Anti-Hunger Response to COVID-19
October 26, 2020
The global coronavirus has brought uncertainty and anxiety into people’s lives, workplaces, and neighborhoods, particularly for those who work to improve the health of our communities.
During this difficult time, many organizations across New York State are working tirelessly to keep people safe, especially the most vulnerable. In response, NYHealth is supporting statewide and local efforts to address emerging health care and public health needs in the wake of the pandemic. In 2020, NYHealth awarded Hunger Solutions New York a grant to ensure that federal nutrition programs can serve as many New Yorkers as possible during the pandemic.
Under this grant, Hunger Solutions New York advocated for policies that expand access and reduce barriers to nutrition assistance programs for New Yorkers, with a focus on households with children, people of color, and those who are unemployed. It provided technical assistance to service providers and community-based organizations on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) guidelines and waivers and help them enroll eligible New Yorkers and maximize their benefits. Hunger Solutions New York also worked with the New York State Education Department to ensure schools have accurate, updated information on meal program waivers, as well as advocated for policy changes that allow them to feed as many children as possible. Finally, it identified barriers to enrollment in Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and educated stakeholders and community partners on how to increase participation among eligible New Yorkers.