Food programs offered for seniors


LAKE COUNTY – With rising food prices challenging those with fixed incomes, Community Care’s Senior Information and Assistance program wants to make sure that Lake and Mendocino County seniors know the nutrition programs that can help.

California Food Policy advocates released a report in February stating that fewer than half of eligible Lake and Mendocino individuals are enrolled in the Food Stamp program.

The program allows seniors to have higher incomes and assets than younger applicants. As of Oct. 1, if you are 60 or older you may be eligible if you: have a nest-egg of $3,000 or less (not counting your home or vehicles); have a monthly gross income of $1,430 or less as a single person ($1,925 for couples); and are not receiving SSI/SSP. Call the following to apply: 995-4200 or toll-free 800-628-5288.

Area food banks provide emergency and regular food supports to people of all ages who have individual monthly gross incomes of $1,300 or less (or $1,750 for couples). And unlike the Food Stamps program, food bank programs are available to those who receive SSI/SSP.

Two additional food bank programs are offered to those aged 60 and older.

The Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) provides a monthly 30- to 40-pound box of food to seniors who have a maximum monthly gross income of $1,127 (couples $1,517).

The Senior Brown Bag Program provides twice/monthly offerings to seniors with maximum individual incomes of $1,169 (couples $2,189); a $15 voluntary annual donation is requested of Senior Brown Bag participants.

Both programs have multiple distribution sites to ease the travel burden of food recipients. To learn more about these or other nutrition programs, such as congregate dining or home-delivered meal offerings, call Senior Information and Assistance at 800-510-2020.

Senior Information and Assistance is a free service available Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call toll-free from anywhere in Lake or Mendocino County to talk to an information specialist at Community Care’s Ukiah office.

Visit for an online version of the local Senior and Disabled Resource Directory (also available in print at area libraries and senior centers) and to learn more about Community Care’s programs for seniors and younger disabled adults.