Image by Devon Breen from Pixabay
North Carolina filed to extend Child Care P-EBT food assistance benefits for the 2021-22 school year, First issuance scheduled for next week.
Next week, the youngest children in North Carolina who are eligible for food assistance benefits will begin receiving additional monthly benefits tied to the COVID-19 pandemic for the 2021-2022 school year. North Carolina is one of the first states in the nation to receive approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the 2021-2022 Pandemic Child Care Electronic Transfer of Benefits food assistance program.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services will issue the first round of Child Care P-EBT benefits next week to nearly 220,000 children who were eligible in September and October 2021. These benefits will continue to be issued monthly through August 2022, covering food needs for children who were eligible from September 2021 through May 2022. Children are eligible if they were 5 years old or younger as of September 1, 2021 and participated in Food and Nutrition Services (FNS).
“The P-EBT program helps ensure that our youngest children have access to nutritious foods that are essential for their growth, development and well-being,” said NCDHHS Principal Assistant Secretary Susan Gale Perry. “These benefits help families increase their food budgets and protect the health and well-being of young children.”
Families do not need to take any action to receive these additional benefits, and there is no application for this program. Families can expect to receive benefits on their existing FNS EBT cards. In addition, they can check if their children are eligible for this program using the online eligibility flowchart (Spanish version) . Families are also encouraged to make sure their mailing addresses are current with their local county department of social services to receive notifications.
Additional rounds of benefits will be issued monthly through August 2022. Children eligible for Child Care P-EBT will receive a monthly benefit amount established by NCDHHS using USDA guidelines. All eligible children in the state will receive the same amount; however, this amount may change monthly. The benefit amount for each Child Care P-EBT issue and schedule will be posted on the P-EBT website .
North Carolina was one of the first states to launch P-EBT for children in K-12 schools and child care settings early in the pandemic. To date, this federally funded program has provided more than $1.76 billion in groceries to more than 1.36 million children at risk of hunger due to decreased school and child care attendance due to circumstances related to the pandemic.