A food pantry staff member helps a client with his selections.
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Visit our Food Pantry links for daily pantries & meal sites in Tompkins County.

An older adult man purchasing groceries with SNAP Benefits.  
(High resolution image available on the link below)
Image by USDA

Use your SNAP benefits EBT card to pay at grocery stores and farmers' markets.

A group of children have lunch in the school cafeteria.
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The National School Lunch Program provides healthy, low-cost or free meals each school day.

SNAP to Market graphics.

Your EBT/Food Stamp/SNAP card is welcome at a farmers' market near you!

Food Assistance Programs

Making ends meet during difficult times can be easier with help from the right programs and other community resources. Cornell Cooperative Extension works with many local food assistance programs to help families, individuals and seniors find and access food resources that best meet their needs.

Local Programs:

Daily Food Pantries & Community Meals- The Tompkins County Human Services Coalition website has an online calendar that gives the hours and locations of food pantries and community meals offered in Tompkins County on each day of the week.

FoodNet Meals on Wheels provides home-delivered meals-on-wheels, community center meals, nutrition assessments, nutrition counseling, and help applying for SNAP benefits (formerly Food Stamps) for older adults and other persons in Tompkins County. Foodnet Meals on Wheels, 2422 N Triphammer Rd, Ithaca, NY 14850 (607) 266-9553.

Food Bank of the Southern Tier distributes food and other grocery products to more than 165 member agencies that then serve people in need, such as food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and other hunger relief organizations in Broome, Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben, Tioga and Tompkins Counties. They also offer direct food distribution programs including the BackPack Program™ and Mobile Food Pantry.

Friendship Donations Network (FDN) rescues fresh nutritious food from stores, restaurants and farms that would be thrown away and redistributes it to food pantries and community feeding sites where it reaches people in need. Here is the list of programs they serve, but to find a pantry on any day of the week, go to the first Food Pantries link listed above. FDN also coordinates a pilot-program in Ithaca called Neighborhood Food Hubs in which gardeners can donate extra vegetables to local food pantries.

Healthy Food For AllIf you are WIC or Food Stamp eligible, HFFA gives you the option to purchase a weekly share of the harvest from local participating farms at 50% off. Your share will provide a large quantity and variety of fresh organic produce to feed your family every week. Additional subsidies available for single parents with children 5 and under. Contact at info@healthyfoodforall.org or call Cooperative Extension at 607-272-2292 ext 242.

State & National Programs:

MyBenefits.Gov - New York State residents can visit this web site to find out if you are eligible for help through SNAP (formerly Food Stamps), Nutrition Education,  Temporary Assistance, HEAP,  WIC, School Meals and  Summer Meal Programs.

SNAP / (formerly Food Stamp) benefits help low-income working people, seniors, the disabled and others feed their families.  The USDA’s SNAP-Ed connection web site provides great tips and resources. Choose from: Healthy Eating on a Budget, 10 Steps to Help fill your grocery bag, Ways to Manage Your Food Dollars and MORE at SNAP's Eat Right when Money's Tight website.

The SNAP-to-Market website helps you find NY Farmers' Markets where you can use your SNAP benefits (formerly Food Stamps) and explains how to make Farmers' Market purchases with them.  You'll also find information on when fruits and vegetables are in-season at your market, and recipes to use with produce you buy.  

WIC - the Women, Infants & Children’s Supplemental Food Program provides nutritious foods, nutrition education, and referrals to community services for low-income pregnant and post-partum women and their children under five years of age. Breastfeeding support is available. Find out if you are eligible for WIC, see a schedule of monthly WIC clinics in locations around Tompkins County, and other WIC resources on this website. Tompkins County Health Department, 55 Brown Road, Ithaca, New York 14850

Our educational program series and lessons help families and households to stretch their food dollars to make healthier choices and eat better for less! Our SNAP-Ed New York Program helps individuals and families who have limited resources to gain the knowledge and skills to make healthier food and activity choices.

Last updated August 25, 2023