Congressman Tim Ryan Announces Almost $500,000 for Youngstown to Encourage SNAP Participants to Purchase Healthy Foods
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan today announces the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) announcement of $498,880 to encourage Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants in Youngstown, Ohio to purchase healthy foods. In December of 2016, Ryan urged the USDA National Institutes of Food and Agriculture to approve Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation’s proposal. Read more here.
“I was proud that the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation was awarded this important funding to help bring nutritious and healthy food to Youngstown families in need. SNAP is a program that works, and is deserving of more support. This funding will provide incentives for people to buy fresh fruits and vegetables and help provide farmers with a local market to sell their products. Healthy foods should be available to every one of our children, and I promise to continue to use my position to fight to ensure that we are not leaving anyone behind,” said Congressman Tim Ryan.
"This project, entitled Eating for Health in the Mahoning Valley, will increase food access in the Mahoning Valley by broadening funding to help SNAP/EBT customers purchase fresh produce at 6 farmers markets and local food outlets and will also expand the Mercy Health Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program. The 4 year project is being significantly supported by Mercy Health Foundation and includes over 15 project partners working together to support families while increasing revenues to local farmers," said Liberty Avila, Land Reuse Director at Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation.
This money was awarded as a part of a larger $16.8 million investment by the USDA to be distributed through 32 grants to help SNAP participants increase their purchases of fruits and vegetables. The program is operated by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). The funding comes from the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. The awards represent a wide variety of projects, including small pilot projects, multi-year community-based projects, and larger-scale multi-year projects. Last year, SNAP helped put healthy food on the tables of at least 44 million Americans, including 19 million children.