WOOSTER — A new program at the Wooster Hope Center will bolster the nutritional options for some of its most vulnerable patrons.
The Wooster Hope Center will offer a new service for low-income seniors in partnership with the Commodity Supplemental Food Program and the Akron Canton Regional Food Bank.
“Over the past year, I have seen an increase in the number of seniors in our community that needed assistance and I began to look for ways the Wooster Hope Center could assist in that area,” said Richard Frazier. “When the Akron Canton Regional Food Bank reached out to see if we wanted to offer these senior food boxes, we knew it was something we needed to be a part of our community.”
The Ohio CSFP program is administered by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and primarily serves low-income elderly residents (people at least 60 years of age) whose diets lack proper nutrition. Residents who meet the qualifications for CSFP can visit the Wooster Hope Center once per month to receive fruits, vegetables, dairy and more.
The income eligibility guidelines for the Ohio CSFP is based on 130% of the federal poverty income guidelines.
The CSFP differs from programs like SNAP as claimants are not provided with benefits with which to buy food. The program is similar to the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), which the Wooster Hope Center currently offers through the Greater Wayne County Food Pantry.
Registration for the new Senior Food Program will be on Tuesday, Nov. 19 from 1-3 p.m. at the Wooster Hope Center, located at 807 Spruce St. Residents need to bring a photo ID with current address. The first 50 eligible registrants will receive a box of food to take home on Tuesday, just in time for Thanksgiving.
The Wooster Hope Center is the largest food pantry in Wayne County. It serves nearly 1,000 families a week through its food pantry, backpack program and programs through the University of Akron Wayne College and the Village of Fredericksburg. The center distributes about 25,000 pounds of food per week.
— Reporter Emily Morgan can be reached at 330-287-1632 or firstname.lastname@example.org.