What is FoodShare?
FoodShare is a federal program and Wisconsin’s first line of defense against hunger. Funded 100% by the USDA, FoodShare is an entitlement program, meaning it assists people who have low incomes and difficulty affording food get monthly help to make ends meet.
FoodShare provides food buying power at the grocery store through an EBT card called Quest. Eligibility is based on household income and size, but because of the current public health emergency, benefits have been as much as $250 per month for single person or up to $992 per month for larger households. Applying for FoodShare has become easier and the benefit levels should stay high through mid-January.
Hunger Task Force Can Help You Get the Food You Need!
1) Receive Assistance In-Person
You can apply over the telephone, using a computer or by visiting either the traditional welfare office or one of our self-help centers. If it seems complicated, we can help you through it by providing fast and friendly care!
All Hunger Task Force services are free. Connect 1-on-1 with our FoodShare Advocates to determine your eligibility for benefits in about 15 minutes. Our knowledgable team serve tens of thousands of people every year, both in-person and over the phone.
Hunger Task Force staff speak English, Spanish, Hmong, Lao, Karen, Pashto, and Dari.
2) Apply For & Manage Benefits Online
You can apply for FoodShare, manage your case, check your balance and submit documents through the MyACCESS smartphone app.
If you are unemployed we encourage you to apply for both Unemployment and FoodShare. You can apply online; having your eligibility interview over the phone and use your smart phone to upload required proof called “verification.”
TWO LOCATIONS, NO APPOINTMENT NEEDED!
Alicia’s Place FoodShare Resource Center
4144 N. 56th Street, Midtown Center
Robles FoodShare Resource Center
723 W. Historic Mitchell Street
Frequently Asked FoodShare Questions
With high unemployment, many people need emergency food.
Federal nutrition programs can help meet the need during times like these. Our federal and state governments have improved food programs and made it easier to help you keep putting food on the table.
How do I know if I qualify?
Lost your job or work hours?
You could qualify for a program called FoodShare (formerly known as food stamps). FoodShare provides you with an EBT card that is preloaded with money for groceries every month! You can use it most places you buy food, and it’s protected with a secure PIN unique to you. (Your card works for groceries but cannot be used at restaurants or to buy hot food items in-store.)
How much can I get in FoodShare each month?
The most that you can receive is $250/month for one person, $459/month for a two-person household, and increases for larger size households.
How long does it take to complete this process?
It depends on the size of your family or household, but most applications can be finished in 15-20 minutes. Most new applicants need to also do an interview, which can be done over the phone and can take about 30 minutes, but wait times could be longer. If you live in Milwaukee County call 888-947-6583 or 711 (TTY).
What else should I know about the application?
If you make a mistake, don’t worry! But don’t hit the back button. Just keep going until you get to the section summary and you can make edits then. Before you exit the application, write down your tracking number. It will be needed during your interview.
I finished the application. What’s next?
The FoodShare program requires an interview that can be done over the phone.* You can call your agency after you’ve completed the application. If you live in Milwaukee County call 888-947-6583 or 711 (TTY).
My phone interview is done. Now what?
If you’ve received FoodShare before and have your old EBT card, your benefits will load to that card. If you’ve never had FoodShare, everything should come in the mail, which will be within 30 days of completing the interview.
If you HAVE had a case in the past and don’t have your card anymore, call to get your Quest EBT card mailed out! Dial 877-415-5164 to request one – it only takes a minute!
Can I get FoodShare faster?
If you have little or no income, your case could be expedited and you’ll receive benefits sooner, within 7 days.
How do I submit paperwork?
At this time, you should probably download the MyACCESS mobile app. It makes it really easy to upload documents or check your status. You can download it from the Apple App Store or get it on Google Play. You can also fax or mail in paperwork.
Milwaukee Enrollment Services (MiLES):
Fax: (414) 438-4580
Mail: PO Box 05676, Milwaukee, WI 53205-0676
How can I replace food lost during a flood, fire or power outage?
Current FoodShare members who lose food purchased with FoodShare benefits due to a flood, a fire, or other household misfortune, can request the replacement benefits from the State. Per the FoodShare handbook, a loss of power for four (4) hours or more can qualify as a household misfortune.
Members should fill out the Request for Replacement FoodShare Benefits form and submit it to their local agency online, by fax, by mail or in-person. The form must be submitted no more than ten (10) days after the incident. Households will be asked to describe how food was destroyed and will be requested to provide documented proof. In the case of a power outage, members must include a letter from their utility company confirming that there was a power outage, as well as the duration of that outage. This letter should be submitted with the Request for Replacement FoodShare Benefits form.
If you have questions about applying for replacement FoodShare benefits, or about the status of your request, contact your local income maintenance agency.
Can I purchase food online?
Listing of retailers in Wisconsin accepting EBT online:
- Lou Perrine’s Gas and Grocery
- Ptacek’s IGA
- Sam’s Club Scan and Go
- Schnuck’s Market
- Woodman’s Markets
What else should I know?
You have rights! Disagree with a decision? Other questions or concerns? Check out a full list of your rights here. If you want to file a fair hearing, you have a right to do so and can contact Legal Action for help at www.legalaction.org.
You can apply in a language that you understand! The website is only available in Spanish and English, but you can call your local agency and complete the process in your preferred language.
Contact Hunger Task Force:
Tammy, Senior Specialist: (414) 588-7132 Senior Specialist
Kassandra, Veteran Specialist: (414) 588-7534
These flyers provide the helpful information on the website in an easy-to-read, printable format to share. Learn more about Emergency FoodShare benefits, how to apply and information about the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program with the flyers below, available in English, Spanish, Hmong and Burmese.
Click here to view this step-by-step guide to applying for FoodShare benefits through Wisconsin’s ACCESS website.
SNAP (the federal term for FoodShare) is hands-down, the best anti-hunger program in the nation. For more than 40 years, it has proven over and over to respond to economic crises, so if families lose work, they’ll still have some help putting food on the table.
ACCESS News & Stories
Outpost Natural Foods and Hunger Task Force Launch Produce to the People Discount Program for Wisconsin FoodShare Participants
Hunger Task Force and Outpost Natural Foods partner to launch ‘Produce to the People’ discount for FoodShare participants. Program provides 50% savings on fresh produce to shoppers when using FoodShare.
The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security want to make sure that everyone who qualifies for nutrition assistance gets that help. Applying for or receiving SNAP does not make you a public charge and will not affect immigration status.
In preparation for relaunching a Voices Against Hunger newsletter, we sat down with Matt Stienstra, FoodShare Program Manager and former Advocacy Campaign Manager at Hunger Task Force. Matt discusses the importance of FoodShare and shares advice for accepting the responsibility of taking on and leading a citizen advocacy group.