Low-income seniors: Apply now for farmers market produce checks


April 16, 2014


Contact:  Michael Taylor-Judd (206-684-0266)

 Low-income seniors: Apply now for farmers market produce checks

Applications are now available for the popular Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program, which provides low-income seniors with $40 “checks” that can be exchanged for fresh produce at farmers markets, roadside stands, and community supported agriculture programs throughout King County.

Applicants must be King County residents age 60 or older (age 55 or older if American Indian/Alaska Native) and low-income—below 185 percent of Federal Poverty Level (FPL). In real terms, that means someone who meets the age requirement must have an annual income at or below $21,588 (or $1,799 monthly) if he or she lives alone or $29,100 ($2,425 monthly) if he or she lives with one other person. For larger households, the FPL formula adds $625 per month per person.

“Many King County seniors have been inspired by visiting their local farmers market—perhaps for the first time—and eating fresh, nutritious, unprepared, locally-grown fruits, vegetables, herbs, and honey,” said Maureen Linehan, interim director of Aging and Disability Services, the agency that oversees the state-funded program in King County. “This has been a great investment in senior nutrition.”

Applications are available online (www.agingkingcounty.org/SFMNP/) or by calling any of the organizations listed below.

  • African American Elders Program: 206-328-6840
  • Asian Counseling & Referral Service: 206-695-7510
  • Chinese Information & Service Center: 206-624-5633 ext 4178
  • Latino Information & Assistance: 206-764-4700
  • Neighborhood House: 206-461-4522
  • Russian Information & Assistance (Irina at JFS): 206-861-8787
  • Seattle Mayor’s Office for Senior Citizens: 206-684-0500
  • Senior Information & Assistance (206-448-3110 or 1-888-4ELDERS)

Because funds are limited, a random selection process is used to select recipients. Completed applications must be postmarked on or before May 15, 2014. All applicants will receive mail notification of their status on or before July 1.

A searchable list of local markets can be found on the Washington State Farmers Market Association website (www.wafarmersmarkets.com/washingtonfarmersmarketdirectory.php).

Aging and Disability Services—a unit of the City of Seattle Human Services Department—is designated by the State of Washington as the Area Agency on Aging for King County. The agency plans, coordinates, and advocates for a comprehensive service delivery system for older adults, family caregivers, and people with disabilities in King County. For more information, visit www.agingkingcounty.org.