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Keiki under 6 get SNAP benefits

HONOLULU — The Keiki Under 6 Food Support Program provides benefits for children under the age of 6 who have received SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly food stamps) benefits at any time since Oct. 1, 2020, according to the state Department of Human Services.

Benefits are paid for each month the eligible child(ren) received SNAP benefits between October 2020 through May 2021. Benefits were loaded to the family’s Kokua EBT account starting June 24.

There is no application needed for the Keiki Under 6 Food Support Program. Eligible children are automatically enrolled for this program through verification of SNAP participation with the department’s eligibility system.

This program is approved by the U. S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service, and authorized by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act as amended by the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021, and Other Extensions Act and the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021.

How does this work?

Eligible children will have their benefits issued to their family’s existing SNAP account and Kokua EBT (a form of debit card that can be used on eligible purchases). If the eligible child has already received some P-EBT benefits as a student at a National School Lunch Program-participating school, they will receive any additional benefits they are eligible for on their existing Hawai‘i P-EBT account and card.

What items
can be bought?

Benefits can be used to purchase SNAP-eligible foods, such as groceries (including frozen items), snacks,and seeds or plants that will produce food. Benefits cannot be used to purchase alcohol, tobacco products, vitamins, live animals, prepared foods or any non-food household items. For a list of SNAP-eligible foods, see fns.usda.gov/snap/eligible-food-items.

The Kokua EBT cards can also be used in the Da Bux program. If a replacement card is needed (Kokua EBT), call the Fidelity Information Service customer service at 1- 888-328-4292.

How much will
children receive?

Depending on where a child resides, the following are the maximum amounts that a child could receive that covers the period of October 2020 through May 2021:

w Hawai‘i Island, Lanai and Maui: $1,144;

w O‘ahu: $1,002;

w Kaua‘i and Moloka‘i: $931.

Variations in benefit amounts are based on the learning models (100% distance, hybrid or in-person) that were used on each island throughout the benefit period.

A letter will be mailed to inform participants how much a child will be receiving for the October 2020 to May 2021 period.

Where can I call with more questions?

You can call the P-EBT call center at 1-888-975-PEBT (7328), or write to DHS by clicking the “Contact Us” button at pais-pebt.dhs.hawaii.gov/., to report a change of address or for similar concerns.

If a replacement card is needed, please call FIS customer service at 1-888-328-4292.

When will
benefits be issued?

The Keiki Under 6 Food Support Program benefits for the period October 2020 through May 2021 were or will be loaded to the family’s Kokua EBT account starting June 24.

Where can I check on a child’s benefit status?

Go to humanservices.hawaii.gov and click on to the P-EBT status banner.
Source: The Garden Island

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