Coming Together for Hunger Relief During National Nutrition Month: March 2023 Hunger Relief Update

Posted March 7, 2023

March is National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month is an annual Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics campaign. This year, they are celebrating their 50th anniversary! Everyone is invited to learn about making informed food choices and developing healthy eating and physical activity habits in March. This year’s theme is “Fuel for the Future.” Eating with sustainability in mind is a tasty way to nourish ourselves during every phase of life and protect the environment.

United Way of Palm Beach County is committed to fighting hunger in our community through educating local residents about nutrition and empowering them through access to helpful programs and resources. Please check out our website for information on the WIC Program, SNAP, and much more.

United Way’s Taxes Filed Free Program

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 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.

Food Resources

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.

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.

Food Programs

SNAP Communications Toolkit: SNAP Feeds Our Community Campaign ( 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.

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.

“What is WIC?” Downloadable Videos: The Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Special Supplemental Nutrition Program caters to pregnant women, women after giving birth/postpartum, new and breastfeeding mothers, infants, and children under five who fulfill the income requirements. “What is WIC?” videos are available for download in English, Spanish, Haitian Creole, and Portuguese to help inform residents of the WIC program and its benefits. We encourage our partners to share these videos widely among their networks, including clients, neighbors, and professional partners. The videos are ideal for showing in waiting rooms, attaching to digital newsletters, or sending directly to interested residents. Please click here to access the videos. To schedule an appointment, contact the Florida WIC Department at 1-800-342-3556. Please click here to look at a list of things to bring for your appointment.

Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) Commends USDA for Efforts to Modernize Online Shopping for WIC: The USDA has proposed changes to online ordering related to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). Under the proposed rule, the USDA would work to remove barriers to WIC by no longer requiring participants complete WIC transactions in front of a cashier, granting authority to state agencies to authorize new categories of online vendors, and encouraging states to investigate and plan for cutting-edge future technologies beyond the Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, such as mobile payments. For more information, click here.

FRAC Applauds the U.S. Department of Agriculture Efforts to Expand Community Eligibility: The Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) applauds the USDA’s recent announcement of a proposed rule to expand the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). CEP allows high-poverty schools and districts to offer breakfast and lunch at no charge to all students and reduces administrative paperwork and costs for schools, increases school meal participation, eliminates stigma, maximizes federal reimbursements, and makes it easier to implement Breakfast in the Classroom and other innovative breakfast models. Prior to the pandemic, about one in one in three schools were offering free meals to all students through CEP. To read more about this effort, please click 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.

Shop Simple with MyPlate: Shopping for healthy foods doesn’t have to break the bank. This nifty tool allows you to find savings in your area and discover new ways to prepare budget-friendly foods. It works by entering your zip code to find rewards and stores that accept SNAP EBT near you. To find out more, please click here.

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.

Affordable Connectivity Program: The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) provides eligible low-income households a subsidy of up to $30 per month on internet service plans offered by participating internet service providers and up to $75 per month for eligible households on Tribal lands. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers if the household contributes more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price. For more information and to register, please click here.

Partner Spotlight: University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP)

In Palm Beach County, the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences EFNEP program aids limited-resource families in acquiring the knowledge, skills, attitudes, motivations, and behaviors necessary to improve their diets and overall well-being.

The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is the nation’s first nutrition education program. It remains at the forefront of nutrition education efforts to reduce nutrition insecurity of low-income families and youth today. The UF IFAS EFNEP program builds individuals’ knowledge and skills to select and prepare more nutritious diets, manage a limited food budget, and increase physical activity.

Please visit their website for more information on the Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program in Palm Beach County.

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