Food stamps and WIC checks begin distribution
Food stamps and the WIC program will begin issuing their October benefits today, says Director of the Department of Human and Social Services, Taeaoafua Dr. Meki Solomona in a statement he issued yesterday afternoon.
The DHSS Director noted he’s pleased to announce that the American Samoa Nutrition Assistance Program (ASNAP) and the American Samoa WIC Program (ASWIC) will begin issuing approximately $1 million in October benefits to all recipients on Friday, October 4, 2013.
The food stamps will be issued for the next five working days. The delay in the issuance of the WIC and food stamps was due to the shut down of the US Government.
According to the DHSS Director all the WIC recipients who have not received their food instruments or WIC checks for the month of October have been scheduled to see their caseworkers at all WIC clinics beginning today.
“Those who received their October WIC checks may use them at any authorized WIC vendor beginning today,” he stated.
The Director further pointed out that he’s grateful to the Food and Nutrition Service Regional Administrator Jesus Mendoza and DHSS’s Federal partners with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in both San Francisco and their head office in Washington, DC for their swift response to our request to make monies available for DHSS to continue to provide benefits to families in American Samoa, particularly to low-income elderly, blind and disabled individuals and women, infants and children up to the age of five.
“I would also like to extend my appreciation to Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga for immediately approving our request for DHSS to remain open to provide critically needed human and social services to the people of American Samoa. The approval from the Governor and the support from Lieutenant Governor Lemanu Peleti Mauga and Treasurer Falema’o Pili and staff now make it possible for DHSS to continue to support low-income families and individuals who are struggling to make ends meet, especially given these troublesome economic times.”
According to the DHSS Director, the ASNAP Program serves 4,663 low-income elderly, blind and disabled individuals while the American Samoa WIC Program serves 1,237 women, 1,069 infants up to 12 months and 4,235 children or a total of 6,541 WIC recipients.
Taeaoafua further stated in addition to these two programs, DHSS also runs varied programs and services that offer assistance to many other underserved and vulnerable populations throughout the islands including people with substance use disorders, abused and neglected children and victims of domestic violence.
FOOD STAMP SCHEDULE
The schedule for food stamp recipients is as follows;
Friday, Oct. 4: Recipients whose last names begin with letters G, H, I, J, K and L
Monday, Oct. 7: Recipients whose last names begin with letters M, N, O, P, Q and R
Tuesday, Oct. 8: Recipients whose last names begin with letters S, V, W, X, Y and Z
Wednesday, Oct. 9: Recipients whose last names begin with letters T and U
Thursday, Oct. 10: Recipients whose last names begin with letters A, B, C, D, E and F
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