August 14, 2023

Social Policy Study Reveals Vital Role of SNAP for Children and Families

A recent report from the Center for the Study of Social Policy (CSSP) has provided new insight on the critical role of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in the health and well-being of children and families.

About the Report

Entitled, “The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP): A Vital Resource for Children, Youth, and Families,” the report combined data from existing research with insights from interviews between CSSP staff and SNAP-assisted families to build a complete picture of SNAP’s impact.

Key Findings

Key findings from the report show:

  • In 2021, SNAP reached 41.5 million people in an average month.
  • SNAP plays a critical role fighting hunger and malnutrition, and promoting economic wellbeing.
  • For families, SNAP can help lift some of the weight off parents and caregivers as they struggle to feed growing children.
  • For youth and young adults, SNAP provides some security and stability as they transition to adulthood and pursue their goals.
    • This support is especially critical for young people who age out of foster care and are disproportionately likely to struggle to afford food, as they often lose access to social services and economic supports when they leave foster care.
  • SNAP can be a critical resource for young people, helping them buy food and meet their needs as they set out on their own, further their education, embark on their careers, and form their own families.

CSSP Policy Recommendations

Though SNAP provides an enormous, essential benefit to families and youth, CSSP shared in the report that SNAP can do more to help people meet their needs and pursue their goals, offering a number recommendations. They encourage policymakers to:

  • increase benefit levels,
  • repeal the three-month time limit for adults,
  • restore access to immigrant families, and
  • lift the ban on hot food.

Learn More

To learn more, read the full report or visit the CSSP website.


Information for this post was taken directly from the CSSP SNAP report. Some text may have been added, paraphrased, or adapted for readability and comprehension.

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