Families and individuals who meet the program’s income guidelines are eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly the Food Stamp program). The size of a family’s SNAP benefit is based on its income and certain expenses.
Below is the income eligibility guideline table for the SNAP program:
# in Household= 1
Gross Monthly Income= $1,354
# in Household= 2
Gross Monthly Income= $1,832
# in Household= 3
Gross Monthly Income= $2,311
# in Household= 4
Gross Monthly Income= $2,790
Gross Monthly Income= +$479
What counts as income?
SNAP counts cash income from all sources, including earned income (before payroll taxes are deducted) and unearned income, such as cash assistance, Social Security, unemployment insurance, and child support.
Dispelling SNAP Myths
There are many myths about the SNAP program. Check out this printable handout from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Myth: SNAP is welfare.
Fact: The SNAP Program is a nutrition assistance program that changes lives and helps communities. It helps low income people buy nutritious foods. It is not welfare.
Myth: Other people need SNAP more; I don’t want to take them away from someone else.
Fact: SNAP is an entitlement program. Anyone who applies and is eligible will get SNAP benefits. This will not reduce the amount that goes to anyone else.
Myth: You have to go to the office and wait many hours to get an appointment.
Fact: The Greater Cleveland Food Bank Help Center can help you complete an application over the phone. The process is quick and confidential. The Food Bank also has outreach workers that can come to community events to help you apply.
Myth: SNAP is only for families.
Fact: SNAP benefits are for anyone who applies and qualifies, including single individuals, seniors, and veterans.
Myth: Other people will know I use SNAP benefits.
Fact: You use benefits by running an Ohio Direction card through the credit card machine at the grocery store. It is used just like any other debit card and is discreet.
Myth: SNAP is not worth applying for since you only get $15.
Fact: The amount of SNAP benefits depends on household size, income, and certain expenses. The average SNAP benefit per person per month in Ohio is $124; per family it's $250.
If you have questions about SNAP, or aren't sure where to begin, please contact The Greater Cleveland Food Bank Help Center.