Use your Link Card to Order Groceries Online

You can now use your LINK benefits to pay for groceries from the comfort of your home. You can even have them shipped to your front door!

NOTE: As of 6/4/20, there are reports that Link card online grocery ordering in Chicago through Amazon is having difficulties. If you are unable to place an order with them, it is because of a problem with their website. They are working to fix the problem, and we will update this note when we hear that the problem has been fixed.

You can now use Link (SNAP) benefits to pay for groceries from the comfort of your home. You can even have them shipped to your front door!

Availability

As of June 3rd 2020, in Illinois, you can only use your Link benefits to order groceries online from Amazon or Walmart.

  •  Amazon offers shipping to your door.
  • Walmart only offers store pickup.

You do not need a credit card to order groceries with your Link card.

How to Order Groceries from Amazon

  1. Log In: Go to amazon.com to log in or create an Amazon account.
  2. Add Link Card: Go to amazon.com/snap-ebt to add your Link card to your payment options.
  3. Add Eligible Groceries: Go to amazon.com/snap-ebt and click on one of the circled links below  to view and choose groceries that are eligible to buy with your Link card.
  4. Checkout: Click “Proceed to Checkout” to select your shipping address and finish your order. If you meet the free shipping order minimum, you will not need a credit card.

How to Order Groceries from Walmart

  1. Order: Order groceries at walmart.com/grocery or on the Walmart Grocery mobile app.
  2. Checkout: During checkout, select “EBT Card” as payment method.
  3. Pickup: Swipe your Link card with the Walmart associate when you arrive at the pickup location.

Please download the flyer below and share with your community!

Meal Sites for Families in Need This Week

A list of locations offering free meals for families in need this week in response to program stoppages

Photo credit: Chicago Mayor’s Office

This blog post was adapted from this article by Block Club Chicago.

Chicago Public Schools suspended its free meal program on Monday, June 1st, but the program will return Tuesday, June 2nd. Here’s a list of CPS meal sites. All previously scheduled meal deliveries will still be delivered. People who want to sign up for future deliveries from CPS can call 773-553-KIDS.

In response to food program stoppages, neighborhood groups and local restaurants are coming together to offer relief. Here is a list of locations offering free meals for families in need this week.

  • The 40th Ward Neighbor Network will deliver meals from CPS schools to families that need them Monday, according to Ald. Andre Vasquez. You can sign up to help here.
  • Humboldt Park Montessori, 2540 W. Division St., will have bagged lunches for families needing food starting at 12:15pm until they run out.
  • The Pilsen Food Pantry was calling for volunteers to help with additional food distribution Monday.
  • Cesar’s Killer Margaritas, 3166 N. Clark St. is distributing boxed meals for families in need from 2:30-4:30 p.m. in light of the CPS news. “We ask you practice social distance, and have a face mask,” the restaurant’s owners posted on Facebook.
  • Urban Grill Chicago, 1132 W. Wilson Ave., is offering free lunches to CPS students from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Christ Lutheran Church at 3253 W. Wilson Ave is providing food for families. If you can donate, you can bring by groceries before 1 p.m. The most useful items are bread, sandwich toppings, peanut butter & jelly, rice, soups, non-perishables, microwavable meals and fruits (other than apples).
  • The Rogers Park Community Response Team is working with local food pantries and restaurants for CPS families in need of food assistance. Those in need can contact the response team’s hotline at 773-831-7668.
  • A small group of people are giving away prepared and canned food 1-3 p.m. Monday ay 3000 N. Kedzie Ave.
  • 39th Ward Alderman Samantha Nugent’s office is also working with neighbors in need of food assistance. Please call her office at 773-736-5594 if you or someone you know is in need.
  • New Life Community Church at 3729 W. Leland Ave. is giving out food, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Tuesday.
  • Mexican restaurant Mi Tocaya — in partnership with Logan Square Neighborhood Association and The Power of 10 initiative — is giving out free meals to  Logan Square families in need each week. On Tuesday, the giveaways start at 11 a.m. at Monroe Elementary, 3651 W. Schubert Ave. Check lsna.net for a full pickup schedule.
  • Teachers and staff at Brentano Math & Science Academy, 2723 N. Fairfield Ave., are giving out food. Contact: (773) 534-4100

Get Your Stimulus Check

GetMyPaymentIL.org can help take you get your stimulus payment as quickly as possible.

Most Illinoisans are eligible for Economic Impact Payments from the federal government. Even if you have no income you are eligible, but you might have to take action to receive your check.

You could receive up to $1,200 ($2,400 for a married couple) and $500 for each eligible dependent.

GetMyPaymentIL.org can help take you through each step so you can get your payment as quickly as possible. It provides step-by-step instructions on how to secure your stimulus check and answers common questions you may have.

Also, the recently IRS announced that it will begin adding 3,500 telephone representatives to answers questions about stimulus checks. People can call (800) 919-9835 with their stimulus check related questions.

GetMyPaymentIL.org Flyer:

(Updated) P-EBT: Relief for Households with School-Aged Children

Illinois’ Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program (P-EBT) will provide 316,000 Illinois households with additional funds to replace the meals children can’t access while schools are closed via LINK cards.

