Danville, VA -- Millions of Americans getting federal assistance are seeing their benefits cut Friday because funds from the Stimulus Package are no longer available for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.SNAP participants will see a little more than a 5% decrease in benefits. That's about $36 a month for a family of four. And for a lot of locals, that money really means a lot.
Feeding a family of four with another child on the way already has its challenges for Jazmin Mack."It's really hard. Snacks for school and sometimes lunches," said Mack.
But now her $668 of SNAP benefits a month will be cut down by about $20, which is something she doesn't know how to explain to her young children.
"It makes me feel horrible to have to be able to tell them. I already have to tell them no to a whole lot of things but for to have to be something like that, a snack or something, that makes me feel horrible," said Mack.
SNAP participants received a boost from the Stimulus Package back in 2009, but now that's over. So beneficiaries will go back to the level they had before.
"It's a little depressing knowing that I depend on it every month," said Mack.
At the Salvation Army, Captain Karl Dahlin anticipates feeling this change too.
"I'm concerned to be able to meet the need. I don't want to have to turn anybody away," said Dahlin.
This year they've already seen a huge increase in the amount of people in need of a meal but this will likely only add to the numbers.
"It's pretty tough, our budget is very tight," said Dahlin.
Mack hopes she will still be able to count on places like the Salvation Army. She expects she'll be relying on them even more.
Mack says the food she will probably have to cut first will be the healthy more expensive items for herself. Which is not something she wants to do.
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