CalFresh Program

CalFresh is a program funded by the USDA to help improve health and nutrition of families with low incomes. CalFresh can stretch food dollars, allowing families and individuals to buy more healthy foods.

A CalFresh recipient is issued an EBT card that works like a debit card and can be used to buy most foods at many markets and food stores.

Who is it for?

CalFresh can improve quality of life for local Santa Barbara residents who meet eligibility requirements and want to add to their budget to put healthy and nutritious food on the table.

CalFresh is for all types of people that fit within the eligibility guidelines. CalFresh is not only for mothers or families with children. Fathers, single adults, college students, people with disabilities, seniors, and working families are also eligible for CalFresh. If a parent is ineligible, they can apply on behalf of their children.

Call FSA to be pre-screened for likely eligibility or use this online tool.

What are the monthly benefits?

The amount you receive depends on your income, expenses, and family size. Most households with CalFresh get about $200 each month.

How is FSA involved?

FSA-SMVYFC is a CalFresh contractor leading the way in outreach and application assistance in Santa Barbara County. We can help you complete the entire CalFresh application and submit it to the Santa Barbara County Department of Social Services (DSS) electronically on your behalf. We then help guide you in the next steps to send your necessary documentation directly to the DSS.  Our trained staff can help you at every step of the approval process. We can help fax or scan verification documents or contact DSS on your behalf.

Because benefits are administered by DSS, only DSS can make the final approval decision and will notify you within 30 days of the outcome.

You can read more about the application process on the County of Santa Barbara Department of Social Services website

How do I apply?

You can enroll in CalFresh through FSA in person or over the phone. FSA can also provide support in the community, at your home, or in another setting more convenient to you.

Online: If you would like to start an application now, click here to apply for food assistance online or using your smartphone. The application is simple and clear, and it takes just a few minutes to complete. 

Over the Phone: We can complete the entire CalFresh application over the phone and submit it to DSS electronically on your behalf. We then help guide you in the next steps to send your necessary documentation directly to DSS.

In Person: Contact a Family Advocate at our Family Resource Center. To find the Family Resource Center nearest you contact one of our office locations listed below:  

123 W, Gutierrez St.
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(805) 965-1001 x1222

Family Support Services
648 E. Enos Dr.
Santa Maria, Ca 93454
(805) 928-4150

Dorothy Jackson Family Resource Center
Lompoc, CA 93436
(805) 743-4146