September SNAP Challenge

Because I don’t have enough to do, I’ve decided to join Beth, from Budget Bytes, in the September SNAP challenge.

She still rocks a collander hat.

She still rocks a colander hat.

Unlike Canada, the US has specific food assistance.

The SNAP challenge is for folks to live off of $4.50 a DAY. Not a *meal* folks, A DAY. Per person.

Now, personally, I’ve admitted to having issues with food hoarding. Having been a single Mom, and then Wolf and I being so broke that I sincerely don’t know how we made it through those years, has left me with food issues. I stockpile like a madwoman. Eating down my freezer last month caused me some serious anxiety, to the point where I was actually having trouble sleeping, worrying about the lack of food in the house.

‘Lack of food in the house’, when we have enough food in the basement to get us through probably a month or so. Granted, not much in the way of variety, and not exactly a balanced meal situation, but bellies would be filled.

Which is a billion times (ok, maybe only a couple of hundred, but still) better than where we were the first half of our marriage, where the cupboards were literally bare, and there was NOTHING in the way of food storage.

Part of my challenge, as a Canadian, is going to be the vast difference in food prices.I’m going to put a call in to Social Services tomorrow, and find out what a family our size would qualify for, subtract what of that is deemed ‘housing allowance’ should give me a rough idea of what the food allotment is.

Although, I’ll be honest: at $4.50 per person, per day, my guess is that the US food assistance program will actually be *more* than what welfare would give. At the US rate, that would give us $945 a month, *just* in food. It will be interesting to see what the provincial income assistance program result is. And let me be honest here, folks: I’ll go with whatever the larger number is, and/or only count actual *food* spending. Not diapers, etc. I’ll do my best, honest I will, but the reality of it is, families who receive assistance in Canada rely heavily on food banks, due to no specific food assistance programs.

Also, be prepared for a whole lot of ‘guessing’ being involved. Given that I do have a tonne of staples in the house, I’m going to be guessing a lot when it comes to spices, flour, etc.

So, I’m off to plan my brains out, and see how well this works.

I’ll let you folks know what the actual provincial allotment is for ‘non housing’ costs a month. A word of warning, though: be prepared to be appalled. When I last checked, it was terrifying.


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