Clarion student group challenges community to month on SNAP benefits

January 29, 2018
able snap challenge
Christian Schill and ABLE students Breanna McGaughey, Devon Vallies and Hannah Rigby sign up SNAP Challenge participants at Clarion Walmart.

Clarion University Advisory Board for Leadership and Engagement is coordinating a month-long SNAP Challenge from Feb. 2 to March 2. Participants are challenged to spend only the amount allotted to Pennsylvania residents receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits.

"The monthly allotment we will be using for the challenge comes from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, which is $142 per person, per month (approximately $4.73 per person per day), said ABLE member and challenge coordinator Christian Schill of Knox. "Note that this amount includes all food they consume, not just meals, so restaurants, snacks, etc."

Schill, a junior molecular biology and chemistry major with concentration in biochemistry, developed the challenge after a summer of research into rural public health issues, specifically revolving around hunger and the ways that certain Pennsylvania counties are responding to the crisis of food insecurity.

"The purpose of the program is to spark conversations in the community about the reality of life on SNAP benefits and to encourage discussion about food insecurity in Clarion County and how we, as a community, should address this issue," Schill said.

At the conclusion of the challenge, ABLE will host a community potluck from 6 to 8 p.m. March 5 at Clarion VFW. Participants are encouraged to bring dishes they made during the challenge.

To take part in the challenge, contact Schill at c.n.schill@eagle.clarion.edu.

Last Updated 1/29/18