The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
SNAP is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which was formerly known as food stamps. Managed and dispersed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), this program serves as America’s hunger safety net by providing nutrition benefits to help families with limited resources purchase more nutrient-dense foods.
The Need for SNAP
According to Map the Meal Gap (2019):
- Food Insecure People in Indiana: 834,530
- Average Meal Cost in Indiana: $2.74
- Food Insecurity Rate in Indiana: 12.4%
- Estimated Program Eligibility Among Food Insecure People in Indiana:
- 34% = Above Other Nutrition Program threshold of 185% poverty
- 16% = Between 130%-185% poverty
- 50% = Below SNAP threshold of 130% poverty
- Food Insecure Children in Indiana: 239,540
- Child Food Insecurity Rate in Indiana: 15.3%
- Estimated Program Eligibility Among Food Insecure Children in Indiana
- 28% = Likely ineligible for federal nutrition programs (incomes above 185% of poverty)
- 72% = Income eligible for federal nutrition programs (incomes at or below 185% of poverty)
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – Education (SNAP-Ed)
SNAP-Ed is an acronym for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – Education and serves as the nutrition education and obesity prevention arm of SNAP.
SNAP-Ed involves direct education and policy, systems, and environmental change work to increase access to nutritious food and safe physical activity environments among SNAP-eligible populations.
The Need for SNAP-Ed
Indiana’s adult obesity rate is over 35% and ranks #5 in the country (as of 2020).
SNAP-Ed in Indiana
In Indiana, The Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity (DNPA) is the State Agency for the SNAP-Ed Implementing Agency, which is Purdue University Extension.
Indiana Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) was the SNAP-Ed State Agency until 2018, when the program was transferred to the IDOH DNPA to provide in-depth content area expertise and technical assistance to the Implementing Agency.
As the Implementing Agency, Purdue Extension receives funds to implement their Nutrition Education Program, which has five focus areas: nutrition, food safety, food security (hunger), physical activity, and food resource management (stretching food dollars).
Purdue Extension NEPAs & CWCs
Purdue Extension NEPAs and CWCs serve every county in Indiana:
- Nutrition Education Program Advisors (NEPAs) provide fun, engaging, and free nutrition education lessons through evidence-based programming to youth and adults. These hands-on programs teach new skills that can be used at home every day from meal planning, grocery shopping, and cooking tips to simple solutions for healthy eating and physical activity. Learn more about the Indiana Nutrition Education Program.
- Community Wellness Coordinators (CWCs) are embedded within communities across the state and form partnerships to implement policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) strategies that promote healthy living (i.e. community gardens, walking trails, corner store initiatives). They collaborate with community partners to increase nutrition and physical activity access by partnering with local organizations to transform communities and enhance nutrition and physical activity environments where Hoosiers work, eat, play, and shop. Download an introduction to the role Community Wellness Coordinators (PDF).
The Indiana Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity (DNPA)
The Indiana Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity (DNPA) at the Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) provides statewide leadership and technical assistance to improve access to nutritious foods and safe physical activity environments for Hoosiers.
With guidance from the State Health Improvement Plan and large coalitions, like the Hoosier Health and Wellness Alliance, the DNPA works to align statewide strategies to increase physical activity and nutritious food consumption. This is done through the provision of education, training, and grant funding to Hoosier communities.
Stories and data gathered provide a framework for policymakers and public health organizations to better support communities in their journey towards wellbeing and improved health.
SNAP-Ed Annual Plan
Visit our Partner Resources to see the latest SNAP-Ed Annual Plan.