SALT LAKE CITY — The pandemic-induced food assistance program for families of students who were receiving free or reduced priced meals is closing enrollment on Monday, August 31.
The program provides a one-time benefit of $308 to students in kindergarten through 12 grade who were receiving free or reduced priced meals on or before March 16.
For families like Viviana Montano's, a recipient of the program, the money has helped pay for groceries during these tough times.
"It's really nice to have the program," Montano said. "You know in this pandemic [people] lose their job, and it's really good that they have something so they can breathe. So they know their kids are eating healthy."
According to Alex Cragun, Food Security Advocate for Utahns Against Hunger, only 35 percent of families who qualify for the program have signed up.
"While modest, these benefits will be able to fill budget gaps for tens of thousands of families," Cragun said. "The Department of Workforce Services just issued the first benefits for families who applied and distributed more than $6 million dollars. Not only does that help families buy food but has a real impact on the economy”
About 60,000 children whose households were receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits on or before March, 16, 2020, have already received their P-EBT benefit.
To apply for the program, and learn more about its benefits, visit their website here.