WICHITA, Kan. (WIBW) — Beginning in January, the Kansas Health Foundation (KHF) will support a program to bring healthy food to families in need and funnel dollars to local farmers and economies.
KHF’s board of directors approved a grant of more than $1.9 million to enhance the Double Up Heartland Collaborative’s efforts to expand Kansas’s existing Double Up Food Bucks program.
This program will assist SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) individuals and families so they may afford fresh produce by offering incentives at participating Kansas grocery stores and farmers markets.
“KHF is proud to support this program expansion, which will enable vulnerable Kansans to obtain what most of us in the nation’s breadbasket take for granted – reliable access to nutritious food to support a healthy lifestyle,” said Reggie Robinson, KHF president and CEO. “Expanding the state’s Double Up Food Bucks program will not only bring more healthy food to families in need, it will also support Kansas farmers and strengthen local economies.”
The Double Up Food Bucks program doubles the value of the United States Department of Agriculture’s SNAP benefits spent at participating farmers’ markets and grocery stores, creating three-fold benefits: Low-income families bring home healthy food, local farmers gain new customers and capital, and more food dollars stay in the local economy.
Through this 3-year initiative, Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) – a key partner in the collaborative – will work to implement the Double Up Food Bucks programs in at least 47 farmers markets and 40 grocery stores in Kansas and in the Kansas City metro area by 2022.
The collaborative will also raise program awareness by reaching out to approximately 30,000 SNAP recipients and community partners where the program is offered.