This page features resources for households working to put food on the table and the organizations that support them.
What programs exist to support households faced with food insecurity?
Households that could benefit from additional support may be eligible for assistance through the following programs. Eligibility for one program does not guarantee eligibility for all programs as each has its own set of requirements.
- The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) can be used like cash to buy eligible food items from authorized retailers. The amount of assistance depends on the size of the household. Eligible households can utilize the Virginia Fresh Match program, which matches SNAP benefits dollar-for-dollar when purchasing fruits and vegetables at participating farmers' markets and neighborhood grocery stores. A list of participating locations can be found using this interactive map. Households can determine SNAP eligibility here and apply online here.
- The Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC) is a supplemental nutrition program administered by the Virginia Department of Health for women that are pregnant, breastfeeding, or recently had a baby in the last six months, in addition to infants and children. Participants receive an electronic benefit to purchase nutritional foods that will supplement a healthy diet. Households can view eligibility or apply online.
- The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP) are USDA-assisted meal programs for school-aged children. Through NSLP and SBP, many children impacted by food insecurity are eligible for free or reduced-price meals. Some schools in Virginia are able to provide free meals to all students without proof of income through the Community Eligibility Provision. Schools that are unable to provide free meals for all require that families complete applications. Families should check with their school district to determine eligibility and application requirements.
- During the summer months, the Summer Food Service Program and the Seamless Summer Option provide meals at schools, public housing centers, community centers, playgrounds, camps, parks, and places of worship. Households may use the online USDA Meals for Kids Site Finder for locations and times of the closest meal sites. Meals are free for all children aged 18 or younger, and no application or proof of income is needed.
- The Federation of Virginia Food Banks provides a list of food banks across Virginia. To access the Virginia Food Bank Locator, click here.
Where can organizations that support those impacted by food insecurity go for more information?
Individuals interested in learning more about work happening across Virginia should check out the links below. Great work is happening throughout the Commonwealth to address food insecurity:
- 2022 SNAPshot Food Insecurity in Virginia (PDF)
- Federation of Virginia Food Banks Assistance Locator
- FeedVA: Explore Virginia trends in hunger, food access and health
- Governor's Children's Cabinet
- Hunger Action Coalitions
- Hunger Action Coalitions Toolkit (PDF)
- Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program
- Summer Food Service Program
- Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger (PDF)
- Virginia SNAP-Ed Food Security Survey Infographic (PDF)
- Virginia SNAP-Ed Food Security Survey Short Report (PDF)
For questions or more information about food insecurity in Virginia, please email:
- Andrea Gregg, Director, Office of Innovation and Strategic Initiatives at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Kirsten Craft, Innovation Specialist, Office of Innovation and Strategic Initiatives at email@example.com
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