Looking for help?
CalFresh is a nutrition assistance program that helps people purchase food for good health. CalFresh dollars are automatically loaded monthly onto an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) debit card, which is used at stores and farmers' markets, just like any other bank debit card. CalFresh dollars can be spent on food, in addition to seeds and plants that produce food in a garden.
You may qualify for CalFresh if you can answer “yes” to these questions:
- Are you or at least one of your children a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident?
- Is your household’s GROSS monthly income (before taxes and deductions) within the limits in the chart below? (If a household member is 60 or older or permanently disabled, then the income can be higher.)
- Household size of 1 = $2,010
- Household size of 2 = $2,708
- Household size of 3 = $3,404
- Household size of 4 = $4,100
- Household size of 5 = $4,798
- Household size of 6 = $5,494
- Household size of 7 = $6,190
- Household size of 8 = $6,888
- Each additional household member= +$698
*These income guidelines are effective October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018
*Individuals receiving SSI/SSP in California are not currently eligible for CalFresh, but other members of the household may be.
How much could I possibly receive in CalFresh benefits?
The maximum monthly benefit amounts depend on family size:
Ways to apply in Humboldt County:
There are several different options available, to make it as easy as possible to apply.
Apply through Food for People:
- Contact Food for People (707) 445-3166 extension 308, or by email, and set up an appointment to apply at the food bank. We can answer all of your questions and hand in the application for you to the County CalFresh office.
- Drop by Food for People on any Monday between 9am and 3pm (our CalFresh drop-in hours--no appointment needed--holidays excluded) to meet with Michael and ask questions about CalFresh, fill out an application, or get help with CalFresh paperwork or reports.
- If you prefer, you can fill out our online call-back form, and our CalFresh Outreach staff will call you back to answer questions and help you with any next steps, whether it's applying, helping with questions after you have applied, or if you're just looking for more information.
Apply directly with the County:
- Apply at any DHHS Social Services Branch office:
- In Eureka: 929 Koster Street. 1-877-410-8809
- In Garberville: 727 Cedar Street (707) 923-2759
- In Hoopa: 1200 Airport Road (530) 625-4251
- Apply at any of DHHS' Mobile Engagement Vehicle (MEV) locations in a community near you. Visit our Mobile Produce Pantry page to view the schedule and locations of where the MEV and Mobile Produce Pantry are in the county throughout the month.
- Apply online from any computer with internet at www.c4yourself.com.
- Apply online from a computer or smart phone at www.getcalfresh.org. It takes only a few minutes to apply, and you can register to receive text updates throughout the application process. You can also upload or take photos of verification documents with this application, thus removing the need to make copies to be faxed, mailed, or hand delivered.
- Visit one of our community partners providing CalFresh application assistance in Humboldt County communities. View the map and list of sites by clicking here.
Click here to learn more about how to grow a garden with CalFresh, and click here for this information in Spanish.
Resources for Households Already Receiving CalFresh:
SAR 7 (Semi-Annual Report) form: Most households are required to fill out a SAR 7 (Semi-Annual Report) form 6 months after receiving benefits. Click here to download the SAR 7 form. See below for details, and call the DHHS call center (1-877-410-8809) if you're not sure about your reporting timeline, haven't received one in the mail, or have recently moved and not updated your mailing address with DHHS. You must submit your filled out and signed SAR 7 form to DHHS in order to keep receiving CalFresh benfits. Beginning on July 1, 2016, all CalFresh cases will have to complete a SAR 7.
- Households that have a one year certification period will need to submit a SAR 7 in the 6th month.
- Households that reside on a Native American reservation or where all members are elderly/disabled will still receive a two year certification period, but if they have earned income, the household will need to submit 3 SAR7’s, one at 6, 12 and 18 months. If there is no earned income they will only need to submit one SAR7 at 12 months.
Download this SAR 7 help document, with detailed instructional notes on how to fill out the SAR 7.
