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Welcome to the SNAP Challenge!

This September for Hunger Action Month many across North Dakota (myself included), from government officials to local church leaders, are pledging to take the SNAP Challenge and live on a food budget of $4.25 per person per day/$29.75 for the week.
Welcome to the SNAP Challenge!

September is Hunger Action Month

“The SNAP/Food Stamp Challenge gives participants a view of what life can be like for millions of low-income Americans. Most participants take the Challenge for one week, living on a little over $4 per day worth of food – the average food stamp benefit. Challenge participants are forced to make food shopping choices on a limited budget, and often realize how difficult it is to avoid hunger, afford nutritious foods, and stay healthy with too few resources. While living on a food stamp budget for just a week cannot come close to the struggles encountered by low income families week after week and month after month, it does provide those who take the Challenge with a new perspective and greater understanding.”

-  from the FRAC SNAP Challenge Toolkit, http://frac.org/initiatives/snapfood-stamp-challenges/

SNAP Challenge Rules

  • $4.25 per person per day or $29.75 for the week (the 2012 average per recipient in ND) to spend on all food and beverages during the Challenge.
  •  All food purchased and eaten during the Challenge week, including fast food and dining out, must be included in the total spending.
  •  During the Challenge, only eat food that you purchase for the project. Do not eat food that you already own (this does not include spices and condiments).
  • Don’t forget to account for all beverages. This includes coffee.
  • Avoid accepting free food from friends, family, or at work, including at receptions, briefings, or other events where food is served.
  • Keep track of receipts on food spending and reflect on your experiences throughout the week.
  • Bonus activity: Track your food on SuperTracker. http://www.choosemyplate.gov/supertracker-tools/supertracker.html

What  you can purchase with SNAP benefits...

  • Meat and dairy products
  • Produce and canned goods
  • Dried goods, beans and rice
  • Breads and cereals
  • Baby food and infant formula
  • Soda, chips and candy
  • Coffee and tea
  • Seeds (whether for eating or planting)

What is not allowed using SNAP...

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Cigarettes
  • Hot food (e.g. rotisserie chicken) or any food that you eat in-store (salad bar)
  • Medicine and vitamins
  • Non-edible household items like paper towels, toilet paper and soap
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