. 

Find free meals for kids, please note this information is continously updated.

 

Women, Infants, and Children

WIC

WIC is a nutrition program that provides healthy foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding support, and referrals to healthcare and other services, free of charge, to Massachusetts families who qualify.

WIC’s goal is to help children under 5 and those that are pregnant, just had a baby or are breastfeeding stay healthy.

ALL WIC Programs are providing all services by phone during the pandemic. The WIC website​ contains updated information and individuals may contact the local WIC programs with any questions about breastfeeding, nutrition, and shopping.

WIC is available to all families regardless of immigration or citizenship status. Check out WIC's eligibility page to see how families can apply online for WIC services.  Individuals receiving SNAP and many types of MassHealth are automatically income-eligible for WIC.

Parents, grandparents and foster parents may apply for children under the age of five years who are in their care.

Families can also call WIC at 1-800-942-1007 or 617-721-6601 weekdays Monday through Friday 9am – 5pm.  If you hear a recording, please leave a message with your name and telephone number or email a Local WIC Program directly with any questions. 

 

Pandemic EBT for eligible students

P-EBT

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 authorized the payment of P-EBT food benefits to households with children who would have received free or reduced-price school meals at a public school, if not for a school closure. These temporary food benefits are to help cover the cost of meals children would otherwise would have received at school.  To date, over 588,000 Massachusetts school children have received P-EBT and $389 million in benefits have been issued!

Using P‑EBT does NOT impact you or your child’s immigration status.  The public charge rule does NOT apply to P‑EBT funds.

2020/2021 School Year

P-EBT benefits are issued on a black and white EBT card that works like a debit card.  Families who receive SNAP benefits or cash assistance will receive P-EBT benefits on the EBT card they already have.

Throughout the 2020/2021 school year, eligible students in hybrid learning situations will receive $68.20 per month and eligible students in remote learning situations receive $136.40 per month.

Students receiving P-EBT can still pick up meals from grab-and-go student meal sites.

**Children ages 0-5 living in a SNAP household are now receiving P-EBT benefits!**  Eligible children will get either $68.20 (hybrid) or $136.40 (fully remote) per month. The amount is based on whether MOST school-aged students getting P‑EBT are in a hybrid or fully remote learning situation each month.

Need Help?

  • I need my student's case number to activate my P-EBT card.  Get your student's case number online by entering their P-EBT card number into the P-EBT Case Information Form

 

 

  • Do I have to use all of my benefits each month?  How can I check the balance?  You have a full year from the time your benefits are issued to spend the funds. To check your balance, go to https://dtaconnect.eohhs.mass.gov/pebt

 

  • My student hasn’t received their P-EBT card or benefits.  What should I do? Call the DTA Assistance Line at 1-877-382-2363.

 

  • I need to update my address. You need to contact DTA to update your address. Call the DTA Assistance line at 1-877-382-2363.

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For all other questions about P-EBT, who will receive benefits, and more, please visit www.map-ebt.org

 

 

Home delivered meals for seniors

Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels is a program that offers well-balanced meals to adults through home delivery or congregated dining sites.

Meals on Wheels is run by senior nutrition agencies located throughout Massachusetts. To find the closest agency to you, call 1-800-243-4636.

If you need home-delivered meals, staff will make an appointment for a home-delivered meal assessment.

free emergency groceries

Food Pantries

Food pantries provide free emergency groceries to individuals and families in their local communities.

For the latest information about pantry hours and operations, please visit:

 

Please Note: If you are seeking support from food pantries at this time, and are not currently enrolled in SNAP, Project Bread strongly encourages you to learn if you are eligible for SNAP benefits and to apply. This will provide you with consistent, monthly cash assistance to purchase your own groceries.