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The University of California (UC-FSNEP) and the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) have developed a joint proposal to implement the Food Stamp Nutrition Education Program (FSNEP) to address the nutrition education needs of California’s Food Stamp recipients for FFY 07. This year, UC-FSNEP will be working closely with its partner, the California Nutrition Network, located in the Department of Health Services, Sacramento, California.
CDSS is the designated state agency responsible for the administration of the Food Stamp Program in California. The University of California, Davis Campus is the administrator of UC-FSNEP. UC-FSNEP is implemented by the Cooperative Extension arm of the Division of Agriculture at Natural Resources (UCCE-DANR). UCCE has County Extension offices in 52 counties in California and offers research-based programs in Home Economics, Agriculture, Toxicology, Forestry and other Natural Resources. County Nutrition Advisors, Youth Advisors and Farm Advisors coordinate, direct and implement research and education programs, training, and public service to all Californians. In addition, the statewide Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is operated by UC.
CDSS will renew the inter-agency agreement with UC to provide nutrition education services in accordance with the provisions of this Nutrition Education Plan (NEP). UC will provide the state match to fund the program. CDSS will serve as the conduit for the federal matching funds and will assist as needed with liaison activities with county welfare departments. In addition to the contact between the local county extension offices and county welfare departments, CDSS will keep all counties informed of nutrition education activities and opportunities on an as-needed basis.
UCCE staff will work cooperatively with the local county welfare departments and other local agencies to provide nutrition education services to Food Stamp applicants and recipients. It is not the intent of this project to increase the workload of the county welfare department. County welfare departments will be encouraged to assist with UCCE’s activities whenever possible (e.g. distribute newsletter, offer space for classes, etc.), but are not mandated to perform functions that cannot be absorbed into the normal workload without creating a burden and incurring additional costs.
The program consists of Adult and Youth program components and will operate in 42 California counties, some of which are in multiple county program groups called “program units” (e.g., The Adult FSNEP program unit of Monterey/San Benito/Santa Cruz serves three counties while the Youth FSNEP program unit of Sutter/Yuba serves two counties.) An ADULT nutrition education program will enroll Food Stamp eligibles on a voluntary basis at the local county welfare department and other sites. Nutrition education lessons will focus on the following topics: self-sufficiency, food budgeting, managing resources, food preparation skills, food safety and sanitation, and feeding infants and children. A YOUTH nutrition education program will target schools with large numbers of students from Food Stamp households (over 50% enrolled in the free and reduced-price school lunch). Teachers at the school sites will be trained to deliver a nutrition education program targeted at youth audiences.
This plan utilizes the existing UCCE infrastructure. Using this structure will provide trained program staff (there is a Home Economist and/or Youth Advisor in every county we are targeting who will manage and supervise the program at the local level); office space and resources (in Cooperative Extension county offices); and program materials (FSNEP materials are available in all counties where a food and nutrition professional is available). Education delivery is not in proportion to the size of the county Food Stamp population.
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