Updated 5/26/2020 with new information about how to apply and graphics in Spanish and English

Due to COVID-19, schools across Illinois have been closed. As a result, families with children who got meals at school have been deprived of food.

In response, Illinois’ Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program (P-EBT) is providing 316,000 Illinois households with additional funds to replace the meals children can’t access while schools are closed.

Table of Contents
A Visual Guide to Applying for P-EBT
How much will families receive?
Who is eligible?
How can I apply?

A Visual Guide to Applying for P-EBT

How much will families receive?

  • P-EBT provides an EBT card that can be used at authorized retailers to offset the cost of meals that would have been consumed at school.
  • P-EBT provides the value of school meals at the rate of $5.70 per child per school day.
  • P-EBT will provide benefits for 21 days in May for a total of $119.70 per school-aged child for May. Households that apply and are approved anytime in May will receive benefits retroactive to the beginning of the month.
  • P-EBT will also be available in June.

Who is eligible?

All CPS families qualify for P-EBT Benefits, but must submit an application for P-EBT if they are not enrolled in SNAP!

  • Households with children enrolled in free or reduced-price school meals, or with a child attending a school that provides all meals for free, can apply directly for P-EBT.
  • Households at or below 185% of the federal poverty guideline but who are not receiving SNAP or free or reduced-price school meals should first call their child’s school to enroll in free or reduced-price meals and then apply for P-EBT.
    • CPS families do not need to do this. They should apply directly for P-EBT.
  • Current SNAP participants are automatically eligible for P-EBT and should see the benefit increase on their LINK card.

P-EBT will be in place until the end of the school year, unless schools reopen before that time.

The public charge test does not consider receipt of P-EBT benefits. Using P-EBT benefits will not impact a parent or child’s immigration status.

Undocumented households with school-aged children are eligible for P-EBT.

How can I apply?

  • Current and newly approved SNAP recipients will automatically see these benefits deposited on their LINK Card.
  • Those not currently on SNAP will have to complete a simplified application and if approved will be mailed a LINK card. This application can be completed through the ABE Online Application system. Approved applicants will receive a LINK card in the mail.

To apply for P-EBT directly through IDHS, use the ABE Online Application system or call 800-843-6154. There’s also a paper application that can be filled out and faxed or emailed to IDHS – links to the paper application can be found below.

Legal Aid Chicago can also help you apply for P-EBT!

  • Call them at (312) 347-8342 for help.
  • For more information on Legal Aid Chicago’s Public Benefits Helpline, click here.

Growing Home Job Training Program Accepting Applications

Growing Home’s urban organic farm is currently hiring for its Production Assistant job training program.

Growing Home’s urban organic farm is currently hiring for its Production Assistant job training program.

Based in Englewood, Growing Home is Chicago’s leading expert in farm-based training for people with employment barriers. They know that, when people have jobs, they have economic stability in their lives; this stability allows for healthy people and families. And when communities have access to healthy food options, the overall well-being and health of the residents improves.

Growing Home’s job training program combines time spent working on the on-site urban farm with lessons on work readiness and environmental literacy, an emotional resilience curriculum, and ongoing support for career success post-graduation.

Program Highlights:

  • Applicants who are accepted begin with a job training program that pays $16/hour for 16-20 hours per week.
  • The job training program will be via remote learning due to COVID-19.
  • Applicants must be 18 years or older, unemployed, and Chicago residents.
  • Participants are meant to transition into permanent, full-time employment after graduation.

Program participants also have opportunities to earn professional certifications, gain access to free legal consultation for record sealing and expungement, and receive the support of a case manager available to provide referrals for supportive services.

Last Day to Submit an Application: Friday, June 12th 2020

See this link for more details and check out the flyers below!


Job Training Program Flyers

Unemployment Benefits Now Available to Gig Workers, 1099 Workers, and other Nontraditional Workers

Nontraditional workers whose businesses have been shuttered by the stay at home order can now apply for unemployment benefits through the State of Illinois’s Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program.

The information below was adapted from this article by Block Club Chicago.

Nontraditional workers whose businesses have been shuttered by the stay at home order can now apply for unemployment benefits through the State of Illinois’s Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program.

Those who qualify for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program must first file a regular unemployment claim online or over the phone. Governor Pritzker has recommended people file online.

Once the regular unemployment claim is denied by the regular system, the applicant can then apply for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program.

Click here for the Block Club Chicago article on the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program.

Emergency Grants for Individuals and Families Experiencing Homelessness

On May 11, the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless will launch a mutual aid fund providing one-time emergency grants of up to $500 to individuals and families experiencing homelessness.

The Chicago Coalition for the Homeless (CCH) hopes to quickly process applications and distribute funds to those hit hardest by COVID-19 and its economic impact. The fund will be overseen and led by a committee of grassroots leaders with lived experience of homelessness.

Individuals interested in applying can apply online or over the phone beginning Monday, May 11 at 9 a.m. through Friday, May 15 at 5 p.m. 

  • Access to the application will made available on the home page of the CCH website from 5/11 at 9am until 5/15 at 5pm.
  • To apply over the phone, individuals can call and speak to an operator at (312) 641-4148 between 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Outside of those hours, people can leave a message and will receive a return call to fill out the application.
  • The online application is available in Spanish, and Spanish-speaking phone operators can be reached at the above number.

For more information, please visit this webpage or view the flyers below.