United Way of Palm Beach County has partnered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to provide free, confidential, and secure preparation and e-filing of tax returns to qualified taxpayers. To qualify, taxpayer’s income must have been $70,000 or less in 2022. You may be eligible for up to $6,935 in Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC). The Taxes Filed Free service gives you two options to choose from to e-file your tax return. All options are supported by IRS-Certified Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) volunteers.
Filed for You – Face-to-face tax preparation provided at several county sites. No appointment needed.
Filed Yourself – Visit www.MyFreeTaxes.com and file your own tax return. It’s simple, fast and secure. Support is available via toll-free helpline or web chat.
For more information on where to find a VITA tax site, or what to bring to your tax filing session click here.
Palm Beach County Senior Centers: The Palm Beach County Community Services Department’s Division of Senior and Veteran Services invites local seniors and veterans aged 60 and older to participate in complimentary breakfast and lunch options at various sites throughout the county. The program provides nutritious meals to eligible seniors at nutrition sites, senior centers, and other group settings. The congregate meal program allows older adults to socialize with other seniors at the meal sites. For a complete list of meal times and locations, click here.
SNAP Online Shopping: Online shopping is a convenient, safe, secure way to shop for food, and quickly becoming a vital resource for nutrition security and food access. Major retailers nationwide continue to make online SNAP purchasing available for EBT card holders. For more information about the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot and to find a retailer in Florida offering this resource, click here.
School District of Palm Beach County (SDPBC) FREE Meals: School breakfasts and lunches are now free for ALL children in schools that participate in the National School Lunch Program with SDPBC. Your children can eat delicious, nutritious breakfasts and lunch at school every day of the school week! Click here to check out the menu for your school.
Instacart Now Accepting SNAP: SNAP benefits can be used to buy groceries at participating stores using Instacart. Delivery is free on the first three orders over $35 when using SNAP, through 12/31/22. To learn more, click here.
DoorDash Project DASH: DoorDash has delivered over 25 million meals since 2018 through Project DASH. Project DASH helps non-profits deliver meals, groceries, and more to people with limited transportation. Please click here to learn more about Project DASH and how you can participate.
United Way of Palm Beach County Food Finder Map: The best way to access emergency food is through your local food pantry. UWPBC’s Food Finder Map is updated weekly and has been viewed over 236,000 times! Anyone looking for food or helping others find food is encouraged to look up locations on the map. You can also get help finding food locations by calling 2-1-1.
A robust food pantry system is the best way to ensure people can access emergency food. Pantries rely mainly on food from local food banks and other donations. Inflation and the end of many COVID-era food programs have decreased contributions and food available through the emergency food system. You can learn how to support your local food bank and pantry system through food donations here.
SNAP Communications Toolkit: SNAP Feeds Our Community Campaign (SNAPFeeds.us) has put together a Communications Toolkit for individuals and agencies to uplift SNAP’s many positive impacts on individuals, families, and the community. Access the Toolkit here.
Non-Citizens Reinforced Nutrition Service Programs: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently launched a new webpage for non-citizens and their families that reinforces that families should access the nutrition programs for which they are eligible. This is a helpful one-stop-shop that anti-hunger stakeholders and families can use for key program and eligibility information, as well as how participation in federal nutrition programs has no bearing in a public charge determination.
Looming Cuts to SNAP by New Congress: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Benefits are expected to decrease for millions of recipients as early as March due to cuts in the 2023 Omnibus spending bill. Anti-hunger advocates say the changes will accelerate the looming hunger cliff. Some states, including Florida, have already ended their Emergency Allotments (EAs). EAs for all SNAP recipients will end, with February marking the last month that the EA benefits will be issued. To find out more, click here.
Skimming: By the end of February, state SNAP agencies’ plans on procedures for replacing benefits stolen from SNAP EBT cards are due to USDA. States have some flexibility on how they will verify clients’ “skimming” claims. English and Spanish versions of a webinar on EBT card skimming FRAC and UnidosUS hosted on January 24th are posted to FRAC’s YouTube channel. For technical assistance on replacement benefits for households whose SNAP benefits have been stolen, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Discover MyPlate – Nutrition Education for Kindergarten: The USDA’s Team Nutrition initiative provides fun resources that foster healthy food choices and physically active lifestyles during children’s critical developmental and learning period: kindergarten. Now there are more recipes, food cards, emergent readers, Spanish-language components, and fun new resources showing where food comes from! SNAP-Ed educators can use the materials to assist teachers in introducing the five food groups and MyPlate to kindergarten children. All materials are free and can be found here.
Providers App: Propel, a mission-driven financial technology company, has launched Providers, an application that helps low-income families navigate government benefits and monitor skimming. If you’ve been a victim of benefits theft, report it immediately to your case worker and law enforcement. Currently, more than five million SNAP (food stamp) participants use Fresh EBT monthly to manage their benefits. The app is available on the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. For more information, click here.
February is 211 Awareness Month: Whether you’re looking for financial or food assistance, counseling or caregiver support, home-delivered meals or someone to talk to, transportation, or other services offered in our community, the 211 Helpline has got you covered! With more than 5,000 affiliated programs, 211 helps you connect with services you may not even know existed.
Honoring February as 211 Awareness Month helps get the word out about its life-saving services. 211 connects people to services 24 hours a day, making it easy for people to access information on community resources simply by dialing 2-1-1. The helpline’s mission is to connect people to services 24 hours a day by understanding their individual emotional, financial, and community needs and to support the health & human service system.
Please visit their website for more information on 211 and its countless services.
February is American Heart Month: American Heart Month is when all people can focus on their cardiovascular health. Understanding risk factors for heart disease and how to live a heart-healthy lifestyle are a part of practicing self-care for #OurHearts.
The American Heart Association has called for expanding and improving U.S. nutrition policies and programs to ensure all Americans can access nutritious food. Because heart disease is the number one killer of people in the U.S., it is vital to combat the risk of such a devastating illness with healthy food options for all!
Please click here for more information about AHA and its efforts combatting hunger and promoting nutritious foods.