FOOD BENEFITS AVAILABLE FOR SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA WILDFIRE AND/OR MUDSLIDE VICTIMS

SACRAMENTO –The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) today announced that, as part of the continuing disaster recovery effort, individuals and families impacted by the wildfires and/or mudslides in Santa Barbara or Ventura counties may be eligible to receive one month of Disaster CalFresh food assistance.

A family of four with a monthly income up to $2,755 per month may be eligible to receive up to $640 in food assistance through California’s Disaster CalFresh program. Households can apply for this assistance Tuesday, February 6 through Wednesday, February 14. In most cases, Disaster CalFresh food assistance benefits will be available within three days of the date of application.

“Disaster CalFresh food assistance is intended to help those negatively impacted by the wildfires and mudslides,” said CDSS Director Will Lightbourne. “We stand with these hard-working communities as they continue to recover.”

On February 1, 2018, the United States Department of Agriculture approved California’s request for Disaster CalFresh food assistance to enhance the recovery effort in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. The program is known nationally as the Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or D-SNAP.

Wildfire and/or mudslide victims may apply for CalFresh disaster food assistance in-person at local social service agency offices throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Disaster CalFresh benefits will be provided via an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, which is similar to a debit card that can be used to purchase food items at grocery stores and other authorized retailers.

WHO CAN APPLY?

Individuals and families who lived or worked in Santa Barbara or Ventura counties may be eligible for Disaster CalFresh food assistance if the household experienced at least one of the following as a direct result of the wildfires and/or mudslides:

  • Damage to or destruction of the home or self-employment business;
  • Loss or inaccessibility of income, including a reduction or termination of earned income or a significant delay in receiving income due to disaster related problems; or
  • Disaster-related expenses (e.g. home or business repairs, temporary shelter, evacuation, etc.) that are not expected to be reimbursed during the disaster benefit period.

WHEN TO APPLY

Individuals and families affected by the wildfires and/or mudslides who are seeking food assistance may apply for Disaster
CalFresh beginning February 6, 2018 by visiting a social service agency in Santa Barbara or Ventura counties. Additional application sites and more information is available at http://www.cdss.ca.gov/Disaster-Help-Center.

In addition, individuals or families with new needs for assistance due to the wildfires and/or mudslides may always apply
for regular CalFresh benefits and CalWORKs cash aid at their local social service agency or online at www.benefitscal.com.

QUESTIONS: CALL YOUR COUNTY

Santa Barbara County Service Center: (844) 289-4682

Ventura County Service Center: (888) 472-4463

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CDSS Media Center link. http://www.cdss.ca.gov/Media-Center

Disaster help Center link. http://www.cdss.ca.gov/Disaster-Help-Center

Contact: Michael Weston
(916) 657-2268

Shawn Boyd

Shawn Boyd joined Cal OES as a public information officer in 2014 after a 20-year career in television news as a reporter, anchor and executive producer. He's a Cal State Sacramento alum and former US Navy yeoman and Air Force brat.

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