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COVID-19 Food Assistance Resources

March 30, 2020

1. CalFresh (formerly known as food stamps) – Provides money for groceries on a debit card. Eligibility is determined based on current income and certain expenses. You can find more info and apply online at http://getcalfresh.org

2. WIC – Provides money for specific foods on a debit card (no more paper coupons!). WIC ordinarily requires you to apply in person but due to the pandemic they are doing phone applications. WIC is an income-based program for infants, children under 5, and pregnant/breastfeeding/postpartum women. Click here to find the phone number for the office nearest you.

3. School meals – School districts are providing free grab’n’go meals for children 18 and under (no infants). The child does not have to be enrolled in the school district, meaning meals can be picked up for kids who are too young to attend kindergarten, who go to private school, etc. 

Alameda County

Contra Costa County

San Francisco County

Other CA counties: The California Department of Education created an app to help families locate where they can get school meals. You can also find a list of school districts and their schools distributing meals here (excel sheet).

4. Food banks – You can get free food from your local food bank. Many are distributing fresh fruits and vegetables along with other items. To maintain social distancing, many food banks are doing drive-thru distributions. 

Alameda County Community Food Bank – Call 510-635-3663 or visit FoodNow.net to find food today 

Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano – Call 1-855-309-3663

San Franciso-Marin Food Bank – Call 415-282-1900 or visit their Food Locator

Find a food bank in another CA county at /find-food-bank

5. 2-1-1 – 2-1-1 is a 3-digit dial code, which means you can reach them by dialing 2-1-1 on your phone. You’ll be connected to a live person who will be able to connect you to resources/programs you might be eligible for (including food, utility assistance, tax preparation, shelter, transportation, etc.). It’s a free service, open 24/7.

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