Recertification/Renewal Form: Recertification is similar to a renewal process and is needed in order to keep receiving CalFresh benefits (1 year for most households; 2 years for some seniors and people with disabilities). If you need a new Recertification Form, download it here and submit to the County in order to keep receiving CalFresh benfits.
More about our CalFresh Outreach program
Our CalFresh Outreach program:
- Advocates for the elimination of bureaucratic barriers to CalFresh (formerly the Food Stamp Program) for low-income seniors, other adults, and children,
- Provides training to community organizations and service providers about CalFresh and how to encourage people to apply,
- Coordinates the Humboldt County CalFresh Task Force, attended by the Humboldt County Department of Human Services and a variety of local organizations serving the low-income community,
- Provides direct education and assistance with the CalFresh application process for food bank program participants and anyone in our community.
CalFresh is a nutrition assistance program that helps households and families buy the food they need for good health. CalFresh dollars help stretch a tight food budget and help people to afford to incorporate healthy foods like fruits and vegetables into their diets. In 2009 Food for People launched the “Bring a Million to Humboldt County” campaign to educate the community about the benefits of what was then known as the Food Stamp Program and to help eligible households apply for benefits.
Benefits are provided on an EBT card (Electronic Benefit Transfer) that is used just like a bank debit card and is accepted at most grocery stores and local farmers’ markets. At farmers’ markets, simply find the market manager’s booth, and swipe your EBT card for any amount in exchange for farmers’ market dollar tokens good for buying directly from local farmers at the market. CalFresh can be used to purchase food and plant starts or seeds that produce food. That means you can grow your garden with CalFresh, and get your hands on the health benefits of fresh fruits and vegetables all season long!
As an extra benefit, the Humboldt Market Match program at local farmers’ markets gives bonus farmers' market dollars for FREE to shoppers utilizing a CalFresh EBT card. The Humboldt Market Match program is available at farmers’ markets in Arcata, Eureka, McKinleyville, Willow Creek, Fortuna, and Garberville. Click here for more information on Humboldt Market Match and to see a farmers' market schedule.
Four Humboldt County farms accept EBT/CalFresh at their farms! CalFresh can be used at their farm stands to buy fresh produce and for purchasing a CSA share. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a partnership between a farm and a community of supporters, who commit to a farm for a whole growing season by purchasing a CSA share. The farmers then provide each member with a weekly distribution of fresh, seasonal produce at the peak of ripeness and nutrition. In a typical CSA arrangement, customers pay upfront for the entire season. CalFresh recipients can use their benefits to participate in a CSA, but can only pay for up to two weeks of food in advance. Click here for more information on which Humboldt County farms participate.
Food for People coordinates the Humboldt County CalFresh Task Force, which brings together County agencies and community partner organizations working on CalFresh Outreach throughout Humboldt County. The group stays current on local CalFresh data, information, and processes, shares information and training, and supports each other's work.
Did you know?
Many of the eligibility rules have changed over the years, making it easier to access CalFresh. It is possible to do the entire application and eligibility process from home. Fingerprints are no longer required, and eligibility interviews can be done over the phone instead of at the county office. You can own your home and vehicles, and have money in the bank, retirement, pension, etc. and still qualify for CalFresh. We see the benefits of these improvements to access every day, as people lose their jobs and are in need of immediate food assistance. In addition, it helps households hang on to the cushion they need in the bank to make it through the near future, college, or retirement.
Feel free to contact us at Food for People to ask questions about CalFresh. Call (707) 445-3166 extension 308 or 318 or email CalFresh@foodforpeople.org.
CalFresh Task Force
Food for People coordinates the Humboldt County CalFresh Task Force, which brings together County agencies and community partners who stay current on local CalFresh information and processes, share information and support each other's work. We encourage community partners to visit the Humboldt County CalFresh Task Force webpage to learn about the CalFresh outreach innovations employed by partners in Humboldt County and view or download materials they have made available to share.