As 2019 comes to a close, we are honored to reflect on some of our achievements:
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
Through our Nutrition Outreach and Education Program (NOEP), we offer confidential, one-on-one assistance in SNAP enrollment. At the end of the 2018-19 fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2019, NOEP helped more than 26,000 households enroll in SNAP. Our Public Affairs team continues efforts to protect and defend SNAP against several attempted cuts at the federal level. We also provided recommendations to strengthen SNAP outreach and enrollment on college campuses across the state as a member of the State University of New York’s (SUNY) Food Insecurity Taskforce.
School Breakfast Program
The School Breakfast Program is an important tool to fight childhood hunger. On an average school day, over 500,000 low-income students participate in free or reduced-price school breakfast. Starting this year, more than 400,000 eligible students have access to no-cost breakfast and lunch because of the elimination of the reduced-price copay passed in the 2019-20 state budget. We also published an annual school breakfast report, providing a comprehensive analysis of school breakfast participation across the state.
Child and Adult Food Care Program and Afterschool Meals (CACFP)
CACFP provides funding and support for child care and afterschool programs to serve healthy meals and snacks to children and teens in their care. To simplify and streamline access to CACFP, we produced the first ever Afterschool Meals Guide for prospective and current CACFP providers and sites. We are encouraged that CACFP’s afterschool meals participation increased by 2.4% during the 2018 federal fiscal year; however, we continue to seek new opportunities to grow interest and participation in CACFP.
When school is out for the summer, many food-insecure children lose access to essential school meals. The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) helps close the nutrition gap between school years so that students are ready to learn year-round. To support growth in SFSP, we produced the Summer Food Service Program Status Report, the only report of its kind to look comprehensively at SFSP participation across the state. In 2019, 381 organizations were approved to sponsor 3,050 sites across the state, providing nutritious meals to about one in three children and teens who rely on healthy school meals.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
We are making a difference in helping pregnant women, new moms and young children access benefits through the WIC in New York State. Our WIC Help New York program—including a network of 10 community-based outreach workers covering 20 counties, as well as statewide information and education—helped over 1,600 people receive WIC benefits this year.