ALBANY – Governor Andrew Cuomo Monday announced $4.5 million in grants to help 2,600 emergency food providers throughout New York State respond to an increased need for food assistance following the recent reduction in federal SNAP benefits that has impacted 3.1 million New Yorkers. The Governor also encouraged New Yorkers and businesses to donate food or volunteer at a local food bank this holiday season.
Overall, the number of emergency meals reported for 2013 is trending at approximately 13 percent more than the same time last year, according to data provided to the State’s Hunger Prevention and Nutrition Assistance Program. Recent federal cuts to the SNAP program will eliminate a total of $302 million of annual SNAP benefits in New York. This year’s increased demand for emergency food has resulted in emergency food providers struggling to keep their shelves full.
Locally, the Wetern New York Food Bank will receive over $318,000 in additional funding while thee Chautauqua County Rural Ministry, Inc. will see over $22,000 more in funding.